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The Ever Theater is located along the once bustling Rizal Avenue in Manila. Owned by the Rufino family, the theater was designed by National Artist Juan Nakpil. Dubbed as the most luxurious in the Far East, it opened its door to the public in 1954 with “Prince Valiant” as its inaugural release. With a seating capacity of 1,300, the theater was praised by Walter Gropius, a renowned architect, for its outstanding qualities and architectural designs.
Browsing through the pages of a 1955 Souvenir Brochure commemorating Ever's first anniversary, brings back golden memories of days gone. Once stood magnificently, the building is currently closed as a theater but now serves as a commercial arcade.
"Boldly filmed to stop Flesh-Traffic and to protect the honor of our Maria Claras," says the blurb of the 1954 movie, Sex Gang. Where as sex trade and human trafficking are so rampant nowadays, I never expected that a movie like this existed way back in the 50s.
"Sex Gang" (1954)- Stars Jose Padilla, Jr., Eddie Del mar, Rosita Noble, Fernando Royo, Elvira Reyes, Osacr Keesee, Lopito, Vicente Liwanag and Mario Barri/ Directed by Mike Velarde
Delia Razon is Lucy May Gritz, an Ilongga with German-American roots. She joined the acting business when she was 18 as a bit player in LVN studio. Her first film was the Lilia Dizon starrer Krus na Bituin in 1949. After barely four pictures, LVN matriarch Dona Narcisa de Leon saw a special spark in the spritely lass and assigned her to lead in the mammoth hit Prinsipe Amante, opposite Rogelio dela Rosa. She was best remembered on the many movies she made with Mario Montenegro, mostly costume epics.
Jaime de la Rosa started his film career using the screen name Jimmy de la Rosa, during the late 30s. At about the same time, he was also studying law. His first movie was Mga Anak ng Lansangan (1939) for Eastern Pictures. The next year, he did three films: Cadena de Amor , Bawal na Pag-ibig and Kahapon Lamang. And just before the outbreak of World War II, he was able to finish Ibong Sawi (1941) for Excelsior Pictures. But even the war couldn't stop the wheel of Jaime's fortune. Instead of putting his life to a halt, he married Beatriz, his hometown sweetheart, and started a family. After the war, Jaime resumed acting for LVN Pictures, starting with Garrison 13 in 1946, followed by his solo, Aladin (1947) and a string of many lead roles until 1958. During his heydays, he was one of the most sought leading man. As such, he lent his lead status to female stars who were primed for stardom like Nida Blanca in Korea (1952), and Charito Solis in Nina Bonita (1955). (From: Internet sources)
These two great LVN stars appeared together in a string of memorable movies, among them, Satur in 1951 and Luksang Tagumpay in 1956 where it won the FAMAS Best Picture that year.
Another set of wonderful drawings and illustrations from National Artist Carlos 'Botong' Francisco. Titled, The Native Land's Mythological Monsters, the great artist from Angono captured the world of native mythology rendering his own interpretation of the manananggals, aswang, tikbalang, nuno sa punso, among others.
National Artist Carlos ‘Botong’ Francisco also did drawings and illustrations on Bernardo Carpio, a legendary figure in Philippine mythology, in which the great artist from Angono masterfully illustrated and executed. It was published in the This Week Magazine in 1955.
Here's the second of three parts--- "Bernardo Carpio"