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Anne Curtis holds bachelorette party in Los Angeles

Published in Entertainment



(Photo from Instagram | @annecurtissmith)


Actress, television host and singer Anne Curtis celebrated the last moments of singlehood with her squad in Los Angeles.


Anne celebrated the last moments of singlehood with her sister Jasmine and close friends.


Anne, a Filipino Australian who is Anne Ojales Curtis Smith in real life, is engaged to be married to fiancé food blogger and restaurateur Erwan Heussaff, brother of actress Solenn Heussaf.


Erwan proposed to Anne last December while they were in United States.


Born in Yarrawonga, Australia, Anne, now 32, went on leave from her hosting job on ABS-CBN’s "It's Showtime" to be able to hold her bachelorette party in Los Angeles.


Her “bride tribe” at the party included her younger sister Jasmine, best friends Isabella Daza, daughter of former beauty queen and actress Gloria Diaz, and stylist Liz Uy.


Anne and Erwan have not revealed details of their upcoming wedding but the actress had hinted it could be held before the year ends.


The Filipino-Australian actress and her younger sister Jasmine flew to Los Angeles last Thursday for her hen party.


 The siblings shared photos of their trip to Los Angeles over the weekend, including one in the airport, and the Knott's Scary Farm, one of Southern California's most popular Halloween horror houses.


 Last August, Heussaff had his bachelor's party in Siargao with some of his friends.


 While details of their upcoming wedding have not been disclosed, actor Luis Manzano came forward with the admission that he will be the “man of honor” in the wedding where Jasmine Curtis Smith will be the maid of honor.


In an episode of ABS-CBN's Magandang Buhay, Luis expressed his excitement for his best friend’s wedding and shared that Anne had sent him a letter reminding him of their promise to be a part of each other's wedding entourage


 "Si Anne, nakaka-touch, kasi 'di ba ikakasal na nga siya? She sent me a letter saying na 'may promise tayo sa isa't isa and would you be my man of honor sa kasal?' So kasama ako sa entourage ng kasal niya. 'Yun ang promise namin sa isa't isa na kailangan part ako noon. At the same time, kapag ikinasal na ako, she will be my best woman," Luis disclosed.


Luis stressed that he and Anne have been best friends even before he entered showbiz.


"Siguro hindi pa ako artista, baka 18 pa lang ako nakilala ko na siya. Siya 'yung type ng best friend na hindi ko kailangang makita on a regular basis para ma-maintain 'yung friendship naming,” he said.


While his best friend is about to walk down the aisle, Luis is also hoping that he would settle down soon. Luis is currently in a relationship with actress Jessy Mendiola.


Anne, meanwhile, revealed that she is not keen to have a baby immediately after her wedding.


The "It's Showtime" co-host said she and Heussaff are keen to enjoy married life for some time before trying for kids.


Annes added that she and Heussaff love to travel and having a child would mean they have to lessen their trips abroad to focus on the family.


"Erwan and I love to travel. I think we focus more on travelling siguro before we decide. Everyone advised me na pag nagka-baby, nag-iiba na raw talaga. Hindi basta-basta ka makaka-travel," she said.


At the same time, the actress assured her fans that she's not slowing down from showbusiness once she becomes Mrs. Heussaff.


She said they are not the kind of couple who will limit each other from the work they do. "I don't think nasa personality ko kasi who would be the type to just be at home. I'm so active and outgoing, and I love to work. So, I don't think so."


"If ever my path would be towards that, more than magse-settle down at mawawala, parang mabo-bored yata ako," she said.


Asked what will only change once she's married already, Curtis replied, "Maybe just my last name. I will remain the same." Right now, the actress said she's just excited with what lies ahead for her and Heussaff.


Anne and her boyfriend have remained tight-lipped though on the details of their wedding. "Spending the rest of my life with the person that I love and starting a new family together, I'm excited for all the surprises that will come my way," she said. 

Pacquiao wants rematch with Jeff Horn but...

Published in Sports



(Photo from Instagram | @mannypacquiao)


MANILA — There is no doubt that Jeff Horn’s victory over Filipino boxing legend Manny Pacquiao served as a big boost to Queensland’s economy.


And a windfall, too, not only for that Australian State’s but also the whole of Australia’s tourism which is already basking in the glow of almost 17,000 out-of-state visitors who descended on Brisbane for the weekend when the two fighters crossed paths last July 2.


