Saturday, October 3, 2009

Rain or shine PBB House opens its doors Sunday night

Typhoon Ondoy delayed constructions of the Pinoy Big Brother house and almost stalled the pictorial of the new housemates. As of press time, the damages, if any, wrought by the new super typhoon Pepeng, has not yet been determined. But rain or shine, the PBB house will open its doors on Sunday night to welcome its 12 new housemates as "Pinoy Big Brother: Double Up" begins airing on ABS-CBN.

"Hopefully, the PBB house won't get flooded by any forthcoming typhoon. But during typhoon Ondoy it didn't because it was located on a higher level than those areas around it that got flooded. We only had leaking roofs which we fixed already. I could say that the housemates would be safe just in case another strong typhoon hits Metro Manila. I think the PBB house is one of the safest place to be during natural and unnatural calamities," explained director Laurenti Dyogi who is also the Business Unit Head of the Pinoy Big Brother franchise.

"Pinoy Big Brother: Double Up" is the third serving of the popular reality-TV show "Pinoy Big Brother." And according to Lauren, it is to date, the most exciting compared to the past two regular editions.

"This is the longest, most tedious 'PBB' audition we ever had. We also had the most number of people who auditioned. We had more than 50,000 including the last two auditions we recently had in Japan and San Francisco," he said.

From 50,000, they had to trim the number down to 500, then 100 and their shortlist reached around 50 PBB housemate hopefuls until the final 12 who would be entering the PBB house on Sunday night. But that's just the first batch. For those who have followed PBB, it can be anticipated that more housemates would soon follow. And the new PBB tag-line "Double Up" is an obvious hint that this would be twice the fun (two houses too?), and twice the gimmickry and excitement!

"There's a lot of interesting characters among the housemates. Their ages range from 20 to 33 and they're a mix of single people, married people, single parent, a mother, a father, a conservative person and more. Actually when we presented this to management, they were very happy and excited as well," Lauren added.

The concept of "Double Up" too wasn't hard to be approved by Endemol, the owner of the Big Brother franchise, according to Lauren.

"As long as it's new they will like it. They trust us because we've done a lot of PBB editions and we've been doing it for years also. They liked the idea so we got approved," he said.

The prizes remain the same - a house and lot which can be converted into cash, P1 million, and a franchise of a water distilling business. There will still be "Pinoy Big Brother Uber" and "PBB Games Update" aside from the regular nightly airing of "PBB." Adding support to the show are weekly highlights inside the PBB house on "PBB Weekend Primetime" airing on Studio 23 every Saturday and Sunday at 6 p.m. starting on Oct. 10 and raw footages from the PBB house on "Pinoy Big Brother Streaming" at 1 p.m. starting on Oct. 12.

There's also a website PBB fanatics can visit,

"Pinoy Big Brother: Double Up" will still be hosted by Mariel Rodriguez, Bianca Gonzales and Toni Gonzaga.

"What makes the regular edition of PBB more exciting is because the housemates here are more dynamic because they are ordinary people. And this new batch of housemates really went to a grueling process before being accepted. So definitely this will be an exciting PBB edition to watch," Lauren exclaimed.

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'Spoiled Brat, the Movie' now on its second week

Now on its second week is "Yaya & Angelina: The Spoiled Brat Movie," and it's still drawing in the crowds in movie houses, despite the chaos and havoc brought about by Typhoon Ondoy. For this, the stars of the movie, Michael V. and Ogie Alcasid, wish to express their gratitude to friends and fans and the movie press for the support that they're giving their movie.

Michael and Ogie, and the other members of the cast of the movie, and the producers of course (GMA Films and APT Entertainment) were so happy to know not one of them was adversely affected by the typhoon.

To give back, Michael V., Ogie and Regine, did their share of charity work by donating to the relief funds and soliciting help from their sponsors. Regine herself did the grocery shopping (that's why she was absent from "SOP" last Sunday and even while she was suffering from migraine) and later brought the goodies for distribution to typhoon victims in Old Balara, QC, according to Ogie.

To be able to help more the victims, Ogie is now organizing a big concert at the Araneta Coliseum. "We intend to hold it on Nov. 14, and right now I'm trying to enlist the participation of our performers and actors and actresses from both ABS-CBN and GMA-7," Ogie told entertainment writers during a recent thanksgiving presscon held at Gerry's Grill.

Entitled "Kaya Natin Ito!" the concert will be directed by Rowell Santiago. Ogie said he hopes to get the support and commitment of OPM artists for this fundraising show. The proceeds will be donated to the Philippine National Red Cross for the benefit of the typhoon victims.

"Sana makakuha rin kami ng maraming sponsors. Araneta Coliseum is helping us, by the way," Ogie concluded.

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Reunion of Sampaguita stars

It was another reunion of Sampaguita stars when Liberty Ilagan (now Mrs. Carlos Lardizabal) celebrated her natal day recently. The dinner party was held at the residence of Asia's Queen of Song Pilita Corrales in New Manila, Quezon City.

Liberty's family (except her lawyer husband who couldn't attend because he was sick) was present to help her celebrate her special day. Her two daughters Happy and Soeng (she was with husband) were there, and so were Liberty's cousins and other relatives. Liberty's sister Vicky I. Rousotte who is based abroad was there, and so was another sister, Maria Fe I. Gibbs, mother of singer-actor Janno Gibbs. Of course, Fe's husband Ronaldo Valdez was also present.

Liberty's colleagues and friends from showbiz came to wish her well, among them Marichu Maceda, Pempe Rodrigo (the ever efficient Girl Friday of the Balik Samahan group who tirelessly inform everyone of any event concerning them), Amalia Fuentes, Susan Roces, Delia Razon, Gloria Sevilla, Caridad Sanchez, Boots Anson-Roa, Imelda Ilanan, Marissa Delgado, Daria Ramirez, Elizabeth Ramsey, Amparo Lucas, Encarnita Abieera, Minda Morena, Boy Roxas, Lollie Mara, Anna Ledesma, Annabelle Santiago, Letty Hahns, Tess Nicolas, Linda Tan, Doris Lopez, Julie Ang, Precy Garcia, Malou Zamora, Vicky Anson-White, Vicky Gaspar, Merlin Ikida, Menchu Bantos, Nancy Coo, Elizabeth Poe, Pepito Rodriguez, Ramil Rodriguez, Charlie Davao, Lito Legaspi, and many more.

Other friends and Balik Samahan members like Barbara Perez, Robert Arevalo, Liza Lorena, Perla Bautista, and Zara Calvin couldn't come because of prior engagements. Photog Virgie Balatico who is a friend of most of the veteran stars was there to do the shoots. She was impressed by the friendship forged by these stars which has remained steadfast through the years. "Ibang-iba talaga ang samahan at pagkakaibigan ng mga artista noon," Virgie said. "Hindi nagbago ang kanilang kabaitan, tapat silang magmahal sa mga kaibigan. Hanggang ngayon magkakaibigan pa rin sila."

Though belatedly, we wish Libay happy birthday and many more birthdays to come!

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Tidbits: Happy b-day greetings on Oct. 4 go to former Sen. Francisco "Kit" Tatad, "Master Showman" German "Kuya Germs" Moreno, Pagsanjan Mayor E.R. Ejercito, Matet de Leon, Pet Aquitania, Bon Arambulo, Philip S. Tan, Joseph L. Benitez, Editha Lim Manansala, Librada Gutierrez of DSWD, Atty. Jose D. Monasterial Jr., Mrs. Lani Pelayo, Sabria Chantal M. Prado, Winnie Javillo of West Covina, CA, Malou Pamaran Zamora, and MB's Angela L. Morales.


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