Jun Urbano, popularly known as Mr. Shooli, dies at 84
Updated Dec. 3, 2023, 2:19 p.m.
Manuel “Jun” Urbano Jr., best known for his creation and portrayal of Mr. Shooli in his political satire show “Mongolian Barbecue” in the late 1980s, has died. He was 84.
The veteran actor-director’s death was confirmed by his son, Banots Urbano, via the latter’s Facebook page on Saturday, Dec. 2.
“I will cherish this moment for the rest of my life. I love you so much dad, until we meet again,” the younger Urbano said, showing a photo of him and his dad dressed up as Mr. Shooli.
Urbano succumbed to ruptured abdominal aneurysm, according to his grandson Angelo Publico.
The late actor also had chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and underwent a quintuple heart bypass in 2018.
Jun is the eldest son of the late National Artist for Film Manuel Conde. Aside from his acting career, he also directed over 2,000 TV commercials in a career that lasted for 40 years.
Jun was also this year’s recipient of the prestigious Gawad Plaridel, which is given to Filipino media practitioners who have excelled in any of the media and performed with the highest level of professional integrity in the interest of public service.
The prestigious award, given by the University of the Philippines, honors Filipino media practitioners who have excelled in their chosen field with professional integrity and a high sense of public service.
In his acceptance speech, Urbano appealed to Filipinos to “bring back this country’s glory, put it back to its rightful place at the pedestal.”
Addressing the younger members of the audience, he said: “You are more than the smartphones and gadgets you are holding. Use your knowledge to improve the country.”
It was in the 1980s when Urbano created Mr. Shooli for his TV show “Mongolian Barbecue.”
The Mr. Shooli brand of comedy draws much from the character’s constant confusion about Filipino traits, practices or idiosyncrasies, with politicians among the usual targets.
Also working behind the camera as his father did, Urbano wrote and directed “Juan Tamad at Mr. Shooli: Mongolian Barbecue,” “M.O.N.A.Y.” (Misteyks Opda Neyson Adres Yata) and “Voltes V.”
He had also worked as an advertising creative and directed an extensive list of commercials.
Interviewed by Inquirer Entertainment when he turned 80 on June 8, 2020, he confided feeling that he was “about to board [my final flight] soon.”
“I feel that I’m about to board my final flight soon,” Jun told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in a July 2020 interview, a month after his 81st birthday.
“I still have a lot of dream projects to make, but I feel that my body isn’t as strong as it used to be.”
Urbano then was busy on a film with a working title “Now Na (Right Now),” which was about “how a millennial, who was born to Filipino parents but raised in the United States, learned to love the Philippines as a country.”
Shocked by his passing
Aside from undergoing a quintuple heart bypass in 2012, he was also diagnosed with abdominal aortic aneurysm four years later.
“We were all shocked by his passing… We did our best to help him manage his condition. As for his sons, I guess they have all accepted that Papa is gone now but they are still processing what happened,” Publico said.
Urbano is survived by his four sons and grandchildren. Details of the wake and burial will be announced Sunday.