Tag Archives: Richard Gutierrez

What are the brightest local celebs up to?

by Nickie Wang

Who are making waves in local tinseltown these days and what are brewing it the country’s big media networks?

Kristine Hermosa’s “I do” response to the question “Will you marry Oyo Boy Sotto” is to date her best gift to Dina Bonnevie and Vic Sotto’s unico hijo. The 26-year-old Oyo Boy, who celebrated his birthday yesterday, exchanged vows with Kristine in a very simple and private ceremony. This celebrity event is the first to add sparkle to other showbiz happenings that will take place in the coming days and weeks. Continue reading

Sa ‘Yo Lamang rakes 22.5 M, In Your Eyes hits 60 M

On its first week at the box office, Star Cinema’s 17th anniversary offering Sa ‘Yo Lamang earned P22.5 million. Meanwhile, GMA Films and Viva Films co-production, In Your Eyes, grossed P60 M after its 3rd week run.

Meet Sunshine Corazon

by Nickie Wang

Sunshine Corazon is your typical Asian teenage girl. The 15-year-old lass wears specs, updates her Facebook and Twitter accounts, giggles when she talks about her crushes, and adores the likes of Beyoncé, Lady Gaga, and Rihanna. You bet, her hobbies are singing and dancing.

Sunshine (portrayed by Charice Pempengco) is a foreign exchange student from the Philippines, with astounding and amazing killer vocals; she presents some serious competition against Rachel Berry (Lea Michele), the captain and the self-proclaimed star of McKinley High’s show choir, New Direction. Continue reading

People 10.3.09

…are talking about

Ondoy telethons

The country’s two major TV stations immediately initiated telethons dedicated to raise funds and collect relief goods for the victims of typhoon Ondoy. We saw how people can make great efforts to help, and we saw how ABSCBN’s Sagip Kapamilya proved how powerful it is in convincing even big companies to extend some assistance. The station has generated more than 100 million pesos in cash and in kind. Does this mean that ABS-CBN is the more trusted media organization?

Christine Reyes

Christine Reyes: Real-life damsel in distress

Christine Reyes: Real-life damsel in distress

New York Times called her a real-life damsel in distress after being stranded on top of the roof for twelve hours and saved by Patient X co-star Richard Gutierrez. Among the celebrity victims, Christine’s story is the closest to a fairy tale or a scene in a movie where a knight in shining armor emerged from nowhere and swept her off to safety.  Only one thing that we noticed though, while other celebrities tried to help as many people as they could, Christine’s rescuer didn’t save anybody else apart from her and her family.

Gerald Anderson

Gerald Anderson swimming murky floodwaters

Gerald Anderson swimming murky floodwaters

Tiagong Akyat literally  swam the murky floodwaters and climbed walls to check on his neighbors who might have needed help during the calamity considering that his own house was also flooded. And there were no video cameras, although neighbors caught his near heroic deed in still and amateur video cameras. In times like the recent disaster that wreaked havoc in Metro Manila, we can really see celebrities who genuinely help people and those who are just eager to have photo opportunities in the middle of rescue and relief operations. We don’t have to name names. They parade themselves on TV anyway.

…are not talking about

GMA Drama Series

Kapuso network profiles leading characters in its television series as people who are martyrs, and thus promote and tolerate culture of cruelty. In this time and age, no person who is in his or her sound mind, would desire to be occasionally slapped or dragged on the floor. If the big wigs in the station thought viewers enjoy this kind of drama, then they have to check their calendars because they seem stuck in the old ways. Aren’t they wondering why they can’t even score any higher than the Kapamilya shows in the provinces? And why theirs are slowly losing audiences in Mega Manila? Time to change ways, Kapuso! You’ve been lingering long in your old and rotten formula.

Lovers In Paris

Lovers in Paris stars Piolo Pascual and KC Concepcion

Lovers in Paris stars Piolo Pascual and KC Concepcion

Primetime’s latest localized series debuted modestly in the ratings race amid massive publicity and promotion. The viewers seem not too excited to follow the love affair of Carlo and Vivian. Is it because the lead stars are an aging matinee idol and a commercial model turned actress who is obviously not fit for the role?

Mark Herras

The Bad Boy of the dance floor is enticed going to the gym because of an aim to be part of Cosmo Bachelor Bash next year. Did he suddenly feel inferior by the attention Gerald Anderson and Aljur Abrenica got when they flaunted their well sculpted torsos? The truth is, Mark needs more than just doing crunches and barbell curls; he needs to work double time because most of his contemporaries’ careers are moving faster than his.

