Belle takes risk for Kubot
FUNFARE - Ricky Lo (The Philippine Star) - December 22, 2014 - 12:00am

Curtain-raiser:

• How long can Side A survive without its lead vocalist Joey Generoso (photo)? That’s the so-called million-dollar question. According to a Funfare DPA, Joey is leaving the group (soon?) and if that happens (“It surely will,” the DPA insisted), Side A will have a hard time looking for a replacement. The group is almost three decades old now and minus Joey, it won’t ever be the same. So why is Joey leaving the group? “You will know in due time,” added the DPA.

***

Her mom, Gloria Diaz, was the last to know.

When Isabelle “Belle” Daza came home from a shoot of Kubot: The Aswang Chronicles with some bruises here and there, and told her mom that she did her own stunts, Gloria freaked out, screaming at her, “What!?! Next time, don’t do your own stunts!”

As an aswang-slayer in the new franchise (a follow-up to Tiktik) also written, directed and co-produced by Erik Matti (with Dingdong Dantes, the lead star, among the partners), Belle could have let a “double” do the stunts for her in the fight scenes but no, she insisted that she do them herself.

The first stunt called for her to jump on a guy. Belle did it so well that the Chinese martial artists hired for the movie were so impressed that they gave Belle the thumbs-up.

“In the other scenes,” said Belle, “I have to jump on the floor, jump here and there. The movie is not horror, contrary to what some people think, but an action-adventure with a touch of comedy. It’s action-packed, kaya feel na feel kong si Angelina Jolie ako in Lara Croft, hahaha! Matapang ako dito, so more than being sexy, direk Erik wanted it to be a kick-ass role. I was secured by a harness but just the same, medyo masakit. I would say that I really put blood, sweat and tears into my role.” (Yes, Belle was insured purposely for the movie that took nine months to shoot.)

With the cast of the forthcoming Kapamilya drama show Nathaniel including (from left) Pokwang, Shaina Magdayao, Gerald Anderson and Coney Reyes, with Marco Pingol (as the title role)

Although quite demanding (like all perfectionists), Erik was easy to work with, according to Belle.

“One time,” she recalled, “we spent one whole day shooting a scene but he realized that an extra who had one line could not deliver properly, so he had to reshoot the whole thing all over again. Direk Erik is a visionary.”

For Belle, 2014 started with a poignant performance in the indie film Lihis (directed by Joel Lamangan) as the narrator tracing the roots of her rebel father. She got good reviews for Lihis just as she did for It Takes a Man and a Woman as the girlfriend of John Lloyd Cruz. She’s ending the year with a thud with Kubot for which she will surely earn more praises.

“I really want to be a good actress and I’m doing it slowly but surely,” said Belle. It took her mom several years to get out of her “Miss Universe shadow” and develop into an award-winning actress. If Gloria can do it, why can’t Belle?

It was Belle’s desire to focus more on acting that made her quit her hosting job on Eat, Bulaga! which was her “home” for three years.

“Leaving Bulaga was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make in my life,” admitted Belle who has jumped ober da bakod from Kapuso to Kapamilya. “I’ve made great friends in Bulaga and they will always be like family to me. I left GMA in a good way. I was able to talk to the bosses and they understood. I’m ready for a new chapter in my life. I want to learn more about acting.”

Her Kapamilya “debut” is a drama show titled Nathaniel, co-starring with Gerald Anderson, Shaina Magdayao and Coney Reyes (a Bulaga alumna).

“Workshop in ABS-CBN is something different,” said Belle. “Five hours straight and super draining. Workshop pa lang pagod na ako, hahahaha!”

Asked about the possibility of her and Gerald (they play sweethearts) getting too close for comfort, of being “developed” thus making Gerald’s girlfriend Maja Salvador “suspicious” and jealous, Belle laughed, “We’ll see!”

Actually, Belle is very happy with her French boyfriend of a few years.

ANGELINA JOLIE ASWANG CHRONICLES BELLE BULAGA DINGDONG DANTES ERIK ERIK MATTI KAPAMILYA SIDE A
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