Hero TV, who is celebrating its 10th year, sent off the Hero Faceoff 2015 winners for the World Cosplay Summit to be held in Nagoya, Japan on Saturday (August 1) on a high note. Team XO, comprised of Sarah Jane “SJ” De Ocampo and Jennifer Ong, paid a courtesy visit prior to their flight last week to invite people to follow their journey as the Philippines’ first World Cosplay Summit participants.
The Philippines has been an observer nation for the World Cosplay Summit for years before being granted a spot for the 2015 edition. Hero TV’s efforts for cosplayers, and the cosplayers themselves as well, did not go unnoticed by WCS’ organizers and have fully welcomed the country to the fold.
In the presscon, Hero TV channel head Jojo Estacio said she believes that the girls have a very good chance in the competition that is set to take place this weekend. “If everything goes to plan, with whatever they prepared, their choreographed skits, we really have a good chance. We didn’t just join for the sake of joining, of course we want to win.”
For their part, SJ and Jennifer have been preparing for the event even before the Hero Faceoff which was held at the MOA Arena. The 26-year-old Jennifer Ong joined Hero Faceoff with the intent of this being her last hurrah in the cosplay world before focusing on their family business back in Davao.
“I really made an effort during the last Faceoff. I wanted to go out with a bang for my last competition and I knew I had to do it right by finding the right partner,” Ong said, who was a prominent cosplayer in Davao during her early years. That partner would turn out to be 23-year-old Sarah Jane De Ocampo, whom Jennifer met back in college, a registered nurse who worked at the emergency department of a private hospital also in Davao.
“My contract with the hospital I was with reached its end and so I turned to costume-making for Hero because I really wanted to be a part of cosplay battles. I was really surprised that my ‘sempai’ (which means senior in Japanese) actually noticed me, and made me her partner for her “farewell” battle,” SJ said.
As for how they select which anime’ character to mirror and how they get to look like them, the two have a mantra. “We don’t just pick a character for the sake of picking one. We select a character that fits our personality and who we know we can really give a justice to when it’s performance time,” Ong said.
“As for our make-up, we try to do it on our own, that’s why we don’t have any make-up person with us going to the competition in Japan. We want to learn how to do it ourselves, since it makes it more fun,” SJ added.
“We hope everyone supports us. We’ll give our best to do the nation proud, and leave a mark to other countries as well. We’re going to give it our all just to get there,” the pair said to the press present.
The World Cosplay Summit will be held in Nagoya, Japan on Saturday (August 1). For updates, visit www.facebook.com/myheronation.