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Focus on the Philippines: Kris Aquino confirmed to join Crazy Rich Asians film

Plus: actor Zachary Levi enjoys balut in the Philippines; Filipino film Dark is the Night to screen at Toronto film fest; Strangers Things cast coming to Manila’s Comicon.

Filipino actress Kris Aquino to be in the cast of the Hollywood adaptation of Crazy Rich Asians. ABS-CBN Entertainment
Filipino actress Kris Aquino to be in the cast of the Hollywood adaptation of Crazy Rich Asians. ABS-CBN Entertainment

Kevin Kwan, the author of the bestselling novel Crazy Rich Asians, finally confirmed this week that Filipino actress Kris Aquino is indeed part of the cast of the book’s forthcoming Hollywood adaptation.

Aquino will play a “very special part” in the movie, says Kwan. “I think audiences are going to love it.”

Kwan made the revelation in an interview with the Filipino news programme Headstart.

“She’s Kris Aquino, what else is there to say? I have a soft spot for her,” he said.

Published in 2013, Crazy Rich Asians is a multi-generational satire about a clan of wealthy Singaporeans.

Rumours about Aquino’s inclusion in the film spread when the actress flew to Singapore last June for an undisclosed film project. Without revealing any details, Aquino posted on social media a photograph with Hollywood star Constance Wu, who plays the lead role in Crazy Rich Asians.

Aquino revealed on Instagram that her costumes for the film were created by the Filipino designers Michael Leyva and Michael Cinco, the Dubai-based couturier.

“Thank you THE Michael Cinco for making me gowns truly befitting a ‘princess’,” Aquino wrote.

Aside from Aquino and Wu, Crazy Rich Asians features a star-studded ensemble of Asian and Asian-American actors including Michelle Yeoh, Sonoya Mizuno, Gemma Chan and Filipino actor Nico Santos, who currently stars in the American comedy series Superstore.


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Produced by Warner Brothers, the film is directed by Jon M Chu (Step Up 3D, G I Joe: Retaliation, Now You See Me 2), who posted on Twitter that the film will feature “amazing Asian actors cast in every single role. It’s time”.

Earlier this year, the 46-year-old Aquino signed a contract with the international talent management company East West Artists, which is based in Los Angeles, California.

She is dubbed the “Queen of All Media” in the Philippines, having appeared in multiple film, television and advertising projects since 1990. Aquino is the daughter of the late President Corazon Aquino and Senator Ninoy Aquino, and the sister of President Noynoy Aquino, who led the country from 2010 until 2016.

Actor Zachary Levi enjoys balut in the Philippines

Hollywood actor Zachary Levi surprised his fans in the Philippines this week when he revealed on social media that he’s touring the country.

On his Instagram page, Levi posted on Tuesday a photograph of the Filipino delicacy balut, tagging the city of Cauayan in the northern Philippine province of Isabela.

On Wednesday, Levi posted photos and videos from the hotel resort City of Dreams Manila, where he ate dinner and enjoyed karaoke with several Filipino friends.

A post shared by Zac Levi (@zacharylevi) on

His Filipino fans quickly flooded his social media pages with comments. “Why didn’t you tell us you’re in the Philippines?” asked a Twitter user named @drmcmuffin.

Levi replied: “Because I’ve been hiding from @MsLeaSalonga! I may or may not owe her 1 million pesos and a McDo,” a reference to Broadway star and Filipino actress Lea Salonga.

Whether Levi was in the country for work or tourism was unclear.

Levi, 36, is best known for playing the lead role in the television series Chuck. He is currently filming two movies, Office Uprising and The Star, and will star in the new Netflix drama series Alias Grace.

Filipino film Dark is the Night to screen at Toronto film fest

Filipino director Adolfo Alix Jr’s 30th feature film, Madilim ang Gabi (Dark is the Night), is set to have its world premiere at the 42nd edition of the Toronto International Film Festival, to be held in Canada from September 7 to 17.

Selected for the festival’s Contemporary World Cinema section, Dark is the Night tells the story of a couple (played by veteran Filipino actors Gina Alajar and Phillip Salvador) caught up in President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs when their son goes missing, according to the festival’s website.

The film also stars Anita Linda, Elizabeth Oropesa, Cherry Pie Picache, Angel Aquino and father-and-son Bembol Roco and Felix Roco.

Also screening at the Toronto Film Festival is Filipino director Carlo Francisco Manatad’s dark comedy Jodilerks dela Cruz, Employee of the Month, which will screen as part of the Short Cuts section.

Strangers Things cast coming to Manila’s Comicon

Four cast members of the hit science fiction television series Stranger Things are coming to Manila as guests of this year’s Asia Pop Comicon, which will be held at the SMX Convention Centre from August 25 to 27.

Actors Joe Keery and Noah Schnapp are flying in for the annual entertainment convention alongside the show’s new stars Dacre Montgomery and Sadie Sink. The second season of the series will be released by Netflix on October 27.

The Strangers Things cast join previously announced Comicon headliners Tyler Hoechlin (of Teen Wolf and Supergirl fame) and Ray Fisher (Justice League).

Updated: August 24, 2017 01:11 PM