Boots is busy as a–Lola B
Most actors in their 60s or 70s are either retired or appear on-cam only occasionally, usually in small, “cameo” roles. In very striking contrast, Boots Anson-Roa is busy as a bee, with three regular shows this season, on different TV channels.
On GMA 7’s “Princess in the Palace,” she plays the stepmother of the president of the country, portrayed by Eula Valdez. On TV5’s “Mga Kuwento ni Lola Basyang,” she’s an updated, “cool” and “connected” reincarnation (as Lola B) of the well-loved storyteller character. And, on ABS-CBN’s “Walang Iwanan,” she recently concluded her scenes as the lead child character’s strict but loving adoptive granny.
It’s a full taping schedule for any senior star, but like Eddie Garcia, Boots is known in the “industry” for her scheduling skill and reliability, so producers are definitely not stressed.
Besides, as Boots’ friends and colleagues know only too well, her TV acting schedule isn’t taking up all of the hours of her usual work week. She still stays on top of the many important and essential services that the Movie Workers Welfare Foundation (Mowelfund) provides for hard-up TV-film workers and their families, and she heads PRIME, the Pete Roa Integrated Media Endeavors Foundation. In addition, she has her many other advocacies, and makes sure that her family and friends don’t feel like afterthoughts in her life.
Aside from its prosperous perks, Boots’ work schedule as a very busy actress encourages her to keep stretching her thespic horizons. All of her assigned characters are grandmothers, but what a merry and bracing contrast they provide.
On “Walang Iwanan,” she plays it strict because she wants her young ward to toughen up for any and all eventualities. On “Lola Basyang,” she’s perky, funny and knows how to connect with kids and speak their language via the new media.
Boots’ lola character on “Princess in the Palace” is her biggest “stretch” this season, because it’s more contrary than predictably sweet and obliging.
In fact, she’s one of the show’s characters who are there to provide tension and “problems” to keep Eula and her adoptive daughter, played by Ryzza Mae Dizon, on their toes—and on their guard.
Boots’ character may be Eula’s stepmother, but she uses her lofty and connected position for personal and profitable ends—not the usual role associated with the actress’ signature “image!”
Given this range and “stretch,” Boots has no trouble keeping her different characters separate in her mind and heart, so we hope that her next acting assignment will be even more unconventional and challenging, to keep her creative momentum going!
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