By Ronald Constantino
MORE THAN – Highspeed noted yesterday that decades back, three major movie studios – Seiko, Regal, Viva – were star builders. Today TV stations took over the task of making and packaging stars.
Highspeed this time focuses on Viva with Boss Vic del Rosario on top, and Baby Gil as PR.
Viva built up Sharon Cuneta, Regine Velasquez, and Sarah Geronimo. They were more than pretty faces…loaded with acting and singing gifts, too. Box-office actresses and bestsellers in the music industry, recording and concert artists, “Viva Artists” they are called.
OTHERS – Other Viva Artists: Vina Morales, Anne Curtis, Cristine Reyes, Robin Padilla, Gary Estrada, Rustom Padilla (yes, BB. Gandanghari), Raymond Lauchengco, Edu Manzano, Herbert Bautista, Bobby Andrews.
Actually, Viva still discovers and build-up stars … at times in tandem with ABS-CBN and Star Cinema.
Think of Nadine Lustre, James Reid, Yassi Pressman, Brent Jackson, Andi Eigenmann, Vice Ganda.
Viva continues to mount concerts here and abroad, release recordings, and distributes foreign and local films.
‘VIVA LOOK’ – At its height in the ‘80s, there was that “Viva Look” in most of its movies. Glossy, sleek, “mukhang mayaman.” Then the late wife of Boss Vic, Mina Salvador, selected the scripts, many of them from “komiks,” meaning pre-sold.
Nora Aunor, Vilma Santos, Boyet de Leon, Lorna Tolentino, Hilda Koronel, Phillip Salvador made some of their best films for Viva. Directors included Ishmael Bernal, Butch Perez, Marilou Abaya, Laurice Guillen, Eddie Garcia, Danny Zialcita, Leroy Salvador, Maning Borlaza.