Sarah Lahbati

LAHBATI. Topbills the afternoon soap, “Kokak.”

WHO are the most promising stars-in-the-making for 2012? More than a baker’s dozen tried mightily to make their mark last year—but, some of them fell short, despite the breaks that came their way.

They included the otherwise promising Enrique Gil, who was stuck in a stultifying role as the other niño bonito in “Budoy.” Also less than stellar has been the showing of Alex Gonzaga in the plum ingenue role in “P.S., I Love You.”

On the other hand, Xian Lim got a lot of star-making mileage out of “My Binondo Girl.” When the series started, he was just one of Kim Chiu’s three consorts (along with Jolo Revilla and Matteo Guidicelli). Truth to tell, Xian was the least known of the three—but, by the time the series ended, it was his character who had gotten married to Kim.

Another young talent who chalked up good credits in 2011 is child actress, Xyriel Manabat, who figured strongly in several TV hits, like “100 Days to Heaven” and “Ikaw Ay Pag-ibig”—plus the movie, “A Mother’s Story.”


In fact, some viewers have been mounting a campaign to “reward” her for her fine showing, by way of her own TV or film starrer this year. Should that exciting prospect materialize, however, we hope that it casts her in the role of a real child—no more precociously wise and mature monologues, please!

He isn’t a new star, but Gerald Anderson’s career has definitely benefited from his current TV starrer, “Budoy,” and his recent film with Sarah Geronimo, “Won’t Last A Day Without You.” It’ll be interesting to see what his mother studio will do with him after “Budoy” comes to its imminent conclusion.

Reality check, however:  Some special-education experts have critiqued the believability of the series’ dramatization of the life and prospects of its retarded protagonist, especially the amazing “savant” turn that his mind has been made to take.

Let’s hope that the show and its star can weather that gathering storm, which could dim the glow of Gerald’s otherwise burgeoning career.

Plum role

For her part, Julia Montes has a lot to smile about this year, because she’s been tapped to play the plum role of the ingenue lead in the current soap, “Walang Hanggan.” This is a big break for Julia—and quite unexpected, since she used to play a kontrabida role on TV, and very few young villain types are able to rise above that “defining” stereotype and get to play protagonist roles.

Talent search winner, Sarah Lahbati, is also a newcomer, but she’s already proven her worth as a leading lady on TV by way of her performance in the afternoon soap, “Kokak.”

On the international scene, the US TV show, “Early Today,” has a new host in Fil-Am talent and looker, Veronica dela Cruz. It isn’t easy making it in the highly competitive news and public affairs field in the States, but Veronica is doing just that.

To these and other promising comers, may 2012 gift you with more opportunities to prove your worth, and thus emerge as true-blue Stars of Tomorrow—today!

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