She is often referred to as the “goddess of Philippine show business”—beautiful, sophisticated and poised, with never a hair out of place. At age 48, she continues to gain the admiration of men and women, both young and old, for her classic features and quiet refinement.
But can you ever imagine Dawn Zulueta losing her cool? Screaming to the top of her lungs? Or even going rogue with a Nerf gun in her hands?
Unthinkable as these scenarios may be for the prized actress, Dawn can actually say she has been in them, and is even raring to show them to the public. Because thanks to “Meant to Beh”—her 2017 Metro Manila Film Festival entry as top comedian Vic Sotto’s leading lady—Dawn eagerly relished letting her hair down.
“It’s been 20 years since I last did a comedy, and that was also with Bossing [Vic’s showbiz moniker] in [the sitcom]‘OK Ka Fairy Ko’,” she recalled to The T-Zone. “So, to do this [movie]was very exciting for me because I very rarely do projects in comedy that are wacky. Madalas ang mga roles na ginagampanan ko masyadong serious.”
In Meant to Beh, Dawn plays the role of Andrea Balatbat, wife to Vic’s Antonio. A middle-aged couple, they try their best to raise three children in what seems like the perfect family set up. “Beh” is their term of endearment for one another, a millennial slang to “baby.”
Just like any couple, the Balatbats have their spats, especially given their very different personalities. Antonio is a bit rough around the edges, while Andrea is, well, “maarte,” as Dawn puts it.
As disagreements pile up, their marriage begins to fall apart, leaving a gap for new potential partners to step in.
The movie’s riotous trailer shows Dawn pulling her hair in frustration, exchanging amusing barbs in rapid speed with and just like her leading man, and going mad-woman-mode when she points a Nerf gun at Vic and the super sexy “other woman” played by Andrea Torres.
“You can tell from sneak peak that I was thrilled to do a project such as this para maiiba naman di’ba? It’s something that allows me to show the public another side of me, and to see that I am capable of doing other things and other talents. Hindi lang lagi sa drama.”
Dawn was quick to say, however, that despite the comedy, the movie shows real-life conflicts that surround contemporary families, and ultimately imparts lessons to couples on how to avoid growing apart, and how children play an important role in keeping the family together as well.
“The material is very fresh and very now and masarap for an artist like me to interpret a role like this the way I see it, and in a comedy set-up.”
Finally asked how she found working with Vic Sotto after two decades, and in a movie for the very first time, the ever-gracious Dawn—who also knows how to be a tease within her prim and proper ways—replied, “Enjoy na enjoy akong katrabaho si Bossing kasi the last time nga kaming nagtrabaho ang tagal na. Dalaga pa ako noon. Pero ganun na ganun pa rin siya. Actually, hindi nga siya tumatanda. Sabi ko sa kanya, yummy pa din siya. Tuwang tuwa naman siya.”
Meant to Beh is a joint production of OctoArts Films, APT Entertainment and M-Zet Productions, under the direction of Chris Martinez. Opening on Christmas Day as part of the MMFF, it also stars JC Santos, Daniel Matsunaga, Sue Ramirez, Gabbi Garcia, Ruru Madrid and Baby Baste.