By Edwin P. Sallan
Unlike other kids her age, Eula Valdez didn’t want to be a princess in a fairy tale. Believe it or not, her original fantasy was to be a ninja.
It came as no surprise, therefore, that Eula collected the Marvel comic book “Elektra: Assasin” back in high school. Written by Frank Miller in 1986, the comic features the sword-wielding, ninja-trained female assassin who is both an enemy and a love interest to the superhero Daredevil. She would later be portrayed by Jennifer Garner in a feature film version.
Right about the same time, Eula also started collecting medieval swords. So when TV5 offered her to star as Eula Caballero’s mysterious mother in “Cassandra: Warrior Angel” in an epic story that involves a war between angels and demons, the elder Eula knew that this was a project that was right up her alley.
“Na-excite ako. I’m a physical type of person so I think I’m going to enjoy this. Gusto ko din kasing action. I don’t always get to be in fantaseryestaposdito, may superpowers pa ang character ko so I’m really looking forward to doing this,” the 44-year old actress told InterAksyon during the show’s story conference last week.
Always the free-spirited type, Eula’s career has not been defined by conforming to trends, which also explains her longevity in the business. She chooses her vehicles well and for the most part, those choice have paid off well.
Along with Aga Muhlach, Herbert Bautista, William Martinez, YayoAguila, Jobelle Salvador and JC Bonnin, Eula was one of the lead stars of the original “Bagets”, the coming-of-age teen flick by Maryo J. Delos Reyes that is now considered a classic.
It wasn’t until the start of the new millennium that she finally became a household name and received acting accolades when she took on the now iconic role of Amor Powers in the ABS-CBN primetime soap “PangakoSa ‘Yo”. Since then, Eula has become busier than ever and even took on projects that surprised even her own fans.
In 2006, Eula was invited to appear on the cover of “Maharot”, the cover of the second album by rock band Kamikazee. “Actually, nag-email silasa akin, asking me if I want to be on the cover of their album and I thought, why not?” she recalled.
A huge fan of rock music herself, citing Van Halen as one of her favorites (“I saw their concert last year in the States, anggaling pa rinnila!”), Eula also said she had a lot of fun watching Kamikazee perform.
“Ang gulo nila tapos na-meet ko pa angmga parents nila. Nakakaaliw,” she fondly remembered.
That same year, Eula was also prevailed upon to finally do an FHM cover shoot after a two-year courtship from the magazine. It was one of the magazine’s most popular issues ever, and she again did another cover pictorial five years later in 2011.
“I don’t think I’ll be doing another FHM cover shoot again. May maipapakita na ako sa mga apo ko. At least, once upon a time, naging cover akong men’s magazine,” she quipped.
Another smart career move for Eula was her occasional foray into theater. Although she does not always appear on stage, it is usually a welcome treat for critics and audiences alike. In 2006, she won Best Actress in a Musical from the Aliw Awards Foundation for “Zsa Zsa Zaturnnah”.
Last year, her portrayal of Claudia was also recognized by the Broadway World Philippines Awards as Best Featured Actress in a Musical.
“Hindi ko ng aalam na nominated at nanalo. Nakatanggap lang akong mga text messages about it. But theater is something I love doing. This year, I’ll be playing Morticia Addams in the musical staging of ‘The Addams Family’ by Viva Atlantis. It should be fun,” she said.
In explaining why she chooses to do the kinds of projects that she does, Eula said that as an artist, it’s just natural to get crazy sometimes.
“Bilang artista, may karapatan ka din naman magkatopak from time to time, she mused. “Sabi ko nga sa kanila dito sa ‘Cassandra’, ‘FYI, meron akong puting pakpak na malaki na pinagawa ko. Wala lang, pang pictorial lang.”
Pilipinas Global Network Limited (PGNL) is a joint venture between Philippine Long Distance Telephone Company (PLDT), the largest and leading telecommunications company in the Philippines, and ABC Development Corporation (“ABC5”), the operator of TV5, the fastest growing terrestrial channel in the Philippines. It acts as the sole and exclusive distributor and licensee of the programs, shows, films and channels of TV5. It distributes these media content via syndication and via its international linear channels, namely: Kapatid TV5 and Aksyon TV International.