I enjoyed brushing up on my French with Billy Crawford. He was surprised that “je parle Français.” After his victory in the French edition of “Dancing with the Stars,” he is flying back to Paris next month with his wife Coleen Garcia and their baby, Amari.
“I will be promoting my album all over France. I will be shuttling back and forth from Manila to Paris and playing it by ear,” Billy pointed out. “If a good offer comes my way in France, I’m up for it, but I won’t turn my back on my work here. Manila will always be my home.”
When I asked for his comment about the cake controversy of his “LOL” cohost, Alex Gonzaga, Billy said, “I’m sure Alex has realized what she has done. But there’s no excuse for it. Let’s just move on from the issue, instead of feasting on it.”
After Alex apologized to the waiter, she ought to know that she can’t always have her cake and eat it, too.
Latest streaming platform from Viva
Boss Vic del Rosario and his Viva team never rest on their laurels. So, after the incredible success of Vivamax (VM) with 6 million subscribers and counting, they are launching Viva Prime (VP) on Jan. 29.
The edgiest streaming platform in the Philippines will be available worldwide. Subscription is super affordable, at P45 (with ads) or P99 (without ads). The top honchos of VP, Vincent and Val del Rosario, Ronan de Guzman and Paul Basinilio welcomed mga “Ka-Viva” in the grand media con.
According to them, the risqué content will be reserved for VM, while VP will cater to all ages and sensibilities. But Vincent clarified that VM is not purely adult content. “If you dig deeper, you will find a treasure trove of classic Pinoy films and blockbusters,” he explained. “Na-hype up lang ang adult content because it’s a hot topic online.”
For its opening salvo, VP will stream the hit movie, “Maid in Malacañang.” The much-awaited “Rain in España” is slated to be streamed in March. Just like in VM, VP is committed to release fresh material weekly. It’s definitely the stream, este, cream of the crop.
‘V-Day vibe’ from Bela-Marco film
Valentine’s Day beckons. Do you know where your heart is? Get that “V-Day vibe” by watching “Spellbound,” showing in cinemas on Feb. 1. Directed by Jalz Zarate, it is Viva’s adaptation of the Korean blockbuster topbilled by Bela Padilla and Marco Gumabao.
In the movie, Bela plays Yuri, a ghost magnet after she survives an accident. Yuri feels that she’s better off alone because of her situation. But a magician (portrayed by Marco) just might change Yuri’s outlook.
Let Bela and Marco’s tandem restore your belief in love’s magic despite its tricks. The movie’s tagline ought to be “Abracadabra, mahal kita.”
Here are quotes from Bela (B), Marco (M) and Jalz (J):
B: The scaredy cat in me accepted this project even if its horror because I was thrilled to reprise the role of one of my faves, Son Ye-jin. I got to tick that off my bucket list.
M: If I had magical powers in real life, I want to make Kobe Bryant appear and ask him how he came up with the “Mamba mentality” long before he became an NBA superstar.
J: We stayed true to the Korean version, but added Pinoy touches to it. Since the original version was shown in 2011,we updated our interpretation.
B: Due to budget constraints, it will be like comparing apples and oranges when we talk about our film and its original Korean version. But we Pinoys know how to make the most of what we have. Magaling tayo sa para-paraan.
M: I felt the pandemic more in 2022 than in 2020 because God removed some people in my life last year. I am beginning to realize why He made that happen.
‘It’ girls and boys in coming-of-age tale
Every summer has its story. Just like in “Tag-init” (now streaming on Vivamax), where a young boy transitions to being a man. Directed by Joey Reyes, it stars Franki Russell, Yen Durano, Clifford Pusing, Ali Asistio, Marc Acueza and Aerol Carmelo.
Aside from the production’s compelling story, it showcases the gorgeous physique of the stars who are all heat, este “it” girls and boys. If you “abs” it, flaunt it.
Here are quotes from Franki (F), Clifford (C), Yen (Y) and Direk Joey (J):
F: I am now comfy with being called an “object of desire.” As long as the viewers are entertained, then my job is done.
C: When I did a BL (boys’ love) series, I had to adjust. I’m glad I’m now paired off with a girl. In real life, I prefer older women who think and feel young.
Y: The character I play taught me not to seek validation from others and learn to say no when necessary.
J: Our movie will show the difference between having sex and making love. It presents two choices in relationships—to be used or to be the user. It will make us look at kept women in a different light.
F: Direk Joey told me that acting is just like dancing. You must be in harmony and follow the right steps. It’s like one elaborate choreography.
J: Although box-office success and awards are rewarding, both are not that important to me. What matters is if I have made people happy in my own little way.
‘Underage’ role a step up for Elijah Alejo
After playing kontrabida in the Kapuso drama “Primadonnas,” Elijah Alejo is now a bida in the remake of the hit ‘80s movie, “Underage” (airs weekdays on GMA’s Afternoon Prime). Her time has come. Hallelujah, Elijah.
Here’s my chat with Elijah:
How are you adjusting from playing kontrabida to bida?
It’s quite a shift. I talked to our director and writers about my character, Chynna. When I got to know her through their perspective, I shared my thoughts about her until we were able to form my characterization.
In what ways can you relate to Chynna?
Both of us are bubbly. When people are sad, I want to serve as their “powerbank” to perk them up.
What do you find hard to understand about boys?
Why some boys make a move on girls, then chicken out at the last minute. And when a boy ghosts a girl after she says yes to be his girlfriend.