It seems like only yesterday when Carla Abellana was brought by established talent manager Arnold Vegafria to Mother Lily who lost no time in signing her up to an exclusive movie contract.
Carla was featured along with Geoff Eigenmann (her initial leading man who eventually became her real-life boyfriend) in "Rosalinda" and "The Last Prince," among other TV projects for GMA Network.
She first portrayed roles that projected innocence and a wholesome image. But now Carla is doing daring and sexy roles, first in "Asiong Salonga" where she reportedly did her first kissing scene (the lead actor is Jeorge "ER" Estregan).
Encouragement from Geoff
In the forthcoming Regal movie "My Neighbor's Wife," Carla is said to have gone all-out sexy and bold, and she doesn't have to worry about what Geoff would say because it was reported that it was her boyfriend himself who encouraged her to accept the role, that of a married woman who commits infidelity.
Opportunities like these don't come often, and why not accept them as a challenge? "Kinabahan ako sa maraming love scenes; kailangan mawala ang inhibitions ko, tinanggap ko para mawala ang kaba ko," and that was Geoff's idea too, it was reported.
It was a mature role indeed, with much kissing and love scenes (after all, she is cast as the wife of Jake Cuenca with whom she has a five-year old son). Carla apparently had no qualms doing those love scenes, as "they were needed in the story and were required by my role," she said.
Besides, she said she trusted her director. "Si Jun Lana yata yan," Carla said.
But if her grandmother, Delia Razon, has her way, she would advise Carla to take it easy. Otherwise "tuloy-tuloy na yan," she said in a phone interview. Delia admitted she did not know as to what extent Carla's "going sexy" means but she said she has overheard things about her role in "My Neighbor's Wife."
"I am not in favor of this, 'yong sinasabi nilang all-out sexiness onscreen, kaya kakausapin ko siya at pagsasabihan na hinay-hinay lang, " Delia protested.
Directed by Jun Lana, "My Neighbor's Wife" also stars Lovi Poe and Dennis Trillo as the other couple who commits infidelity.
In real life, would Carla do what her character in the movie did, getting even by having an illicit affair herself after finding out her husband has cheated on her, and with her best friend at that?
Carla shook her head. But she could forgive, definitely, she said.
"My Neighbor's Wife" opens in theaters nationwide starting on Sept. 14. But before the cast will go on a mall tour to promote the movie, they will be at Market! Market! on Aug. 27; at SM San Lazaro on Aug. 28; Robinson Dasmarinas on Sept. 4, and SM Bicutan on Sept. 10.
A case of misunderstanding?
An exchange of heated words erupted between Carla and entertainment columnist Mario Bautista at the presscon of “My Neighbor’s Wife.”
It was about an article Mario wrote where he quoted Carla. The actress claimed she never said what was in Mario's article and then emailed a complaint to him. The article was based on a press release which was part of "My Neighbor's Wife" promotion. The said press release was given out to the entertainment press, meaning, it was possible that the same quotation could have been in other articles too whether in Tagalog or English.
“I’ve written nice things about you, but I never got a thank you,” Mario told Carla. He said that he even defended her twice, when people lambasted Carla when she hosted StarStruck and when she modeled for Bench.
Mario is also wondering why he was the only one Carla sent a letter of complaint to, when the things she protested about also appeared in other publications.
Such scenario is not new in showbiz. Actors and actresses complain or vent their ire on the press when they hear of unfavorable things written or published about them. When positive things are written about them, many celebrities don't acknowledge or say thank you (though it is not expected of them).