July 19, 2018, 5:46 am
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KIM Chiu is celebrating her 28th birthday on April 19 and her new movie, “DOTGA, Da One That Ghost Away,” is opening on April 18 so it may be considered as her special birthday presentation to her fans. Of course, her birthday wish is for DOTGA to be a big box office hit. This is her second movie in a row with the word “ghost” in the title. The first one was “The Ghost Bride”.

“Magkaiba naman sila kasi horror-drama ang ‘Ghost Bride’ at horror-comedy naman ang ‘DOTGA’,” she says. “Pero ang characters ko in both movies, parehong very devoted sa kanilang families at gagawin ang lahat to help them. Dito sa ‘DOTGA,’ I play Carmel. Lola ko si Marissa Delgado na isang espiritista. Siya ang nagpalaki sa akin at naka-relate ako sa character ko kasi, in real life, lola ko talaga ang nagpalaki sa akin. Kaso, may Alzheimer’s disease na ang lola ko rito sa movie at nakakalimutan na niya ang spells and chants niya, so minana ko ang gift niyang nakakakita ng dead people. I put up my own group of ghost busters called Pektus. We are hired by Enzo Pineda as Jack Colmenares to exorcise his house na may malevolent ghosts, without us knowing na mata-trap kami inside the haunted house ng mga kasama ko at haharassin kami ng mga multo roon.”

We ask Kim how it is working with Ryan Bang as her leading man in DOTGA. “Given na talaga ang nakakatawa siya, but dito, I saw his passion sa acting. Sineryoso niya ang role niya. Madalas, nasa sulok lang siya, memorizing his lines to make sure magiging maayos ang performance niya at maganda ang pelikula.”

Off cam, it’s common knowledge she’s playing beautiful music with Xian Liam. They just had a recent vacation in Europe and if pictures could speak a thousand words, then there’s no doubt about their being lovey-dovey at the moment. “We don’t want to put a label on our relationship,” she says. “Nakikita naman ninyo ang photos namin that we post on Instagram, so you can just read between the lines. Basta happy kami.”

***

While waiting for the presscon of “DOTGA” to start, a contract signing at another conference room just ended and we saw Viva Artists Agency top boss, Veronique del Rosario, coming out with some ABS-CBN bosses, along with one of their stars, Yam Concepcion.

Veronique confirmed to us that Yam signed up officially with ABS-CBN while Anne Curtis has also renewed her contract as a Kapamilya. 

Their latest contract star to sign up with ABS-CBN is Ryza Cenon, who was the big winner in GMA-7’s “”Startstruck artista search in 2004. Ryza was last seen in the long running hit that just ended, “Ika-6 na Utos,” where her role as the villainous Georgia really made its mark with afternoon audiences. Her first project with ABS-CBN is to support Angel Locsin in “The General’s Daughter” that will replace “Ang Probinsyano.”

Let’s see if she’d be as successful as other Kapuso stars who became a Kapamilya, like Angel Locsin, and not follow in the footsteps of Jewel Mische or Louise de los Reyes.

***

Alden Richards is so happy he went to the New York Festivals World’s Best TV and Film Awards because his martial law special, “Alaala”, based on the experiences of a real life activist, won the Silver World Medal Award in the docu-drama category. “It’s a great feeling pala to be part of the team that brings honor to the country,” he says. “Nakakatuwa po talaga! Ang daming pong representatives mula sa iba’t ibang bansa, and nakaka-proud pong itaguyod ang Pilipinas.”

In his social media account, he posted his picture showing him holding the trophy their team got for “Alaala.”  “Thank you to the New York Festivals for this great recognition. Congratulations to Team Alaala for the win! To GOD be the glory! #humbled,”

Alden just came from the successful GMA Pinoy TV shows in Toronto, Canada and in New Jersey. Before he returns home, he will have a one-on-one acting workshop with acting coach Anthony Vincent Bova. Upon his return, GMA-7 will then present the new projects meant for him, a new teleserye and also a new movie. 

