CHRISTOPHER De Leon left for Japan last Thursday with wife Sandy Andolong to give support to their daughter Mariel as she competes in the Miss International beauty pageant. “I’m both excited and nervous,” he says. “Sa Bb. Pilipinas noon, sa Novotel lang kami nanood ni Sandy, but when she was named as Bb. Pilipinas International, we walked to the Araneta Coliseum na katapat lang. Kaso, ayaw kaming papasukin ng guards kasi wala kaming ticket. So hinawakan ko 'yung guard sa arm, sabi ko, 'Nanalo yung anak ko!' And he said, 'Ay, sir, sige ho pumasok na kayo.' This time, we’ll watch mismo sa Tokyo Dome where the Miss International pageant will be held on Tuesday. So I’m asking the help of our kababayans to help us pray na sana, maiuwi ni Mariel ang korona.”
He says Mariel is thoroughly enjoying her stay in Japan. “She feels so comfortable there. Gusto na nga raw niyang matira roon kasi mababait ang mga tao.”
He and Sandy now live only with their youngest daughter, Mica. “Our eldest, si Rafael, is in New Zealand. Si Miguel is in California and Gabriel is in New York, while Mariel is in Japan. Thanks to the wonder of technology, nagagawa naming magkausap lagi nang sabay-sabay.”
Before they left, Boyet taped some episodes for his new Kapuso show, the yet untitled drama starring Bianca Umali and Miguel Tanfelix. “I play the owner of a hospital, father ako ni Marvin Agustin na maraming gagawing gulo rito at ako ang tagaayos,” he says. “Anak naman ni Marvin si Miguel.”
How about the series he started with ABS-CBN with Robin Padilla and Jodi Santamaria? “Nag-taping ako, then natigil, for five months na. So I told my manager (Lolit Solis) na tanggapin na namin itong offer ng GMA kaysa nakatengga ako roon sa kabila na hindi ko alam kung kailan magre-resume. I think I’m not the only actor who experienced this. The managers should meet sa PAMI para they can specify in the contract with the networks na kapag na-stop ang taping, or natapos mo na ang taping pero hindi pa rin nila pinalalabas, dapat may sort of expiry date para naman makatanggap ka ng ibang trabaho. Actually, it’s unfair not only for the stars but also the staff working on the shows. Dapat ding iwasan 'yung ipaba-block off sa’yo ang specific dates, tapos, the day before, sasabihing bigla, hindi tuloy. Hindi ako mukhang pera, kaya lang, lahat kami, nagtatrabaho, we give our best, and you feel helpless kapag natetengga ka while waiting for nothing.”
AICELLE ADMITS SETTLING DOWN WITH MARK ON HER MIND
AICELLE Santos will have a solo concert, "Awit na Aicelle", after she made a splash at the 30th Anniversary concert of Regine Velasquez at MOA Arena recently. What can she say about the rave reviews she got comparing her to the other young singers who sang with Regine? She was singled out for her knockout rendition of “Say that You Love Me” with the Songbird.
“Ang feeling ko noon, parang nasa singing contest ako kasi ang laki ng MOA tapos ang dami namin at puro mga biritera ang kasama ko, ganong ako naman, alto,” she says. “I was overwhelmed by the caliber and talent of all the girls in the diva production number and it’s really amazing. Siyempre, flattering na napansin pa rin ako.”
Her fans and all music lovers will now get to see more of her amazing talent in her own concert produced by Stages Sessions with GMA Artist Center. “I’m so excited because this is going to be a very special concert. I’m so thankful that Sir Gary (Valenciano) agreed to be a special guest. Hindi ako makapaniwala kasi nga, tagakabila siya and yet makakasama ko siya ngayon on the same stage.”
Her other guests include The CompanY, Bullet Dumas, Quest and Myke Salomon of "My Korean Jagiya”. We heard her boyfriend, Kapuso broadcaster Mark Zambrano, also sings. So will he be doing a number with her? “Kinakantahan niya ako kung kaming dalawa lang. He’d be there but ewan ko if he’d agree to go up onstage para kumanta with me.”
So are they going to tie the knot soon since they’re both of age? “Napag-uusapan na po namin ang kasal, but nothing definite yet. Wala pa po akong engagement ring, o. But I’m hoping he’s really the One. If ever, I’d prefer a beach wedding since pareho kaming mahilig sa dagat.”
Aicelle’s career is really doing well. She's nominated as best supporting actress for her performance in the recent musical, "Maynila: Sa mga Kuko ng Liwanag". She’s now part of the hit afternoon drama series, “Impostora”, where she plays the best friend of Kris Bernal as Nimfa. She’s also in a new movie that is an entry in the Metro Manila Filmfest, “Ang Larawan”, where she plays the best friend of Cris Villonco. “Vodavil girls po kami na opposite ng magkapatid na bidang played by Rachel Alejandro and Joanna Ampil. Sana nga, mapili kaming official entry sa filmfest.”
For tickets “Awit na Aicelle”, call Music Museum at 02-7216726 or visit www.ticketworld.com.ph.
KIKO NOT QUITE IN THE LIMELIGHT BUT QUIETLY ACTIVE
KIKO Rustia gained fame for his derring do in the very first “Survivor Philippines”, which was shot in Thailand and opened doors for him to be a TV host. With his signature Jack Sparrow dreadlocks, he did the docu-environmental magazine GMA-7 show, “Born to be Wild”, that took him to various places all over the country. After this, he hosted his own show, “This is Pinas”, and became an international print model for Benetton which posted his photos all over Europe.
Now, he’s staying most of the time in Boracay. “I got married and my wife and I put up our own bed and breakfast hotel in Diniwid Beach, the quieter side of Boracay,” he says. “Before ‘Survivor’, talagang sa Boracay na ako nakatira but after I joined ‘Survivor’, I lived in Manila for a while. Now, that I’m a family man, I’m back in Boracay, where me and my wife also met, and we love our laidback lifestyle there. We now have two kids na magkasunod pinanganak, our son Rai Franco who’s 2, and our daughter Raia Franchel who’s 1. I also have a son from a past relationship, Pao, who's now 16. I miss doing all the adventures I did on TV, like going to beaches, mountains and caves. Now, I’m back to hosting and producing travel videos for Victory Liner, which travels up north to Baguio and Cagayan Valley. Entitled ‘Know Your North’, we’ve done videos on Mt. Pinatubo, Zambales, Bataan, Baguio and soon, Cagayan. You can watch them on Youtube and on victoryliner.com.”
He’s now also the endorser of Victory Liner for its new offering, Victory Liner Premiere Prepaid Visa, a reloadable prepaid card in partnership with Metrobank Card, where you can reserve and book your travel tickets online and also enjoy perks and discounts in participating establishments in Manila and Luzon. It also acts like a credit card and ATM card where you can send or get money from your loved ones through their Pera Padala feature.
There will be loading stations at all SM malls & stores, Robinsons, National Book Store, Family Mart, San Miguel Food Ave., and various pawnshops. This will be available at Victory Liner stations starting December 21, 2017.