Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Woman Without a Face

If you thought Kris Aquino’s love life is the most colorful one in showbiz, you haven’t heard of Pilar Pilapil. She is perhaps the Marilyn Monroe of the Philippines or the “It” girl. I don’t have to defend that claim much than by enumerating some of the men (when I say some, I mean it) who for one time had gone crazy for Pilar Delilah "Lailing" Veloso Pilapil:

* Fernando Poe, Jr.
* Dolphy
* Former VP Salvador “Doy” Laurel, the father of Pia Pilapil
* Eugenio Lopez Jr.
* Bolivian painter Benjamin Mendoza
* Spanish journalist Michel Ponti

In other words, all the great and powerful men of Pilar’s prime wanted to love her, if not just to bed her.

Pilar Pilapil belongs to a Castillan clan in Liloan, Cebu. Hers is one of the earliest influential families in Liloan. She grew up in Liloan and perhaps used to swim with her nine siblings in the whirlpool-filled waters of Suba. The family compound of the Pilapils is just some steps away from where whirlpools and the Suba Bridge are. A true blue Liloanon, Pilar is.

In 1967, she put pride to her town and the whole Cebu when she won the Binibining Pilipinas title at such young age of 16 (she faked her age to 18 so she could join the pageant). At the age of 17, Pilar entered showbiz and, in the words of Ricky Lo, is one of the loveliest and most visible faces to ever grace the silver screen. She was a fine actress and once won a best actress plum at the Manila Film Festival. While in showbiz, she rocked the house not only because of her classic beauty, intelligence and wit but with her daringness and liberated attitude as well. The seemingly perfect face was not without faults as she was hooked early on with drugs and older men and her long-drawn bouts with depression.

Such a character, Pilar is. Even after her regular showbiz stint, she remains fixated to the limelight. What with her suicide attempt with sleeping pills, failed senatorial bid under nuisance presidentiable Eddie Gil and her turn of affairs with younger men.

And then after some dusts appeared to settle down, and having found her God, Pilar wrote a memoir in 2006. It was oddly titled “The Woman Without a Face”. Written in candid and revealing style, Pilar said that the book is dedicated to young women just starting their lives so “they can learn from what she’s been through.”

On why that title? Pilar wrote in the last chapter of her book:

"Looking back, I tried very hard for many years to look for the love of a father and find happiness by doing what I wanted, and what everyone wanted me to do. I did what my parents wanted. I did what my directors wanted. I did what my fans wanted. I did what my men wanted, but most of all I did what I wanted! I soared to the highest levels of success that this world had to offer, only to find when I got there that I was empty, did not know who I was, and even despaired of life itself. I really did not have a face of my own."

She confessed that after finding her God, Pilar has found herself and she has found peace. She has found love in the person of a younger man named Leo Peñas whom she married in 2002. Pilar and Leo are both Christians and share the mission in life to spread the Word of God. The woman without a face finally has found a face again. And that oh-so pretty face was first seen in Liloan. Perhaps even jumping on the waters of Liloan.

* Copyrighted pic from here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I am so happy that she found herself
and turned her life around. She is a beautiful person inside and out.