This was the consensus expressed by the host government’s officials, led by Brisbane City Mayor Graham Quirk, and even Top Tank Promotion bossman Bob Arum after Horn kept his undefeated record with a unanimous, albeit controversial, win before a 50,000 crowd at the Suncorp Arena.


 Arum was quoted by Australian media as saying the fight would bring boxing back to its rightful place in global sport. “It is a transformational fight for not only Australia but the world. Even before the historic encounter, it was booing under," he said.


Not only that, and this everybody in boxing world knows, because of the new World Boxing Organization welterweight crown owner, but also because of Pacquiao, who, in the first place, was chosen to dance with the former schoolteacher on the merit of his immense popularity and vast drawing power.


True it was Pacquiao, the only man in the universe to crown himself champion 11 times in eight weight division, who  sought that a rematch clause be part of the contract, but it is now this same clause that Horn’s camp is urging the Filipino to honor, not the other way around. Precisely because of the potential benefits the outcome of the bout would bring.


The Pacman was willing, and is, in fact, still willing to honor the rematch and fight Horn again next month – November 12 to be exact. 

But had, or has Horn and the Australian fight organizers accorded Pacquiao the respect he deserves owing to his status as a respected fighter and a high-ranking government official of his country -- a senator at that?


Never. From the time Manny and his party arrived in the host city, everything he got from whatever he did seemed to have not pass their criteria as they were met with ridicule and insult.


Like during the final pre-fight press conference when he kept using his mobile phone, everybody ganged up on him not realizing that as a lawmaker he had to monitor minute-by-minute what was happening in the country. 

When he left Manila, war had just erupted in Marawi City in Mindanao and a strong typhoon had hit his hometown General Santos City.


 During the victory parade after stashing away with the 147-pound belt, Horn poked fun at his victim to the delight of his fans.          


The WBO, despite early dilly-dallying, granted Pacquiao’s plea for a review of the judges’ questionable decision but came up approving the verdict via a seldom heard of point-system of scoring without considering that 55 of 67 booing writers polled after the fight voted that Manny was the clear winner.    


Many of those who participated in the survey expressed belief that the Filipino ring icon was robbed of victory.       


Then when Pacquiao looked to agree with going on with the rematch came Horn’s trainer Glenn Rushton saying his camp will request drug testing to ”level the playing field” because he was not satisfied with the drug-testing protocol applied in the first match.


And now that the cat is out that Manny has begged to move the rematch next year, Horn and his camp has started shopping for opponent which seems hardly to be  found.   


Which, according to one boxing writer is understandable. “Who,” he reported, “is a boxer in his right mind would agree to fly to Brisbane and be a victim of what Pacquiao suffered? “  



Published in Headline



(Photo from Manila Bulletin)


MANILA – Citizens, although they widely support President Rodrigo Duterte’s war on drugs, have started to get angry as more people, including young students and teenagers who are perceived to be innocent, are killed by police operatives in their operations.


Manila Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, the head of the Philippines' powerful Catholic Church,  for one, called for an end to what he described as "waste of human lives" following a brutal week in President Duterte's drug war in which 60 people died in a day of police operatives alone, including Kian delos Santos, a 17-year-old student in CalooCan City.


Youth groups, human rights organizations and religious communities trooped to EDSA People Power Monument in Quezon City on August 21 – the 34th anniversary of the murder of senator Ninoy Aquino – to call for an end to killings in the country.


“Sigaw ng taumbayan: itigil ang patayan!” they chanted during the protest dubbed “Himagsikan #JusticeForKian.”


US Ambassador to Manila Sung Kim joined the chorus of calls for accountability over the anti-drug operation that claimed the life of Kian Lloyd Delos Santos. 


"My condolences go out to the family and friends of Kian. Hope that the investigations lead to full accountability," Kim wrote on Twitter. 


At the tomb of his father in Paranaque City, former President Benigno S. Aquino III also called for end to killings as he likened them to martial law during the time of President Ferdinand Marcos.


The Senate whose majority members are allies of President Duterte, meanwhile, assailed the killing of Kian and joined the Commission on Human Rights and the Department of Justice in investigating the killing.


