Carla guided by Lola Delia
Carla guided by Lola Delia
Nathalie Tomada (The Philippine Star) - January 13, 2012 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines - Carla Abellana considers herself a bit of a late entrant to showbiz, having dipped her feet into the waters of what’s oft-described as an age-biased industry at the age of 23. And that’s two years after finishing college and after many years of being wooed by talent scouts when she was growing up.

That’s why she’s thankful that there’s no letup of opportunities for TV and the movies since she was launched on GMA 7’s Rosalinda in 2009. Last year, she shot three movies — My Neighbor’s Wife and last December’s MMFF entry Yesterday Today Tomorrow under Regal Films, with whom she has a 12-picture contract, and the MMFF Best Picture Manila Kingpin: Asiong Salonga. Her current TV project is the GMA 7 afternoon soap Kung Aagawin Mo Ang Langit, where she plays a mother and wife who miraculously comes out of a long coma only to find out her husband is already involved with her best friend.

“I’m counting my blessings... and I’ve lost count already. It’s such a nice feeling to look back and realize that a lot of beautiful things had happened. And it’s hard to imagine that all that happened (in 2011),” Carla told The STAR in a recent interview.  

Carla is now on her third year in the biz“My first year in showbiz was I think the best and also the most difficult. But I would say that each year gets better and better for me. I’ve learned to enjoy (showbiz). I’ve learned to love it.”

Fans and critics alike have also noticed Carla’s improvement in acting, particularly making shining moments in drama. “I listen to my directors, to my co-actors, I take criticisms and use them to my advantage. Every project, every opportunity I have, I try to do better and really improve. I try to do everything, I do workshops, I take a rest if I need it. I always ask for advice. Ang dami kong tanong. I always observe working with (actors senior than me) and that alone already gives me a lot of pointers. Like Maricel Soriano (her co-star in Yesterday Today Tomorrow) nagpaturo ako paano manampal, as she has her own way, and I wanna use it although I still couldn’t get it,” she said.

The advice, nevertheless, that she really takes to heart is that of her lola, veteran actress Delia Razon.

“Just to use your eyes. That’s what my lola keeps on telling me. What is acting if you don’t see it in the eyes of the actor, that’s what she said,” said Carla, adding that her grandmother is a main source of support. “My lola is very proud and happy for me… Naiiyak pa yan pag may maganda akong nababalita sa kanya. She’s so supportive to the point that she keeps all my pictures, magazine covers, etc.”

And what does she hope to achieve this year? “I haven’t been making new year’s resolutions for quite a while kasi nagbabago din, either nababawasan or nadadagdagan. So maganda rin, apart from making resolutions at the start of the year, you make small goals throughout the year.”

Among them is to have more projects that will harness her versatility as an actress. She also wants to watch more indie films, and would like to star in one herself. “Sana makagawa ako ng indie film. Meron talagang kumukuha sa akin, but that would have to depend on Regal Films, if they would allow me.”

Carla is also eyeing to make two new investments, a car and a business venture.

And what are the lessons she has learned in showbiz so far?

“A lot, beginning with my family, that you should learn to value time with them. Also on working with people in the industry,” Carla said.

“(Showbiz) is a different world, and you move differently here. There are rules and regulations, and there are things that are beyond your control. When you enter showbiz, you really have to let go a part of yourself. If you ask me, the lessons are not enough. But I do think na tama lang yung timing ng pagpasok ko sa showbiz.”

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