When less is really more

By Nickie Wang/Manila Standard Today

How can “less is more” be possible?

A lot of people asked when a couple of billboards along Edsa were seen with the catchy tagline “Less is More.”

Because the huge ads didn’t indicate the product or service being advertised, the white and pink balloons gave us the idea that something wonderful will soon be unveiled.

And we were right. Flawless, the country’s leading aesthetic beauty clinic chain, was re-launched with a much better promise to its customers.

Celebrities, party people, entertainment press, and invited guests all came in white and pink at the grandiose Blue Leaf Pavilion located at McKinley Hill Village, Taguig City on May 24 to witness the grand re-launch of Flawless.

The white and pink-themed event was hosted by Phoemela Baranda and featured celebrity endorsers like Lorna Tolentino, Allysa Milano, Yasmien Kurdi, and Butch Francisco. Other Flawless endorsers like Judy Ann Santos-Agoncillo, Mark Herras, Richard Gutierrez, and the very controversial Katrina Halili were not there to unveil the new Flawless tagline “Less is More.”

All endorsers who were present at the momentous event appeared before the guests in their simple attires that still made them elegant-looking like Lorna Tolentino who had a brief appearance wearing a simple white gown. The short but sweet program was so simple that it furthered the adage “simplicity is beauty.”

“Less in more, right? So let’s focus less on other issues and more on Flawless. I’m so proud of how this brand has evolved. This is such a pioneering approach to beauty. It’s an honor for me to be associated with this brand,” was the short but very evocative statement of Vicki Belo, part-owner of Flawless.

The new look

Flawless was established in 2001 to provide top beauty services to people who put premium on their looks and appearance. Eight years and 30 branches later, the aesthetic beauty clinic chain has consistently raised industry standard by providing high-quality services at reasonable price.

Part of the new image, each Flawless branch has been renovated to complement the new slogan.

“Less Is More is more than just a tag-line; it’s a mindset, a way of life. Our endorsers have embraced that, and I know our customers will do, too,” said Ruby Sy, chief executive officer and managing director of Flawless.

She added that having an aesthetic clinic chain debunks the myth surrounding the beauty industry. Sy explained that beauty is not about narcissism or just capitalism anymore. “Flawless slogan affirms that beauty is just as much as social as it is physical,” she continued.

The services Flawless provides are drafted to replenish and rejuvenate each costumer’s physical and mental being. Services are customized depending on the customers’ budget and privacy requirements. It provides options of economy (Ruby) class, business (Emerald) class, or first (Diamond) class.

Emerald and Diamond classes are serviced by more serious aestheticians and priced 10 percent and 20 percent, respectively, higher than Ruby. Emerald wards have fewer beds compared to Ruby and provides ample space for those who absolutely need it, while Diamond wards hold only one or two customers at a time guaranteeing privacy and discretion at all times.

Flawless TVC

One of the featured segments of the Flawless grand re-launch was the unveiling of the new television commercial that features its hottest endorsers.

Seen on the 50-second TVC are Yasmien Kurdi, Mark Herras, Katrina Halili, Richard Gutierrez, Lorna Tolentino, and Judy Ann Santos-Agoncillo in their simplest moments that make new slogan more understood. It captures the essence of the “Less Is More” mindset by showing the glamorous endorsers at their most unguarded and natural moments.

The TVC was directed by world-renowned GJ Bleechmore who is best known for working on feature films such as Truth or Dare starring Madonna. He also directed music videos for The Rolling Stones, Elton John, and Janet Jackson.

Richard Gutierrez relives the Legend of Zorro

By Nickie Wang/ Manila Standard Today

zorroThis year’s most anticipated and ambitious program to be produced on primetime television is the first and official localized version of the story of a fictional character created in the early 20th century.

Zorro, GMA Network’s latest addition to its strong Telebabad block, will be headlined by Richard Gutierrez playing the role of Antonio Pelaez, a nobleman and master swordsman living in the Spanish colonial era.

Gutierrez is set to charm three of the television’s hottest and equally talented young actresses: Rhian Ramos as Lolita, the ladylove of Zorro; Bianca King as Cara; and Michelle Madrigal as Juana.