The Grade 11 student whose mother has been working in Saudi Arabia was shot dead last Wednesday, August 16, when he allegedly resisted arrest in Barangay 160, Caloocan City. Witnesses, however, claimed the teenager was mauled by policemen, given a gun and told to run before he was shot. The witnesses’ claims were supported by a CCTV recording of an unarmed Kian being waylaid by policemen after he was collared.


The public outrage triggered by the killing of Kian prompted President Duterte to call for an investigation over the manner by which Kian was killed at the hands of police officers who executed an anti-drug operation.


“Should the investigation point to liabilities by one, two, or all, there will be a prosecution and they have to go to jail,” President Duterte declared at a Malacañang guest house press conference hastily called for that purpose.


The Delos Santos family has initiated a move to file a murder complaint in the wake of autopsy findings by the Public Attorney’s Office that Kian succumbed to three gunshot wounds, each of which could have been fatal.


Three police officers identified to be behind the arrest and killing of Kian were ordered arrested by Philippine National Police chief Director General Ronald dela Rosa.


The three policemen were identified as Police Officer 3 Arnel Oares and Police Officers 1 Jeremias Pereda and Jerwin Cruz.


Surveillance footage showed 2 officers accompanying Kian Delos Santos to the spot where the boy was killed. Witnesses alleged that the police beat up the victim, gave him a gun by force, and told the teener to run for his life and thereupon was shot at least three times.


Duterte said there could have been abuses in his government's war on drugs and ordered the police to take custody of officers who were involved in the killing of Kian Lloyd delos Santos.


In a hastily called news conference at the Presidential Guest House, Duterte said he would not condone abuses and the police officers would have to face the consequences of their actions if that is the recommendation of a formal investigation.


"There is a possibility that in some of police incidents there could be abuses. I admit that," Duterte said.


Duterte said he called up the national police chief after seeing footage from a CCTV camera showing plain clothes police dragging the boy, who was later found dead after what official reports described as gunfight in a sting operation.


He said he would abide by the results of an investigation by the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI). "If the NBI says we file charges of murder, sorry to the policemen concerned," he said.


"You have to face the justice system. They have to go to jail if convicted," he said.


He said there are some rogue elements in the police that were destroying the image of the government.


"These abusive police officers are destroying the credibility of the government," he added. "Who will follow the government if the credibility is destroyed."


The United States earlier expressed concern on the deaths of thousands of drug suspects under the campaign. President  Duterte, in turn, hurled curses at the Western superpower. 


Ties between Manila and Washington have thawed since US President Donald Trump came to power. The American leader has not directly criticized Duterte's controversial campaign so far. 


Public Attorney's Office chief Persida Rueda-Acosta said Kian died due to three fatal wounds. “Tatlong fatal wounds po ito – dalawa sa ulo at isa sa likod … Ito ay gunshot wounds. At isa po ay treacherous wound,” she said.


The outcome of a re-autopsy conducted at the prompting of the family disclosed that Kian died of three fatal gunshot wounds “that were meant to kill”.


The findings by the forensic team from the Public Attorney’s Office (PAO) prompted the move by the family to file murder charges against police officers implicated in the incident.


The viewing at Kian’s wake was interrupted to make way for the four-hour autopsy by the forensic team from PAO.


In summary, the team observed that Kian died of three wounds: One bullet wound was at Kian’s back, while two other hits were to his left ear.


The Senate majority bloc released a resolution condemning and calling for a probe on the death of Kian Loyd Delos Santos.


It is titled a “Resolution expressing the sense of the Senate to condemn the killing of Kian Loyd Delos Santos and to direct the appropriate Senate committee to conduct an inquiry in aid of legislation to determine the accountability of the Philippine National Police in the conduct of the campaign against illegal drugs that may have resulted in unnecessary and unjustified deaths and/or killings.”


The resolution was signed by 14 out of 17 senators belonging to the majority bloc namely Senate President Aquilino Pimentel III, Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III, Senate President Pro-Tempore Ralph Recto, Senators Juan Edgardo Angara, Joseph Victor Ejercito, Sherwin Gatchalian, Richard Gordon, Gringo Honasan, Panfilo Lacson, Loren Legarda, Grace Poe, Joel Villanueva, Cynthia Villar, and Juan Miguel Zubiri. Senators Nancy Binay, Francis Escudero, and Manny Pacquiao  signed the resolution later.


