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Longest-running noontime show continues Lenten tradition

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‘Eat Bulaga’ rolls out annual Holy Week drama specials beginning today

IN KEEPING with its tradition of bringing quality programming to Filipino viewers worldwide, the Philippines’ longest running noontime variety program “Eat, Bulaga!” will share stories of love, hope and redemption this Lenten season.

The six-episode special will kick-off today, Holy Monday, with “My Carinderia Girl” and “Haligi ng Pangarap,” directed by Linnet Zurbano and Adolf Alix Jr., respectively.

Vic Sotto, Maine Mendoza and Rita Avila in ‘Taray ni Tatay’

Starring Ruby Rodriguez and Kenneth Medrano, My Carinderia Girl tells the story of an older woman who falls in love with a much younger man. Despite the criticisms they receive, the two will prove love is accepting and knows no age. Joining this episode are Pauleen Luna, Luane Dy, Sinon Loresca, Tommy Penaflor and Kim Last.


In “Haligi ng Pangarap,” Alden Richards shares the small screen with Senator Vicente “Tito” Sotto, Joey de Leon and Tirso Cruz III in a story of a father whose faith, patience, love and dedication are tested when his son figures in a debilitating accident.

“It’s a story of acceptance and forgiveness. There’s no perfect family and we all go through difficult times in life. But if forgiveness is strong, we will learn to understand each other more,” Richards said.

The young actor added that he’s thankful to have finally been given the opportunity to work with Cruz. “Tito Tirso is one of the respected actors in the industry. Working with him is already an honor. I learned so much from him and I experienced firsthand his acting prowess. He’s such a great actor.”

Joey de Leon, ‘Haligi ng Pangarap’ director Adolf Alix Jr., Alden Richards
and Perla Bautista on the set of the Holy Week special

On Holy Tuesday, March 27, child star Ryzza Mae Dizon will showcase her acting chops in “A Daughter’s Love” opposite Superstar, Nora Aunor. This episode is about a grieving mother who went through depression. Her daughter will do everything to make sure that their family will weather the storm.

Dizon said this is one of her most challenging roles to date.

“At first I was really nervous because I might mess up with my lines, but Ms. Nora told me to relax. She guided me in my role and treated me as if I was her real daughter. I’m very happy that I got this chance to work with the Superstar,” she said.

Directed by Ricky Davao, “A Daughter’s Love” also stars Pia Guanio, Miss Millennial 2017 Julia Gonowon, Lui Manansala and Ana Roces.

Another treat for viewers on Holy Tuesday is Real Florido’s “Pamilya.” This family drama is about a prodigal son who returns home to his father. This episode is headlined by Ryan Agoncillo, Paolo Ballesteros, Baste, Jake Ejercito and veteran actor Ronaldo Valdez.

Meanwhile, on Holy Wednesday, March 28, comedic duo Jose Manalo and Wally Bayola, with Miggy Tolentino, take center stage in “Hating Kapatid,” a story of friendship and what one is willing to sacrifice to keep that special bond forever.

Manalo said the story somehow reflects his personal relationship with Bayola. He said they have known each other so well that he treats the latter as his own brother. “We finish each other’s sentences. We see each other every day but more than what you see on TV, we have deep trust and confidence on each other.”

LA Madridejos directs Hating Kapatid.

Capping the Eat, Bulaga! Lenten specials is Alix’s “Taray ni Tatay,” starring Vic Sotto and Maine Mendoza with Allan K, Jimmy Santos, Anjo Yllana, Rita Avila and with the special participation of Kendoll (Tenten). It tells the story of a single father who keeps his sexuality and other family secrets from his daughter.

Mendoza recalled that she had a hard time getting into her role after months without any acting projects. She said Sotto helped her find her A-game. “It was frustrating at first because there were scenes that I couldn’t on my own even if I was very focused and motivated. Bossing [Sotto] made me feel comfortable on the set and guided me in finding the story behind my character.”

Asked why viewers should watch this year’s Lenten Special, Mendoza said the stories reflect every day struggles and uncertainties of people. She said the episodes will serve as a reminder that there is hope, light and love even in the darkest hours and testing times.

“At a time when we often take for granted the love and trust of the people around us, it’s nice to pause sometimes and re-examine the life we live and just be thankful for the gift of family and friends.

Eat, Bulaga! airs weekdays at noon on GMA Network.

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