According to GMA vice president for entertainment Wilma Galvante, this world-class series is shot entirely in the picturesque and Spanish-inspired location in Bagac, Bataan. She added that viewers will have a visual trip into the past with the presence of grand old-style houses, cobblestones pathways and fortifications. The scenes that feature gypsies, carnivals, circus actors, courtesans and pirates are few of the main attractions that will give the series an authentic Spanish-era feel.

Directed by distinguished directors who have helmed numerous top-rating programs in GMA: Mark Reyes, the man behind successful series Encantadia and Codename: Asero; and Dominic Zapata, the virtuoso director whose projects include Mulawin and Captain Barbell, are out to transform the Legend of Zorro into a moving tale that will captivate local audience starting today.

The masked hero

At the grand launch of the series, which was indeed a grandiose event, Richard entered the newly built state-of-the-art Studio 7 of GMA hovering across the venue through a harness connected to a cable. He then gave the entertainment press a peek of what kind of action viewers can expect from the action-packed made-for-television program.

“Our main goal is not to surpass what the original Zorro did. We just want him to look like a Pinoy. With the help and cooperation of the whole team, I think we are on the right track,” Richard related when he was flanked by the press.

Richard will be seen carrying a long, slender, two-edged sword throughout the series, as he reprises the role of the masked hero.

According to the actor, although he knows how to ride a horse, he had to undergo training in horseback riding to prepare for the role. Just like the whole cast, he also had Spanish lessons to prepare his tongue in pronouncing foreign words included in the script. As part of the preparation, the actor even studied fencing that primed him for difficult skirmishing stunts.

The blazing ‘Z’ mark

The original Zorro is famous for branding his tyrants on the chest with a blazing “Z” mark. Will this new series make another mark to GMA’s primetime block?

Zorro is Richard’s seventh collaboration with the station after Mulawin, Sugo, Captain Barbell, Lupin, Kamandag, and Codename: Asero. All of these top-rating programs gave Richard the moniker “Primetime King.” Aside from the established connection the actor has made with the loyal Kapuso viewers, the series’ powerhouse cast is also one of the program’s main attractions.

The star-studded cast are Eddie Gutirrez as Governor Luis Argon, Mark Gil as Capt. Horacio Pelaez, TJ Trinidad as Ramon Pelaez, Jomari Yllana as Diego dela Vega, Sandy Andolong as Maria, Pinky Marquez as Doña Catalina Pulido, Leo Martinez as Don Carlos Pulido, Bobby Andrews as Sgt. Pedro Gonzales, Ricky Davao as Padre Felipe, Sheena Halili as Lena, Bubbles Paraiso as Magda, Maureen Larazabal as Bella, Robert Villar as Pepe, Antonio Aquitania as Bernardo, Elvis Gutierrez as Silverio, Epi Quizon as Shishong, Bodie Cruz as Agustin Manalo, Paloma as Paquita, Shiela Marie as Liza, and Gloria Sevilla as Nana Zita.

The program that also boasts lavish production design and exceptional visual effects tells a story of a skilled horseman who becomes the champion of the masses. Abandoned by his courtesan mother (Marcela, to be played by Lani Meracdo) at a young age, Antonio (Richard Gutierrez) was raised under the care of the well-off haciendero Don Roberto Pelaez (Joel Torre) and his wife Doña Chiquita (Jacklyn Jose).

Amidst being raised by an affluent family, Antonio builds close ties with the commoners called Indios and empathizes with their plight. The romance, on the other hand, starts when Antonio meets the hardheaded Lolita (Rhian Ramos), during his search for his mother.

“I’m excited about this. Even though I didn’t audition, I’m still happy that I got the part,” Rhian revealed. “I’m so happy to be with a leading man I’m comfortable working with.”

The young actress said that because of her busy schedule during the casting of the series, she wasn’t able to audition for the plum role, but it was anyway her intention to be part of the much awaited series. Zorro is the third onscreen tandem of Rhian and Richard after Captain Barbell and Lupin.

The year that was

By Billy Bong

We posted this entry with the knowledge that 2008 is really over and that 2009 will be another year of ups and downs in the world of showbiz.

There are guaranteed facts in showbiz. People will rise, get famous and fade. Some of them might stay on top for a longer time but the cycle is irreversible. Top rating television series will become the past, box office records will be wiped out by a much better movie that will make cinematic history, stars will get married (Raymond Bagatsing married a sexagenarian), some will get pregnant (Angelika dela Cruz) but will not tie the knot (Vina Morales and Nancy Jane), more actors will undress for a magazine and for an indie flick (too many to mention), take drugs and go to the rehab (hard to mention), and some will breakthrough and glint in the limelight for a short moment.

