Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2009 Bianca Manalo likes kontrabida roles, is happy to be FHM cover girl, and misses friend Melody badly

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"Siyempre ang pangit tingnan as a beauty queen na 'yon ang role mo di ba? Kontrabida. Pero feeling ko, kaya ko naman siya i-portray dahil 'yung mukha ko, kaya namang ayusan na mukhang mataray," Bianca says.


Kontrabida. This is Bianca Manalo's dream role.

Although she enjoys playing her comic character in the ABS-CBN's teleserye Magkaribal, Bianca Manalo said she also wants to play a villainess.

She revealed this and more to PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) at the launch of Fashion One last September 11, at the Republiq, Resorts World in Pasay City.

The beauty queen, who plays the bubbly friend of Gelai Agustin (played by Bea Alonzo) in Magkaribal, said that while comedy comes naturally to her, she really wants to do "bad girl" roles.

"Nage-enjoy ako sa comedy. Pero siyempre, gusto ko din yung role na kontrabida," the Bb. Pilipinas-Universe 2009 said.

Bianca is aware that this role is not usually given to beauty queens.

"Siyempre ang pangit tingnan as a beauty queen na 'yon ang role mo di ba? Kontrabida. Pero feeling ko kasi kaya ko naman siya i-portray dahil 'yung mukha ko kaya namang ayusan na mukhang mataray, so gusto ko din siya ma-try one day," said the 5-foot-10 stunner.

But Bianca admits that comedy comes to her easily because she's a fun-loving person.

"Parang natural ko lang. Kunwari, kasama ko yung mga friends ko, tapos 'pag nagsasalita ako, tumatawa sila. Yun ang nagugustuhan nila sa akin kasi natural na natural daw sa akin na nakakatawa ako," she said.

POSING FOR FHM. Bianca is happy to be this month's FHM cover girl.

Does she have plans of baring more of herself onscreen?

"May mga tao na, siyempre, iniisip nila, 'ano magpapa-sexy ka na ba?'

"Ako kasi pag tinignan mo naman 'yung pictures [sa FHM], normal beach photo shoot siya. Same lang dun sa ginawa naming photo shoot sa Bahamas last year sa Ms. Universe," she said.

Bianca said her FHM shoot was no different from other pictorials she has done as beauty queen and model.

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"Kaya lang siya naiisip na sexy kasi nasa FHM. Pero kung ilalagay mo 'yung pictures ko sa Cosmo o kaya sa Metro, typical photo shoot lang siya."

She confessed that she didn't expect to get the offer to be an FHM cover girl.

"Siyempre at first, sabi ko, 'Seryoso, FHM? FHM agad?' gumanon ako.

"Tapos, biglang sinabi sa akin, 'Ano ka ba rumarampa ka ngang naka-two piece, e, magpo-pose ka sa magazine, ayaw mo?'

"Sabi ko, 'Oo nga naman, di ba? So yun, tinanggap ko na din agad siya!" Bianca said, although she had some reservations.

"Kinausap ni Joji Dingcong [talent manager] yung editor-in-chief ng FHM na si Mr. Allan [Madrilejos], to make sure na kelangan classy, hip, sosyal yung dating. Kasi yung family ko nga, medyo conservative.

"Tapos, knowing na lahat kami beauty queens, hindi naman pwedeng bigla ko na lang sisirain yung legacy namin kasi biglang super sexy yung gagawin ko," she said.

Bianca's older sister Katherine Anne Ramos Manalo holds the Bb. Pilipinas-World 2002 title and was a finalist in the Ms. World Pageant. Her aunt is the first-ever Bb. Pilipinas International, Nini Ramos Licaros.

"Pero happy naman ako sa outcome kasi hindi naman siya malaswa tignan," she says of her FHM cover.

REMEMBERING MELODY GERBASCH. The mood turned serious when Bianca started talking about her batchmate, Melody Gerbasch, who was Bb. Pilipinas-International 2009.

