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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Aug 7, 2018

Cebuana Actress Chai Fonacier Has Won Three Best Supporting Actress Awards, Now Plays The Lead Role In The Pista Ng Pelikulang Pilipino Entry, 'Pinay Beauty, She's No White'

CEBUANA actress Chai Fonacier has won three best supporting actress awards for “Patay na si Hesus”, “Miss Bulalacao” and “Respeto”. She now plays her first lead role in “Pinay Beauty (She’s No White)”, a Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino entry written by Rod Marmol and Alpha Habon, and directed by Jay Abello.

“Pero sa totoo lang, kahit napanood ko na yung movie, hindi pa rin nagsi-sink in sa akin na bida na ako,” she says. “More than anything else, I pray na sana makatulong yung movie to spark discussions on our beauty standards. I play a character na gustong pumuti, so she can play Snow White sa musical ng Hong Kong Disneyland. And her boyfriend, played by Edgar Allan Guzman, will do everything to help her achieve her dream, kahit magnakaw siya ng malaking halaga para lang makapagparetoke ako with a cosmetic surgeon. Dahil dito, malalagay sa panganib ang buhay niya. The question is: is it all worth it? Madalas kasi, we put pressures on our selves and on each other in our desire na magmukhang maganda, not knowing that beauty is not only on the surface but, more importantly, mas maganda yung beauty ng kalooban because it’s the one that doesn’t fade.”

Did Chai achieve her objective in the film? The ending will really surprise you because something else happens to Chai’s face because of Tikoy Aguiluz, acclaimed director of award winning films like “Rizal sa Dapitan” and “Segurista” who is an actor here. He plays the contravida who wants to kill Edgar Allan Guzman for owing him a huge amount of money but it’s Chai who gets on the way and suffers the consequences.

Aside from Tikoy, another director also appears as an actor in the movie, Richard Somes, whose new movie, “We Will Not Die Tonight” starring Erich Gonzales, is also an entry in the Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino. “Pinay Beauty” is also a tribute to Fernando Poe, Jr. and his daughter, Lovi Poe. The role played by Maxine Medina as Lovely G is obviously meant for Lovi Poe. Lovely is said to be the child of Da King and this is mentioned several times. Posters of Da King’s past movie also figure prominently in some scenes.

The lead role in “Pinay Beauty” is truly tailor made for Chai, whose career is really on the way up since she’s also now a regular in the new ABS-CBN teleserye, “Halik”, as the friend of Yen Santos. But it’s not only her who excels in the movie but, even more so, Edgar Allan Guzman as her martyr boyfriend who willingly risks his own life for her so she can achieve her dream of being beautiful. EA is really one of our best young actors today as he can manage to shine with his effortless, finely nuanced performances in any kind of role assigned to him. Giving excellent support are Mariko Ledesma as the transgender friend of EA and Hanna Ledesma as the lesbian friend. They both give very relaxed, natural performances that can be quite hilarious at times.