WE HAD dinner with Lorna Tolentino and son Ralph Fernandez at Gloria Maris. We didn’t know LT experienced a serious health issue last month.
“The doctor discovered na sobrang bilis ng heart rate ko,” she revealed. “I have atrial tachycardia and if not treated, puedeng bigla na lang akong magka-heart attack. So now, I’m taking maintenance medicines for the first time to stabilize my heartbeat. Marami na ring bawal kaya sobrang ingat ako ngayon.”
(“The doctor discovered my heart rate was abnormally fast. I have atrial tachycardia and if left untreated, I am in danger of a sudden heart attack. So now, I’m taking maintenance medicines for the first time to stabilize my heartbeat. I’ve been asked to refrain from some things so I’m being very careful.”)
At 55, LT certainly looks much younger than her age. She now plays mother roles but if the actresses who play her daughters don’t watch out, she can easily eclipse them. She is now currently working with both top networks.
For GMA-7, she has just finished taping a special Lenten presentation for “Eat Bulaga,” entitled “Pagpapatawad,” directed by her good friend Gina Alajar. She co-stars with Patricia Tumulak, Jennica Garcia, Taki and Kenneth Medrano of “Trops.” For ABS-CBN, she stars in a new teleserye, “Victims of Love,” directed by Onat Diaz and co-starring Angelica Panganiban, Julia Montes, Paulo Avelino, Cherry Pie Picache and JC Santos.
LT is also a doting grandma to her only grandchild, Tori, daughter of her eldest son Ralph. Tori is a splitting image of her grandma when LT was starting as a child actress in films like “Divina Gracia” and “Lumuha Pati mga Anghel.” Will Tori also be a child actress?
“Naku, ayaw niyang mag-artista. Mas gusto niyang maging singer. Napakagaling kumanta. Nagko-concert na nga on her own. But she’s busy with school now, at sa June, lilipat na siya sa Poveda. Bawal daw mag-showbiz ang mga estudyante roon.”
(“Oh, she does not want to be an actress. She’d rather be a singer. She’s very good. She stages her own show. But she’s busy with school now and in June, she’ll transfer to Poveda. Students there are prohibited from entering showbiz.”)
In our last dinner with Regal’s Mother Lily, we urged her to produce a movie for Barbie Forteza and her four leading men in “Meant to Be”: Ken Chan, Jak Roberto, Ivan Dorschner and Addy Raj. Their show is such a big hit they now have a huge legion of fans who follow them in their personal appearances and mall shows.
“That’s true, Mother. During their last mall show in San Jose del Monte, 15,000 people came,” reported one writer who was with us. “They’re so hot right now and since GMA Films is no longer active, you should produce the film, even with GMA, so you can take advantage of their popularity now. Barbie has been ripe for stardom since ‘Half Sisters.’ She should have been launched a long time ago.”
Meantime, “Meant to Be” continues to soar in the ratings because of the kilig factor that Barbie has with each of her leading men who are competing for her heart and attention: Ethan (Ivan Dorschner), Yuan (Ken Chan), Jai (Addy Raj) and Andoy (Jak Roberto). Each love team has its own group of fans rooting for them and wondering who’ll be the lucky guy to win Barbie’s love.
At the recent presscon of “It’s Showtime,” Anne Curtis was sporting the diamond engagement ring she got from her fiance Erwan Heussaff. It was flashing on her hand from where she was seated on the stage of Dolphy Theatre. She admits that they are definitely getting married this year.
“But we will start planning the details of our wedding this coming Easter pa lang,” she says.
Will her co-hosts in “It’s Showtime” be part of her wedding entourage? “We haven’t really finalized that, some of them siguro.”
Vice Ganda butts in at this point. “Saka hindi naman po lahat kami, a-attend. Ako nga, hindi pupunta.” (Not all of us will be able to attend. Me, I’m not going.”)
Anne knew he was just joking, knowing Vice, so she didn’t take it seriously. Another host, Jugs Jugueta, said he would attend if Anne would give him a plane ticket, suggesting that Anne and Erwan will have their nuptials abroad. This is not surprising since all Anne’s friends got married abroad to keep their wedding very private, like Isabelle Daza, Solenn Heussaff and Georgina Wilson. One sure thing is that her younger sister, Jasmine Curtis Smith, will be her maid of honor. Our best wishes to the prospective bride and groom.
We feel sad for Martin Escudero. He used to be projected as a leading man-matinee idol type when he was still with GMA-7, being managed by Popoy Caritativo. He chose to move to TV5 but we all know what happened. TV5 no longer produces entertainment shows. Now, he’s relegated to playing supporting roles and worse, he’s been getting nothing lately but gay roles.
He first played a gay role in the indie hit, “Zombadings: Patayin sa Shokot si Remington,” where he was very good. We saw Martin more recently as one of the lead characters in the Regal comedy, “That Thing Called Tanga Na,” and he’s a cross-dresser who’s having an affair with a married man. Then we saw him in a supporting role as the effeminate assistant of Angelica Panganiban in Star Cinema’s “The Unmarried Wife,” where he had very few scenes. Now, he’s playing another transvestite role as Kaye in the Sinag Maynila Film Festival entry, “Ladyfish.”
He’s actually very effective in his role as a transwoman who is the victim of gender discrimination, but the movie itself is not something that would make him proud. It tries to convey the message that it’s very pro-LGBT, but the storytelling is very disjointed and lacks cohesion. What’s worse is that it has repulsive scenes, including one that involves a character having sex online with a goat and another scene where Martin is shown enjoying while his date JC Santos is urinating on his face.
Definitely, doing such scenes will not help forward his career at all and he should avoid doing them, and all trashy movies of this kind.