The year 2008 was truly a cacophony of smiles and teardrops, and of victories and defeats. The ugly distortion of imitation of life in the world of entertainment however, defines what had happened in the year of hypes and intrigues.


People witnessed sad goodbyes from Rudy Fernandez and Marky Cielo, but there were more intriguing and groundbreaking news that stirred local showbiz.

Marian Rivera

Marian Rivera

Angel Locsin already had her years as the primetime queen but O-eight was definitely the year of Marian Rivera. Before the meaningful smile of Karylle, who made a controversial station loyalty shift, Marian made waves (literally) by wearing the mythical tale of Dyesebel. It’s not just the most watched series, it’s even one of the shows on TV that resonated with great audience recall, and we are giving the consolation to Dyosa.

The hype of Marian even forced GMA Network and ABS CBN to saturate their programs with fantasy series. This could probably the reason why many Filipinos are contented with just dreaming in the broad day light because they are being bombarded by fictional images that did not even mobilize them to combat mediocrity.

As 2009 is being ushered by new a bevy of programs from the country’s giant television networks, the clamor for intelligent, appealing, and quality programs rises. They should do away with fantasy series, they must also stop reviving old movies and creating serialized versions, and most of all, as we draw 2009 with a safe knowledge that Kapuso and Kapamilya networks will showcase more localized versions of foreign television dramas, they should also think that network war also means battle for excellence and not just with who-makes-a-crappy program thing.

There are more competitions outside the country just like the Asian Television Awards. Rival networks must contemplate why they don’t get more awards from foreign award giving bodies. It’s obvious and we don’t have to rub it on the faces of the head honchos of these television networks; they are more consumed with raking huge profits rather than providing their viewers with top quality programs.


If many people thought that Marian Rivera is currently the hottest item in the world of Philippine entertainment, they should also check the statistics and not just the Neilsen’s ratings. One True Love, the film that also starred E! Entertainment 3rd Sexiest Man Alive Dingdong Dantes, was not able to secure a spot in the 2008 top-grossing local films.

a_very_special_loveSarah Geronimo and John Lloyd starrers in A Very Special Love under Star Cinema and Viva Films made history by raking P180 million in the box office. It’s only some millions behind all-time top-grosser Sukob.

It is still a year for Star Cinema because it had produced three movies that broke the 100 million peso mark. Sharon Cuneta’s Caregiver earned P139 million while her daughter’s launching film with Richard Gutierrez For the First Time posted P134 million gross at the box office.

While some of the films earned big, there were some that suffered big losses and failed to run for weeks at the movie houses. The country’s entry for Best Foreign Language Film of the 81st Academy Awards Ploning, APT Films’ animated film Urduja, and Viva Film’s sexy flick Torotot, were among the big flops in 2008.

In 2007, fifty movies were exhibited in commercial theaters. Truly, gone are the days when the Philippines was the world’s fourth largest movie producer. The local industry produced almost a hundred films in 1999, but due to crisis and other factors, production has decreased over the years.

Including the eight entries in the 34th Metro Manila Film Festival, Philippine Cinema has produced more or less forty films in 2008, and that also includes digital or independent films.

The number of independent movies has risen due to the advent of easy on the pocket video cameras, and to the eagerness of some novice filmmakers to make it in the mainstream. Whether people would agree or not, indies are not the salvation of deteriorating local movie industry. A total halt of independent film production however is not a suggestion because it’s still a good training ground to other artists, but people behind indies must also consider or should welcome the fact that indies don’t have an audience except some college students and gays who crave for sleazy flicks.

balermovieposterIndependent filmmaking however is not the only source of rubbish flicks; we have seen all the film entries at the recently concluded 34th MMFF, and we will say this with conviction: Philippine movie industry is hopeless! Yes, Baler is one of the best local films we’ve seen in years, Tanging Ina Ninyong Lahat put the Escalera brothers to their proper place, and Dayo: Sa Mundo ng Elemtalia gave us a glimpse of what the future holds for Philippine animation, but the rest of the movies part of the film fest mirror how the quality of our movies has declined dramatically.


Hate us or love us but we’re going to mention Marian Rivera for the nth time. Yes she released a dance album, and mind you people, the CD went platinum. Her compilation of dance remixes can be now part of the league of 2008 multi-platinum achievers like Sarah Geronimo, KC Concepcion, Sitti, Nina, Claire dela Fuente and Sharon Cuneta.

