Rewind: the year was 1973 (Photos)

One of Ate Vi’s banner year was 1973. Not only she earned her first best actress award for 1972’s Dama De Noche (FAMAS), she established herself as the most bankable actress of the year. Hit after hit, she broke all box office records!

1973 Film List

FILMS - OPHELIA AND PARISOphelia at Paris -– Vi co-starred with Victor Laurel ; directed by Celia Diaz Laurel; Victor Laurel Productions (Jan)

FILMS - Now And Forever 3Now and Forever – Vi– With Edgar Mortiz directed by Ishmael Bernal; TIIP Valentine Special (Feb)

FILMS - Tsismosang Tindera 2Tsismosang Tindera -– Vi With Jay Ilagan, Ike Lozada, German Moreno directed by Emmanuel H Borlaza; TIIP “Ang naglalako ng bilasang isda at sariwang balita” (Feb)

FILM - Lipad Darna Lipad 1973Lipad, Darna, Lipad -– Vi With Gloria Romero, Celia Rodriguez, Liza Lorena; directed by Emmanuel Borlaza, Elwood Perez, Joey Gosiengfiao; TIIP 23 (Mar)

FILMS - Carinosa 3Cariñosa -– Vi With Manny DeLeon, yoyoy Villmae, Chanda Romero, Angelito; driected by Romy Susara; TIIP 05 (May)

FILM - Dyesebel at ang Mahiwagang Kabibe 1973Dyesebel at ang Mahiwagang Kabibe – Vi With Divina Valencia, Mina Aragon, Rossana Marquez, Romeo Miranda; directed by Emmanuel H Borlaza TTP Tagalog Ilang-Ilang Productions; Winner!!! 8th Manila Film Festival Top Grosser Best Musical Picture. (Jun)

FILMS - Anak ng Aswang 4Anak ng Aswang -– Vi With Gloria Romero, Daisy Romouldez, Rossana Marquez, Lucita Soriano, Edgar Mortiz, Leopoldo Salcedo, Nick Romano, German Moreno; Roma Films directed by Romy V Susara (Sep)

FILMS - Wonder Vi (1973)Wonder Vi -– Vi With George Estregan, Marissa Delgado, Nick Romano; directed by Arsenio Boots Bautista JE Productions (Sep)

FILMS - MARIA CINDERELLAMaria Cinderella -– Vi With Jay Ilagan, Blanca Gomez,, Florence Aguilar, Romeo Miranda; directed by Emmanuel H. Borlaza; TIIP Entry to 43 Quezon City Film Festival (Oct)

FILMS - Darna and the Giants 7Darna and the Giants –- Vi With Helen Gamboa, Loretta Marquez, Rossana Marquez, Divina Valencia, Romeo Miranda, Dondon Nakar directed by Emmanuel Borlaza TIIP (Dec) – RV, (READ MORE)

Maria Cinderella at ang Pilipino Art

Isang pelikulang fantasy ang handog ng TIIP para sa nalalapit na 4th Quezon City Film Festival. Ito’y ang Maria Cinderella na isa na namang tambalan nina Vilma at Jay. napag-alaman naming hindi isang karaniwang fantasy ang nasabing pelikula. Manapa’y bibigyang-kulay nila at ningning ang tunay na Sining-Pilipino (Pilipino Art) in the serye na kahit na itanghal ito sa ibang bansa ay makapagbibigay inpormasyon sa mga foreigners. Ang location maging ang set ay talaga namang ating-atin. Ang bagay na ito ay isa sa mga nais mangyari ni Atty. Laxa, lalo na kung sa bakuran nila o oufit gagawin ang isang pelikula. Naging tradisyon na ng TIIP ang pagbibigay ng prestihiyosang movies sa publiko. Sa loob ng labingtatlong taong nagdaan ay napatunayan na nila iyon. Katunayan, sila ngayon ang sinasabing starmaker. Ang Maria Cinderella ay isang big budgeted movie. At alam ba ninyo na sa pelikulang ito ay nagbalik ang matagal na rin namang nawawalang bituin na si Blanca Gomez! Bukod kay Blanca, kasama rin nina Vilma at Jay Ilagan sina Geena Zablan, Janet Clemente, Janina Frias, Ike Lozada, German Moreno. Kabituin sina Jingle, Beth Manlongat, Don Don Nakar, Jon Jon Salvador, Maria Rosie Jico at Winnie Santos. Narito rin sina Joseph Sytangco, Elizabeth Vaugh, Greg Lozano at Dave Esguerra. Si Maning Borlaza ang siyang nagdirehe.