***

Viva Films is now showing the trailers of their four forthcoming releases in the screenings of “Never Not Love You.” First is “Sid and Aya, Not a Love Story” starring Dingdong Dantes and Anne Curtis, directed by Irene Villamor. Next is the youth oriented movie about a barkada, “Squad Goals” directed by Mark Meily. 

Then there’s “Miss Granny” with Sarah Geronimo and Nova Villa as her older self, with James Reid as her apo, directed by Joyce Bernal. Last is the horror flick, “Cry No Fear,” starring Ella Cruz and Donnalyn Bartolome, directed by Richard Somes. 

It seems Viva has another promising project in the latest project they’re now filming, “Abay Babes.” The story is about five young women who are always bridesmaids, but never the bride herself. So it becomes some sort of a contest for them as to who among them will succeed in facing the altar first with her own groom. 

The five actresses who are assembled for this movie are Cristine Reyes, Meg Imperial, Nathalie Hart, Roxanne Barcelo and beauty queen Kylie Versoza. The first time Viva assembled five girls in a movie was in “Camp Sawi,” the story of five broken hearted girls played by Bela Padilla, Arci Munoz, Andi Eigenmann, Yassi Pressman, and Kim Molina. It was a big hit. The formula is now used again in “Abay Babes” and we won’t be surprised if this, too, would do well at the box office.  

The movie is written and directed by Don Cuaresma and this is his first project with Viva. He has directed several TV shows for ABS-CBN and some films for Star Cinema, like “All ABout Love,” “Call Center Girl” “My First Romance.” He also directed “Loving You” for Regal 10 years ago. 

In “Abay Babes,” Cristine, Nathalie and Kylie seem to play the usual sexy girls in their group. It’s Meg and Roxanne who play unconventional roles. Meg plays a tomboyish girl who likes to wear getups for boys while Roxanne is made up to look like she’s black, someone like Wilma Doesn’t. 

Movies about weddings are usually a hit with audiences so we won’t be surprised it this would do well at the box office. It reminds us of the 2011 Hollywood blockbuster, “Bridesmaids,” which starred comedians Kristen Wiig and Melissa McCarthy.

***

Sophie Albert is thankful that after her stint in “The One that Got Away” as one of Dennis Trillo’s many girlfriends, she is now included in the cast of “Sherlock Jr.” as Erika, the girl who becomes the object of affection of both title roler Ruru Madrid and Rafael Rosell, who just came from the successful afternoon soap, “Impostora.” Some fans of Ruru’s love team with Gabbi Garcia are bashing her but she doesn’t mind. 

“Trabaho lang po ito,” Sophie says.

The story of “Sherlock Jr.” becomes very intriguing as it starts out with Ruru as Jack and Rafael as Gregor fighting furiously like they’re mortal enemies. Ruru said they rehearsed the action scene several times and it was shot at almost 2 in the morning. But later on, it will turn out that they are half brothers as it so happened that they have the same father. The fight scenes are well executed and establishes Ruru no doubt as a young action star.

How does Sophie feel that the rift between half-brothers Ruru and Rafael will worsen because of her? “Feeling ko, sobrang haba ng hair ko dahil pinag-aawayan nila ako,” she beams. “But seriously, I’m very thankful to GMA-7 dahil magkasunod ang magandang assignments na ibinibigay nila sa’kin.”

When it comes to her lovelife, it seems that she and former TV5 colleague, Vin Abrenica, have rekindled their romance after having separated for about one and a half years. It will be recalled that they became on after winning in TV5’s “Artista Academy” talent search but they decided to call it quits when the Kapatid network stopped producing local entertainment shows and Vin moved to ABS-CBN. 

Recently, they were seen vacationing together in Bali and Sophie posted their photos together with the caption: “Happy hearts.”  Is this a confirmation that they have indeed reconciled? “All I can say is what you see is what you get,” she smiles.
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