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Sunday Lifestyle

Kris Aquino as film producer & mom of new movie star Bimby

WILL SOON FLOURISH - Wilson Lee Flores - The Philippine Star

Popular TV host and actress Kristina Bernadette “Kris” Cojuangco Aquino has continuously reinvented herself through the years and, at age 42, is now embarking on a new venture as entrepreneurial producer of a big-budget movie entry to the 2013 Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) titled My Little Bossings, which will be showing nationwide on Christmas Day.

This family-oriented comedy and drama movie stars the country’s top comedian Vic Sotto along with Kris Aquino’s six-year-old son James “Bimby” Aquino Yap in his first foray into entertainment, Ryzza Mae Dizon, singer-songwriter Aiza Seguerra and Kris.

The “Queen of All Media” said she was hands-on in many details of the production, from the choice of director Marlon Rivera, bringing foods on the set to strategizing TV spots promoting this film. For her son Bimby, she even hired acting coach Ralley Zapanta, got Liz Uy as his fashion stylist and even had top photographer Mark Nicdao there for Bimby. She only missed three days of shooting due to her new TV commercial.

Apart from her own firm Kris Aquino Productions, the other co-producers of the movie My Little Bossings are OctoArts Films of Orly Ilacad, M-Zet Films of Vic Sotto and APT Entertainment of Eat Bulaga producer Tony Tuviera.

Despite her hectic schedule in recent weeks due to this new movie, her daily television show Kris TV on ABS-CBN and her recently going to the typhoon Yolanda-hit areas to do relief volunteer work, Kris Aquino gave the The STAR an exclusive interview. Here are excerpts:

PHILIPPINE STAR: Your co-producer, Orly Ilacad, told me he foresees My Little Bossings to hit gross revenues of P250 million. Vic Sotto said he hopes it will be No. 1 in the MMFF box office specially since it’s also the only family-oriented movie entry. What are your hopes for this film and your future plans as producer?

KRIS AQUINO: I say “Amen” to what boss Orly and Vic said! This is the first venture of Kris Aquino Productions where I really took part from conceptualization, production, editing, promotions etc. I enjoyed the learning and the stress! Can’t wait for our next venture.

Why are you not in the movie poster, only Vic, your son Bimby and Ryzza there?

Kasi hindi bagay (It’s because it’s not suitable), the movie revolves around their three main characters. It’s essentially the journey of a father — nakakakurot sa puso ang istorya (the story somehow pinches the heart)… When the story was first presented to me, kumurot sa puso ko (it pinched my heart)… I appeared in only six scenes in the movie. I asked them to take out one scene, so that it wouldn’t slow down the flow.

How do you manage being a single mom with your extremely hectic schedule?

My sons are my priority. We have a tight bond, and we are making the best of what isn’t an ideal situation.

What lessons or advice have you learned from your mom, the late President Cory Aquino, about being a mother?

My mom taught me the value of giving them time, that it shouldn’t all just be about working and delegating their care to others.

How do you manage to spend time with your sons since you’re extremely busy?

We really travel a lot, this year I’m proud to say at only six years old, Bimby has been to all Disney resorts since we were also able to go to Paris Disneyland. We’ve been to Disney in Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Orlando, Tokyo and Paris was the last. We also went to Universal Studios in Singapore and Osaka. But we also made a very special pilgrimage to Israel.

Family travel will give us lasting memories and I regret not having been able to travel more with my mom when she was healthier.

What lessons or advice have you learned from your mom,  about being a mother?

My mom taught me the value of giving them time, that it shouldn’t all just be about working and delegating their care to others.We pray together before sleeping and we still share one room. My two boys get iPad time before bed and they say I have my “nerd” time because that’s when I do my reading.

I try to be free on weekends, at least by 6 p.m. of Saturday to attend Mass with my sisters and my sons and then watch a movie with my two boys. We love watching in the SM IMAX cinemas in SM Mall of Asia, North EDSA, Aura, and hopefully when Megamall IMAX opens.

How do you assess the acting performance of your son Bimby in his first movie?

Oh no, Wilson I’m super biased! I just love everything Bimby does and I’m proudest of the fact that my son is a good boy who’s respectful, obedient, and at only six, he already has a great work ethic! 

Who among our celebrities would you want your son to emulate in the future?

I hope he’ll follow in the footsteps of Luis Manzano. We all knew him before as a kid nicknamed Lucky, the son of Vilma Santos Recto, then he grew up to become the good TV host Luis. If Bimby wants to someday study abroad, become a lawyer, go into sports or politics, it’s ok with me. It’s really up to him what he wants in the future and I’ll support him. The only thing I want him to accomplish is to finish a college diploma, that’s what my late mother wanted for all her grandkids.

What made you, as a mother, agree to allow your son to go into making a film?

Vic Sotto is the big factor, with him I know Bimby will be in good hands. I also consulted my siblings and they said Vic has a good track record in taking care of people such as Aiza Seguerra and Ryzza Mae, he doesn’t abandon anyone. I’m  grateful that my son has done his first movie with Vic, because he is such a professional. Vic Sotto doesn’t go to the movie set with an entourage, just with his driver, he doesn’t act like a diva or a superstar.

Your son seems to be doing well already, with advertising billboards and now his first movie, how are you managing his earnings?

Everything Bimby is earning, all that are being kept in a trust which he can only get after college or until he reaches the age of 25. I want my son to realize in the future that I have carefully set aside money for him, that none of his earnings was wasted.

What do you think are your success secrets?

My success comes from being passionate about what I do... I believe in giving the people the best possible viewing experience and not short changing them. And I believe in continuing to learn and to evolve so as not to ever become boring!

If you were not in entertainment as top TV host and box office actress, what do you think would have been your professions? Why?

If not entertainment then most likely politics, or I’d be in the food industry — I love to cook and would like to be like Barefoot Contessa or the Pioneer Woman. I would love to own a restaurant that would eventually grow to have a hotel, with a very homey feeling and I’d have a show kitchen where I can cook Pinoy comfort food for our guests. Or I’d be a full-time Gawad Kalinga social entrepreneur.

You are probably the Philippines’ top celebrity endorser now, from SM to Filinvest, and many other products. What are your latest endorsements?

I am now with Cherry Mobile and they created a new phablet for me  — we are working closely on the design. (Writer’s note: A “phablet” is a kind of mobile device designed to combine the functions of a smartphone and a tablet.)

Is it true you have succeeded to have TV commercial tie-ups with big companies to promote your new movie?

There are “intrusions” in this movie. Vic Sotto is endorser of Tide detergent, for me it’s products like Pantene. I’m grateful to Procter & Gamble for having bought over P100 million worth of TV spots, this is the first time they’ve gone for such ads for a movie. Awareness is the name of the game in the local film industry. We have support from both GMA 7 and ABS-CBN 2, the film’s TV rights is going to ABS CBN, but we have no illusions that our total TV spots will match those for the MMFF entries of Vice Ganda and the movie Pagpag

A lot of people think you’re a natural leader and would excel in politics.

That is so kind! But I feel I am headed towards a career in business with corporate social responsibility heavily in the mix.

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Thanks for your feedback! E-mail [email protected] or follow WilsonLeeFlores on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook and http://willsoonflourish.blogspot.com/

AQUINO

BIMBY

KRIS

KRIS AQUINO

MOVIE

MY LITTLE BOSSINGS

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VIC

VIC SOTTO

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