More than a hundred Filipino artists are urging President Duterte to stop the government’s bloody war on illegal drugs as they denounced the recent drug-related killings in the country, especially of the “the innocent and young.”


“We, Filipino cultural workers, condemn the killings wrought by the war on drugs, especially of the innocent, the young, and those caught in the crossfire,” they said in a statement.


“We denounce the normalization of these killings, the pardon of rogue police and military men," the statement was signed by 168 cultural workers; among them were writers Ricky Lee and Lourd de Veyra, filmmakers Lav Diaz and Jun Lana, actors Angeli Bayani and Cherry Pie Picache, director Quark Henares, and musician Ebe Dancel.


While the government is waging war against illegal drugs, the group noted its “silence” on the issue of the P6.4-billion worth smuggled shabu from China that allegedly slipped past the Bureau of Customs.


“Where Filipinos are dying on mere suspicion of involvement in drugs, where deaths are justified by victims’ inclusion in questionable drug lists, where a few grams of drugs on a person has been used to justify murder, government has fallen silent on the P6.4-billion worth of smuggled drugs from China, for which there have been no suspects charged,” the artists said in a statement.

Heart Evangelista 'opens' her new home, answers twits

Published in Entertainment

(Photo from Instagram | @iamhearte)


Fashion icon, painter, actress and wife of Sen. Francis Escudero is veritably on cloud nine these days.


This as she opened her new home to friends who immediately dubbed her a domestic goddess even as she is busy with a Korean-Filipino production in which she co-stars with Korean actors.


Despite her busy schedule and her new television show, Heart showed off portions of her new home earning praises that she still manages to be a domestic goddess in real life.


 The actress is even earning praises for her unique taste when it comes to her home’s dining table setup, it was learned.


In her latest Instagram posts, through @iamhearte, Heart impressed her followers when she showcased her skills by pulling off a Filipino-Spanish dinner setup. The ever-fashionable lady also owns plates showing European and Chinese history.


The GMA star also opened up her home to Instagram followers, posting several parts of the house she shares with her husband Senator Escudero and his twins.


Heart, however, has declined offers to show their entire home in magazine features.


The comely star has revealed it took her three years to finish the house she built from her savings. Heart and her politician husband have signed a pre-nuptial agreement thus, the new home remains under her name.


Heart, at the same time, answered some remarks regarding the new house that she built which insinuate that it came from what her husband had "earned"  in the last election where Sen. Escudero ran for vice president with Sen. Grace Poe.


 “You know, that’s really foul because 'yung house, it really came from my own earnings," Heart stressed in a talk with columnist Mario Bautista.


"We just laugh it off kasi everyone knows we signed a prenup and I declare what I make every year, so check na lang nila ang talent fee ko," the comely actress stressed.


"Hindi kami nagpapakialaman sa earnings ng bawat isa, but when it comes to our everyday expenses, share kami. My husband is a very open minded person and supportive siya sa career ko. I’m working on my own, I act, I have my paintings, so what’s wrong with that?” she said.

Heart was asked when she and husband have their own baby and she had an immediate reply.


“Naku, siguro pagkatapos na nitong ‘My Korean Jagiya’ saka kami magpo-focus sa pagbe-baby. Promise 'yan. We’ll work on it na,” she said.


Her house also serves as her artistic sanctuary as Heart once again picks up her brushes to paint. As an artist, she is known as Love Marie. She has exhibited her works in the past but painting had to take a backseat for a while since her plate has been full with back-to-back acting engagements in “Mulawin versus Ravena” and now, My Korean Jagiya.


“In between taping, did this on-the-spot painting for a short film. Can’t wait to share it with you!” Evangelista proudly noted on her new artwork.


In another interview, Heart, who recently celebrated her 19th anniversary in showbiz, revealed she sees herself staying in the industry for five more years, before moving on to other endeavors.


“Everything that happened after my 10th year was just a bonus, and I’m grateful. I’m giving myself five years. After that, I think I deserve to really live my life,” she tsaid at a recent press conference for her coming romantic-comedy series on GMA 7, “My Korean Jagiya.”


Heart said she plans to focus on her and her family’s businesses in food and fashion. “I plan my life. I think about everything—I take note of how much I make and how long it would last me,” she said.

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