Cesar Montano won’t leave acting

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LHAR SANTIAGO

LHAR SANTIAGO

PLUS: 2017 looking good for Juancho Trivino and Valeen Montenegro

The oath-taking of Cesar Montano as the new COO of Tourism Promotions Board (TPB) was held a couple of days before Christmas. The following day, he was already with the employees of the government agency for their Christmas and thanksgiving party.

To say that Cesar is excited about his post is an understatement. He is so prepared for the job. He made his own study immediately after learning that President Duterte was appointing him to the position. He comes well-prepared that he can’t wait to share his ideas with the members of the TPB board of directors.

Cesar Montano

Cesar Montano

“I have actually met the members of the board. Maganda naman ang naging pag-uusap namin. I listened to them. I also want to know how the agency is doing, the plans and the actions to be taken. I should know if my ideas jive with theirs. I’m so happy na magkakasundo kami and we are moving towards the same vision to improve the tourism industry in the country,” Cesar told Showbuzz in an exclusive interview.


Although tourism promotions is not new to Cesar, his position poses a big challenge for him. “When I did Panaghoy Sa Suba, we were able to attract a lot of local tourists to Bohol because the movie showed the beauty and culture of my province. But that was only Bohol. Now, it’s the whole country that we have to sell and we want to be really successful. So me and the members of the board, and even other people who have brilliant ideas, should collaborate. As long as it will help in promoting tourism in the Philippines, we are open to suggestions.”

One strategy that Cesar would like to utilize, coming from the movie industry, is what he calls film tourism. By this, he will be inviting film producers, both local and foreign to use different parts of the Philippines as location for their shoots. Of course, incentives will be offered to the producers to entice them. Among the incentives are tax discounts, cheaper labor, easier access to different offices for permits and, of course, the beautiful locations and the hospitality of the people.

“I have actually talked to my producer in Hollywood who did my international movie, The Great Raid. He is now into pre-production stage of a movie with location requirements that fits Palawan, Boracay and Bohol. I told him he can have his location here and promised him we will help in facilitating all their requirements. So far, our talk is getting better. They might just decide to do their shoot here. Imagine the mileage and the exposure that our country will get,” Cesar enthused.

Even if he is now holding a government position, he doesn’t discount the possibility of still doing movies. If the film will help boost the country’s tourism, he is open to don his actor’s hat again. He is quick to say though that right now, his top priority is his work at TPB. “I am 100-percent committed to my new job. I accepted this position so I have to give my best here. As I have said, I love acting, this is my passion, but for now, it’s my job in TPB that I need to focus on,” the actor explained.

As of now, Cesar spends his time talking to people in relation to his job. He wants his work translated into good results. He hasn’t reported to his office yet because he is busy with meetings. “I will be reporting to my office after the holidays. By that time, my hands will be so full with a lot of things to attend to and accomplish.”

Paolo Ballesteros

Paolo Ballesteros

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2017 will be a great year. That’s what Kapuso stars Valeen Montenegro and Juancho Trivino feel when it comes to their careers.

Come January 4, the movie Mang Kepweng Returns, which they did with Vhong Navarro and co-Kapuso artists, Louise Delos Reyes, Balang and Kim Domingo will open in several theaters throughout the country. For Valeen and Juancho, that ushers a good year filled with good projects for them.

Both Juancho and Valeen say they can look back at 2016 with gratitude. In Juancho’s case, it was this year that saw his rise from obscurity. From being a struggling unknown, he was given a role in Little Nanay, a role big enough for him to be noticed by his GMA bosses. From being a support, he was elevated to leading man status as he played Louise Delos Reyes’ partner in Magkaibang Mundo. He is also seen almost everyday co-hosting Unang Hirit.

“I have so much to be thankful for. I am just happy that GMA continues to trust me with good roles in big projects. I get good opportunities to show my talent. I wish that 2017 would be more fulfilling for me in my career,” Juancho said.

The coming year, indeed, looks very promising for Juancho. Aside from Mang Kepweng, he is in the cast of a hugeGMA project for primetime. “I play a very important role in Destined To Be Yours, the first primetime series of Alden Ri­chards and Maine Mendoza. I’m so excited about this project. Sana lang I don’t get bashed. Whatever their fans will see in the character I will be playing, role lang po ‘yun,” Juancho said, smiling.

For Valeen, 2016 was a mixture of good breaks and controversy. Her name was dragged in the separation of Ciara Sotto and her husband Jojo Oconer. Valeen was named in rumors as the cause of the split-up. That did not dampen Valeen’s determination though, in making good with her career. She ignored the controversy and stayed focused on her work.

“’Yung mga nangyari ay nangyari because there’s a reason. I chose not to dignify yung mga negative. Hindi na ako magrereklamo. 2016’s still a good year for me. I have Sunday Pinasaya, I have Bubble Gang, I have Mang Kepweng opening on January 4, so generally, 2016 was so kind, so generous to me in terms of projects.”

For 2017, Valeen hopes to have more projects. “Hangga’t kaya pa ng sche­dule,” she beamed.

 Showbuzz with Jingle

Showbuzz with Jingle

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Every now and then, Showbuzz gets questions from people asking where this certain star is now. Most of them asked about stars from the ‘70s and the ‘80s. It’s not only once that Showbuzz was asked where former child star Jingle of that era is. There is now an answer to that question as Showbuzz bumped into Jingle in a restaurant in Quezon City. It was actually former young star Lala Aunor who pulled Showbuzz upong entering the restaurant, leading to the meet up with Jingle.

From Jingle herself, Showbuzz learned that she is happily married to a doctor and they have three beautiful daughters, one of them an international flight attendant. Jingle and her husband are based in Zamboanga City where her husband practices.

Jingle can be remembered in the many TV shows that she did, like Yan Ang Misis Ko and Family Tree. Is she still open for a showbiz comeback? “Pwede pa ba ko? Hindi na yata ako sanay!” she answered laughing.

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SHORTS… Among the eight entries in the ongoing Metro Manila Film Festival, four movies fared well in the first few days of showing. According to MMFF spokesperson Noel Ferrer, they are (in alphabetical order) Ang Babae Sa Septic Tank 2, Die Beautiful, Seklusyon and Vince & Kath & James.

… Kapuso hearthrob Derrick Monasterio was guest in a masquerade ball/ Christmas party of a private company. He was asked to wear a mask and so he did but it seems he cannot remain incognito for long. As soon as he entered the venue, wearing his mask at that, people recognized him and ran to him to take selfies with him.

… Kapuso stars will be in full force for the traditional GMA New Year Countdown at the MOA grounds on the evening of December 31. This countdown will be one of the biggest assembly of Kapuso stars. Among the hosts are Julie Ann San Jose, Betong Sumaya and Alden Richards.

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