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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.

Oct 7, 2023




GLORIA DIAZ says she grieves that her friends from the entertainment press, Ricky Lo and Ethel Ramos, have both passed away. 

“They’ve been there since I started in showbiz in 1974 with ‘Pinakamagandang Hayop sa Balat ng Lupa’ kaya nakakalungkot,” she says. 

“You know, Mario, you and I are both survivors. Andami nang nawala since mag-umpisa ako, even my original PR, si Mar Cornes, and even my co-stars and past directors. 

"But at 72, I’m glad that I’m still here, still active and lumalaban pa rin.”

Gloria gives another colorful performance in her latest movie, “Lola Magdalena”, where she plays an aging prostitute along with Perla Bautista, Liza Lorena, Pia Moran and Sunshine Cruz.

Didn’t she have second thoughts in  accepting the role that completely deglamourizes our very first Miss Universe? 

“No, okay lang sa’kin to do such a role. Ang doubt ko is, makakaya ko ba siyang i-portray, si Lola Dalena na albularyo sa araw and pokpok sa gabi? 

"Can I give her justice? I’ve played pokpok before, pero susyal. But this one, cheap talaga siya.”

She’s glad her director, Joel Lamangan, and her co-stars helped her in interpreting the role.

“Tinulungan nila ako. I really enjoyed working with everyone kasi ang gagaling nilang lahat. After each take, I ask for feedback. 

"I ask them if I did it right. I can be very hard on myself, kasi ang feeling ko lagi, parang kulang pa.

"But they’re all very supportive and encouraging. It’s my first time to work with Pia Moran and okay siya, so bubbly on the set. 

"She’s so funny playing a character who’s dumb when it comes to men.”

When she did ‘Pinakamagandang Hayop’ in 1974, did she foresee that she’ll continue to act up to now? 

“No, I have no inkling I’d stay in acting this long. But God has been good to me.

"All these years, never akong nabakante talaga. I always have a project, sa movies, sa TV. I even got to do a TV series in the U.S. na inasikaso nila talaga ako. I feel I’m over blessed. 

And I’ve really learned how to love what I do. I want to be like Eddie Garcia, who was acting until the end.”

Dennis Evangelista, the film’s scriptwriter and line producer, says Gloria is their first and only choice for the role of Lola Magdalena. 

“Tuwang-tuwa kami ni Direk Joel kasi very cooperative siya all throughout the shoot. There was one scene na we hesitated ipagawa sa kanya. 

"Ito yung she’s dancing sa sementeryo. Huhubarin niya ang panty niya in front of boys who are masturbating while watching her and she’s crying all the while because of the degradation of her character. 

"So we were reluctant but yet, siya pa ang nagsabi, ‘O, I wore two panties. May black panty ako sa loob para kapag inalis ko yung isa, may maiwan pa.’ So sabi namin, let’s shoot it, kasi game na game naman pala siya.”

Would she allow her two daughters, Isabelle and Ava, and her son Rafael, to watch the movie? 

“Of course! Isabelle actually wants to join here in the screening but she got busy. 

"Although when she saw the trailer, na-shocked siya sa role ko and she said ‘Ma, what will you do next?’”

How many grandchildren does she have? 

“Naku, andami na. Three with Isabelle, two boys and a girl. With Ava, one boy. And with Rafael, two girls and one boy. 

"I never thought I’d enjoy being a grandmother this much. But I ask them to call me Momshie, not Lola.” 

She showed us their pictures on her cellphone and they are all cutie pies, making her a very proud lola. 

She’s glad that the feedback after the screening are all very positive. 

“At ang mas nakakatuwa, we got a rating of PG, which means children can watch it with their parents. 

"Ang prayer na lang namin ngayon, sana, matanggap kami as an official entry sa darating na MMFF this Christmas season. 

"Kasi very positive naman ang message ng movie: don’t look down, don’t judge people who is in this line of work kasi each of us has his own journey at hindi mo alam kung ano ang pinagdaraanan nila.”