Pagkatapos ng pelikulang ito, nabanggit din ni Atty Laxa na magkakaroon ng ng iba-ibang leading man si Vilma. Ang bibigyan ng pagkakataon ay iyong mga walang gaanong pangalan. Sa gayong paraaan nga naman mabibigyan pa nila ng break iyong mga may kakayahan ngunit wala lamang pagkakataong maipakita ang kanilang talent. May seven fairies ang Maria Cinderella. At itoy’s binubuo ng pitong naggagandahang starlet! Nasabi rin ni Vilma na nang mabasa niya ang kabuuan ng kasaysayan ng Maria Cinderella ay natuwa siya pagka’t iyan ang uri ng storya na pang-fantasy na matagal na niyang ibig gawin. Sa side ni Jay Ilagan, isang karangalan umano ang muli nilang pagsasama sa isang pelikula ni Vi. Sana’y higit na ngayong maibigan ng mga manonood kaysa una namaing ginawang pelikula ni Vi – sabi ni Jay. Simula na nga ang puspusang pagsisiyuting ng Maria Cinderella at sa husay at tiyaga naming nakikita… walang dudang ito’y isa na namang panlaban ng TIIP sa mga makakasabay niya sa nalalapit na Pista ng Pelikulang Pilipino sa lunsod ng Quezon. At isa na namang karangalan para kay Vilma Santos! – Deo Fajardo Jr., Topstar Magazine, No. 73, 14 Sep 1973

FILMS - Ang hiwaga ni Maria Cinderella 2

Filmography: Ang Hiwaga Ni Maria Cinderella (1973)

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Basic Information: Directed: Emmanuel H. Borlaza; Cast: Vilma Santos, Jay Ilagan, Blanca Gomez, Geena Zablan, Janet Clemente, Ike Lozada, German Moreno, Jannie Frias, Jingle, Winnie Santos, Maricel, Jonjon Salvador, Mary Rose Junco, Jerry Jackson, Dondon Nakar, Florence Aguilar, Romeo Miranda, Max Alvarado, Matimtiman Cruz, Joseph Sytangco, Elizabeth Vaughn; Original Music: Tito Arevalo; Cinematography: Tommy Marcelino

Plot Description:   Filipino version of Cinderella.

Film Achievement:   “…Jay Ilagan and Vilma Santos did twelve films with commercial success except for one, their most critically acclaimed film, Sister Stella L. Total Number of films with Vilma Santos – 12 (Inspiration, Ang Konduktora, Tsismosang Tindera, Ang Hiwaga ni Mariang Cinderella, Tatlong Mukha ni Rosa Vilma, Paano Ba Ang Mangarap, Sister Stella L, Coed, Leron Leron Sinta, Ito Ang Pilipino, Remembrance, Karugtong Ng Kahapon)…” – RV (READ MORE)

“…Borlaza gave Vilma Santos her very first best actress, winning the 1972 FAMAS for via Dama De Noche. He is also credited in narrowing the popularity gap between her and the musical era’s darling of the 70s, Nora Aunor. Total Number of Films in our list of VSR’s Top 50 films = 4 (#10 Lipad Darna Lipad 1973, #32 Dyesebel at ang Mahiwagang Kabibe 1973, #48 Darna and the Giants 1973, #49 Dama De Noche 1972)…” – RV (READ MORE)

Film Review: “……Besides teaming up with Edgar Mortiz during her teen years, Vilma Santos also starred and appeared in many movies opposite other leading men…Jay Ilagan — Inspiration (1972), Ang Konduktora (1972), Tatlong Mukha ni Rosa Vilma (1972), Tsismosang Tindera (1973), Ang Hiwaga ni Maria Cinderella (1973)…” – Simon Santos (READ MORE)

“…His films lack the arthouse style and social relevance that critics loves most in a Brocka or Bernal films but who cares about the critics when the paying public loves them. And the producers demand his service, from Doc Perez of Sampaguita Pictures, Atty. Esperidion Laxa of Tagalog Ilang Ilang Productions and later on, Vic Del Rosario of Viva Films and Lily Monteverde of Regal Films. Clearly, his films exists with one purpose, to entertain the masses not to depress or remind them with the country’s sad fate of economy or the below poverty line lives of many. The success of the Vilma-Borlaza films gave Vilma Santos versatility and preparation to a more serious acting career. It also narrowed the popularity gap between her and the musical era’s darling of the 70s, Nora Aunor. These are perhaps, the most significant contributions of Emmanuel Borlaza to Vilma’s career. Vilma who was considered only second to Nora couldn’t matched her singing talent and so, Borlaza countered this lack of singing with films that showcased Vilma’s acting versatility…” – RV (READ MORE)