"Si Melody kasi, homebody 'yan, eh. Hindi siya ganito [party animal]. Yayain mo siya sa isang event, sasama iyan, pero one hour lang. Uuwi na 'yan, kasi hindi daw niya kaya yung mag-stay up ng hanggang late. Talagang antukin siya... sobrang antukin."

Melody died in a vehicular accident on August 21. She and her companions were on their way to Naga City when their Toyota Innova collided with a passenger bus.

Bianca said she was clueless about what happened to Melody until showbiz reporter Gretchen Fullido approached her for an interview.

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"Sabi niya mangangamusta lang daw siya tungkol sa Magkaribal at 'yung mga upcoming projects ko. Tapos yung next question niya, 'Anong masasabi mo na patay na si Melody kaninang umaga?'

"So parang ako, 'Hindi nga?'

"Sabi niya, 'Oo nga.'

"Inisip ko, 'Ano ba ito, joke?'"

She continued, "Tapos, biglang pinapatay niya [Gretchen Fullido] yung camera tapos in-explain niya sa akin... Kinuha ko yung phone ko. Pagtingin ko, ang dami ng text.

"Tapos, una hindi pa ako umiyak. Pag sakay ko ng car, sobrang breakdown, as in breakdown talaga. Pumunta ako sa condo ni Marie Anne Umali, yung Bb. Pilipinas-World namin. The three of us used to spend a lot of time in her condo," she recalled.

Bianca said that although she knew Melody for only a year, they were like old friends.

"Alam kong one year lang kaming magkaibigan, pero malalim talaga iyong pinagsamahan namin, as in mga problema niya sinasabi niya sa akin.

"Tapos naalala ko pag tine-text ko iyan pagka may problema siya, magrereply 'yan sa akin: 'Nakakainis ka talaga Bianca, lagi mo ako pinapaiyak,'" she recalled.

Bianca said she and Melody were supposed to meet up with some friends in Tagaytay.

Instead, "Magkakasama kami sa burol ni Melody. Sobrang sad. Bakit ganun?"

PREMONITION OF DEATH. Bianca said Melody must have had premonitions of her own death.

"Sa Bb. Pilipinas office kasi, may tatlong pictures kami dun IUW—so, si Melody, ako, at saka si Ann." Bianca was referreing to the arrangement of the photos, which went: Miss International, Miss Universe, Miss World.

She continued, "Two weeks before siya namatay, bumabagsak daw yung picture niya. So, itinabi muna. Tapos pumasok daw si Melody sa office, nakita niyang wala 'yung picture niya.

"Sabi niya, 'Bakit hindi naka-hang yung picture ko? Sabi nila, 'E, kasi nalalaglag, e.'

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"So, parang ngayon, iniisip nila, 'Shucks, ano iyon?'"

Bianca recalled another incident.

"Tapos one week bago siya namatay, may isang event sa SMX Convention Center sa Pasay City. Yung reigning Bb. Pilipinas-World [Czarina Gatbondon], yung World namin [Marie Ann Umali], tsaka si [Melody].

"Nagpunta dun naka-all white.

"Sabi daw ni Melody, 'Kulang na lang wings, mukha na tayong angels, para tayong kukunin ni Lord,' ganun.

"Ngayon iniisip namin, 'Melody naman, bakit ka kasi nagsalita nang ganun?' Para bang nagpapaalam na siya talaga."

Bianca said it will take time for her to recover from the loss of her friend.

"I can't believe wala na siya. Nung burol, tinitignan namin 'yung pictures niya, parang feeling namin buhay pa din siya.

"Sobrang hirap, lalo na 'pag nakita mo 'yong body niya dun sa kabaong.

"Alam mong hindi siya ganun e, na ang ganda-ganda niyang babae. Bakit kailangan ganun siya mamatay?"

She tried to rationalize Melody's accident.

"Siguro, tapos na nga 'yung misyon niya sa buhay. Pero malungkot, kasi napakabata pa ni Melody."

"Parang ang sad na 'pag tinatawag kami, hindi na kami kumpletong tatlo," Bianca sighed.


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