Birthday galores at ABS-CBN

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Not just a matinee idol.

At first glance, he looks every inch a matinee idol. And he is. But Piolo Pascual is not just a matinee idol. He is also an excellent actor.

The acting bug first bit Piolo when he was a student at the University of Sto. Tomas. "For the longest time, I was looking for my calling," Piolo recalls. Acting proved to be his most enduring and fulfilling passion.

I was looking for my little corner," Piolo relates. "For me, it’s all about fulfilling a dream."

One of Piolo’s dreams has now come true. He is paired for the first time in a movie (titled Milan) with ABS-CBN drama princess Claudine Barretto. "Working with Claudine in Milan is pure heaven for me," says Piolo. "She is very professional and puts so much love and passion in her work. We encountered many difficulties while shooting the film but Claudine breezed through like a seasoned pro."

While shooting Milan, Piolo and Claudine caused a commotion in some of their locations in Italy. Many of the Pinoy OFWs recognized and mobbed them. An Italian paper quoted a fan of Claudine as having said, "she’s like the Sharon Stone of the Philippines" while Piolo was called by an Italian writer "the Richard Gere of the orient – because of his brooding looks."

I really felt good after reading that," shares Piolo. "It meant that the Italians have taken notice of what we were doing."

Star Cinema’s Milan will open on Feb. 4 theaters nationwide.
* * *
Happy Birthday to the following ABS-CBN Talent Center artists.

Juddha Paolo made waves last year in Tabing Ilog and in the hit comedy film Mr. Suave. "It’s heen a good 2003 for me," says Juddha who is now seeing Swiss-Filipina model Nikki Mueller. His birthday wish? "That I won’t have any work on my brithday so I could celebrate it with a party!" Juddha hosts ABS-CBN’s new show To The Max with Rica Peralejo and Marvin Agustin. He is also included in the January Body Portfolio of Metro Magazine.

Meanwhile, Glaiza de Castro just turned 16. She is now part of Berks and is a member of the young-diva-group Full Circle that performs every Sunday on ASAP. Another January celebrator is model-turned-actor Bryan Tan. His resumé includes appearances on Tabing Ilog and Basta’t Kasama Kita and in commercials for beer, conditioner, telecom, snacks and many more. He is also an active member of PMAP (Professional Models Association of the Philippines).

Last but not the least is Nikki Valdez, who just turned 25. "I’m still adjusting! It was just like yesterday when I celebrated my 18th birthday and now I’m 25!" says Nikki. She is very happy where her career is right now. "I have two shows in ABS-CBN and I couldn’t be more blessed," she adds." Nikki, who is part of OK Fine Whatever and Tanging Ina plans to further concentrate on her singing career.

She also reveals that she has a blooming lovelife. She’s seeing a Fil-Canadian young man nowadays. "He’s Pinoy and he grew up in Canada. We have so much in common and he’s very nice. We try to see each other as often as we can. I know it’s hard maintaining a long distance relationship but I’m praying this one will work out."











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