If Dingdong Dantes released an album we’re not sure if the album would fit the line-up that includes Spongecola, Bamboo, Martin Nievera, Jed Madela and Gary Valenciano. Novelties that are created for mass consumption proved that Willie Revillame was successful in his task to glamorize poverty on his show Wowowee because his album also went platinum.

charice-mgm-grandCharice who dropped her surname Pempengco is still has to prove that she is not just an overnight YouTube sensation and a mascot during David Foster’s appearance on American shows. Her popularity must be translated to album sales first before we could adore her big voice that became her ticket to instant popularity.

When we talk about local music, Regine Velasquez must be present because she is the queen of the shouting sirens. Her album Low Key, an apt title because she can no longer belt high notes, turned gold after three days of release (current sales unknown). Her formula of doing covers still works but for the rest, we really don’t know.

As we beg music artists to stop doing revivals because they are just horrible distortion of classic music, we also ask them to produce masterpieces that could be instant classic. What contemporary song has become iconic and anthemic since the release of Pagdating ng Panahon, Noypi, and Hawak Kamay?

Since local artists failed to produce better music in 2008, we have seen foreign acts that answered why they sell better than our homegrown talents. International artists like Alicia Keys, Chris Brown, Rihanna, The Click Five, James Blunt, and Avril Lavigne among many others, proved that raw music talent is not enough to make it big, technology is also an essential part of creating music that appeals to this generation of local music aficionados.

Yes, Filipino fans favor foreign acts that don’t do covers during their concerts, but this doesn’t necessarily mean that locals are eager to watch one-hit wonder foreign musicians who became famous decades ago and found their way here in the country to earn money because nobody talks about them in their country of origin.

New Year

Year 2008 was the year of many sorts and we can’t help but think that O-nine will nothing much of a difference. Maybe, many actors will still be haunted by controversies, another name will rise into superstardom, and Manny Pacquiao will have a new show and will be extra richer.

We bet, another actor will show some flesh in an indie movie, and another actress will wear nothing but her skin on a magazine cover, and another musician will bring back the old playlist.

Our energy shows no signs of slowing down and to kickoff 2009 with optimism and a prayer that everything would just turn out right, let’s call this year as the year after the hype of Marian Rivera or “the hype continues.”

Top-grossing Pinoy Movies of 2008

Nix top 12 lists down the twelve top-grossing flicks of 2008. Two entries in the 34th Metro Manila Film Festival are already included based on their box  office performance from Dec. 25 to 31, 2008.

a_very_special_love1. A VERY SPECIAL LOVE – P179.23 million (Star Cinema/Viva Films)

Romantic-comedy film featuring the first team-up of Sarah Geronimo with John Lloyd Cruz, this movie directed by Cathy Garcia Molina received an “A” rating from the Cinema Evaluation Board.

caregiver2. CAREGIVER – P139.54 million (Star Cinema)

Stars Sharon Cuneta portraying the role of Sarah, a mother who left her son in the Philippines and also a teacher who relinquished her profession in lieu of care giving in London, in hopes of augmenting her salary. Chito S. Roño directed the film and Chris Martinez wrote its screenplay.

forthefirsttime13. FOR THE FIRST TIME – P134.7 million (Star Cinema)

Romantic film that features Richard Gutierrez and KC Concepcion. It was shot in the Philippines and in Santorini, Greece.KC’s  first movie  also marks the first time that actors from two rival networks have been allowed to team-up for a film. Richard is a GMA 7’s  star while KC  is an exclusive contract artist of Star Cinema.

4. ANG TANGING INA ‘NYONG LAHAT – P 102.5 million (Star Cinema)*

5. MY BESTFRIEND’S GIRLFRIEND – P101.24million (GMA/Regal Films)

6. DOBOL TROBOL GET REDI 2 RAMBOL – P90.51 million (Octoarts Films)

7. WHEN LOVE BEGINS – P89.38 million (Star Cinema/Viva Films)

8. MY ONLY U – P79.18 million (Star Cinema)

9. MAG-INGAT KA SA KULAM – P76.6 million (Regal Films)

10. ISKUL BUKOL: 20 YEARS AFTER – P72.6 (OctoArts/M-Zet/APT)*

11. MY BIG LOVE – P68 million (Star Cinema)

12. SUPAHPAPALICIOUS – P66.98 million (Star Cinema)

* the list did not include the films’ earning from Jan. 1 onwards