We are fortunate that we have now the YouTube where we could be able to watch what was previously recorded but failed to see ourselves, especially those that were belonged to history.Thus, for those who are a fan of the Miss Universe 1969 and respectable actress Gloria Diaz, it is such a good treat. I was not able to see the pageant in the previous years of my existence because it happened many years before I was born. I satisfied myself on written articles about the event, wherein someone said that she was like a queen when she walked. That time, Guadalquiver wrote in Missology-Philippines that U.S. President Nixon had even said, ” when America conquered the moon, the Philippines conquered the universe.” She was the Philippine’s first Miss Universe. She was an epitome of classic beauty and wit. She was eloquent and confident. She was definitely one of the international achievers we wanted to emulate.
After winning her title, Gloria Diaz was originally the so-called “Pinakamagandang Hayop Sa Balat ng Lupa. ” In English, it means, The Most Beautiful Animal on Earth.It was also a title of the movie she starred in with Cecilio Ad Castillo as director. I have not seen that movie yet but,they said that it was a daring role for her during that time when women were too conservative to reveal flesh. It was also where she got a nomination for the best actress category in the FAMAS, a prestigious award giving body for movies in the Philippines. It was a great pride even just to be nominated.
In the 80’s, Gloria made numerous movies with Filipino veteran actors like the late Dindo Fernando, Former president Joseph Estrada, Ronaldo Valdez and the late Vic Vargas.She always characterized women with strong personality.The comedy movies were always witty.The characters fitted her well and she delivered the punch line effectively. The dramatic characters she played were those that make us wonder. The movies were always those of the complexities of the married life like being an another woman or being a woman whose husband was philandering. Looking back, we could say that just like in the Miss Universe pageant, she carried herself well in the presence of the big stars of showbusiness.It was that stance that perhaps made her won the international tilt. She knew where she could place herself.My sister and I loved watching her since we were children. From then, we speculated the magnificent stories of the Philippine cinema during Gloria’s prime.It was the also the time when the great movies of Vilma Santos, Sharon Cuneta and Lorna Tolentino dominated the movie theaters. We thought that the people now have to make stories that could be at par, if not better than what they had.
Gloria is the elder sister of Rio Diaz-Cojuangco. According to the Wikipedia, Rio was also a beauty queen that represented the country in Miss Asia and won fourth place. They were 12 siblings in the family. I remember reading articles how they joined different rallies of opposing parties during the Marcos and Cory campaign. When they got home, they allowed their differences to forgo and lived in harmony as a family. One of the tragedies that fell in their family was Rio’s death due to colon cancer.It was a six-year hard battle.
Now, Gloria lives glamorously with her three children, two daughters and a son.She is still active in the show business. My favorite movie of her in the last ten years was “Rizal” of the GMA Films, where she played the mother of the great hero. She also played the mother-in law of Judy Anne Santos in “Kasal, Kasali, Kasalo.” Her opinions are always asked in times of beauty competitions because her experience does matter and her statements have good points that the concerned could consider. Anyway, it is the Miss Universe who is talking.
List of References:
Guadalquiver, J. Gloria Diaz: the Woman, The Actor, The beauty Queen. www.missology.org/Philippines