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Friday, September 19, 2008

Rogelio Dela Rosa

Rogelio de la Rosa (born Regidor de la Rosa; November 12, 1916 – November 10, 1986) was one of the most popular Filipino matinee idols of the 20th century. Elected to the Philippine Senate from 1957 to 1963, he also was the first Filipino film actor who was able to parlay his fame into a substantial political career, paving the way for other than future Filipino entertainers-turned-politicians such as Senators Eddie Ilarde, Ramon Revilla Sr., Ramon "Bong" Revilla Jr., Jinggoy Estrada, Lito Lapid and President Joseph Ejercito Estrada.

Early Life:

He was born in Lubao, Pampanga, the son of an arnis champion. His hometown of Lubao also produced Philippine President Diosdado Macapagal, six years his senior and a future political opponent. Macapagal's first wife, Purita, was de la Rosa's sister.

While in high school, de la Rosa, along with Macapagal would regularly perform in zarzuelas as a villain. As a teenager, he was cast by his uncle, a film director, in a starring role in the silent film Ligaw na Bulaklak opposite Rosa del Rosario. The film's director, Jose Nepumuceno, gave him the screen name "Rogelio de la Rosa". However, the young actor did not then engage in a regular film career, opting instead to attend college at the Far Eastern University in Manila. He was an excellent collegiate athlete and debater in the years from 1932 to 1934. In 1933, de la Rosa won the Claro M. Recto Gold Medal in a national oratorical contest.

Film Stardom:

De la Rosa burst into stardom in the late 1930s after being frequently cast in dramas as a romantic idol opposite such actresses as Rosa del Rosario, Carmen Rosales, Emma Alegre, Paraluman, and Corazon Noble. Carmen Rosales proved to be his most durable onscreen partner, and their "love team" is said to be among the most successful in the history of Philippine movies.

When the Philippine film industry was held to a standstill during the Japanese occupation from 1941 to 1945, de la Rosa remained in the public eye as a bodabil performer at the Life Theater in Manila. After the war, he resumed his film career and proved more popular than ever. emerged as a star, perhaps the most popular film actor of the first decade of the post-war. He formed his own film production company, RDR Productions, and starred as well in productions of LVN Pictures, often with Rosales. By 1948, he was the highest paid Filipino movie actor. His success in films remained steady in the 1950s. He had been cast as the first Filipino actor to star in an American-produced movie, The Avenger. His 1955 role in Higit sa Lahat with Emma Alegre earned him the 'Best Actor' trophy at the 1956 FAMAS awards, as well as a citation as Southeast Asia's Best Actor at the Hongkong Film Festival.

Senator And Presidential Candidate:

In the 1957 general elections, de la Rosa ran and won a seat in the Philippine Senate under the banner of the Liberal Party. He served for one 6-year term spanning the 4th and 5th Congress. As a Senator, he was active in issues of particular concern within his home province of Pampanga such as fisheries and agriculture, emerging as a strong advocate for nationalization of those industries. Appropriately, de la Rosa was also interested in issues relating to the Filipino film industry, co-authoring a bill that would lead to the establishment of a Board of Censors.

After 3 years in the Senate, De La Rosa decided to run for the presidency as an independent candidate. His residual popularity as a film star, as well as the unpopularity of incumbent re-electionist Nacionalista Carlos P. Garcia made him a credible candidate. The other major candidate in the race was then-Vice President Macapagal of the Liberal Party, his former brother-in-law. Then shortly before election day, de la Rosa withdrew from the election. The reasons for his withdrawal remain a mystery. According to his official Senate biography, de la Rosa was concerned about the strength of what he perceived as the corrupt political machinery of President Garcia, and was ultimately convinced that his withdrawal from the race was the only way to ensure Garcia's defeat. Whatever the motivation, de la Rosa's gambit proved successful, and Macapagal was easily elected over Garcia.

Returning to the Liberal Party, de la Rosa was defeated for reelection to the Senate in the 1963 general elections. He would never again be elected to public office.

Diplomat And Later Years:

De la Rosa remained in public service as an acclaimed diplomat. In 1965, he was appointed Philippine Ambassador to Cambodia, an important designation considering that country's proximity to the Philippines. During the administration of Ferdinand Marcos, de la Rosa was also named as Philippine Ambassador to the Netherlands, and to the Soviet bloc countries of Poland, Bulgaria and Czechoslovakia. He was duly admired for his savvy in foreign affairs and language proficiency. He also used his position to promote Filipino art and culture and to assist Filipino artists performing abroad.

After retiring from the diplomatic corps, de la Rosa made his last foray into politics by unsuccessfully running in the 1984 Batasang Pambansa parliamentary elections. Shortly before his death from a heart attack in 1986, he played one last acting role, in a guest spot on the popular drama anthology Coney Reyes on Camera.

De la Rosa was married twice. His second wife, Carlotta Delgado was a former leading lady of his in films.

1932 – Ligaw na Bulaklak
1932 – Tianak
1932 - Ulong Inasnan
1933 - Nahuling Pagsisisi
1933 - Ang Ganid
1934 - Krus na Bato
1934 - Sawing Palad
1936 - Buhok ni Ester
1936 - Diwata ng Karagatan
1936 - Kalupitan ng Tadhana
1936 - Awit ng mga Ulila
1936 - Anak-Dalita
1936 - Lagablab ng Kabataan
1937 - Anak ng Pari
1937 - Magkapatid
1937 - Teniente Rosario
1937 - Bituing Marikit
1938 - Inang Mahal
1938 - Makiling
1938 - Sanggumay
1938 - Ang Magmamani
1938 - Bago Lumubog ang Araw
1938 - Mga Sugat ng Puso
1938 - Bukang Liwayway
1938 - Bahay-Kubo
1938 - Diwata ng Karagatan
1939 - Magkaisang Landas
1939 - Lagot Na Kuwintas
1939 - Pasang Krus
1939 - Florante at Laura
1939 - Dalisay
1939 - Ang Magsasampaguita
1939 - Takip-Silim
1940 - Senorita
1940 - Magbalik ka, Hirang
1940 - Gunita
1940 - Katarungan
1940 - Lambingan
1940 - Diwa ng Awit
1940 - Estrellita
1940 - Colegiala
1940 - Nang Mahawi ang Ulap
1941 - Panambitan
1941 - Tarhata
1941 - Tampuhan
1941 - Ang Maestra
1941 - Serenata sa Nayon
1942 - Caballero
1942 - Anong Ganda Mo
1944 - Perfidia
1946 - Garrison 13
1946 - Angelus
1946 - Dalawang Daigdig
1946 - Tagumpay
1946 - Honeymoon
1946 - Ang Prinsipeng Hindi Tumatawa
1947 - Sarung Banggi
1947 - Backpay
1947 - Ang Lalaki
1947 - Ang Himala ng Birhen sa Antipolo
1948 - Sa Tokyo Ikinasal
1948 - Bulaklak at Paruparo
1948 - Ang Vengador
1948 - Hampas ng Langit
1949 - Kampanang Ginto
1949 - Milyonarya
1949 - Bandilang Basahan
1949 - Camelia
1949 - Kidlat sa Silangan
1950 - Ang Hiwaga ng Tulay na Bato
1950 - 48 Oras
1950 - Doble Cara
1950 - Ang Kampana ng San Diego
1950 - Prinsipe Amante
1950 - Tigang na Lupa
1950 - Sohrab at Rustum
1951 - Bayan O Pag-ibig
1951 - Prinsipe Amante sa Rubitanya
1951 - Haring Cobra
1952 - Irisan
1952 - Romansa sa Nayon
1953 - Sa Paanan ng Bundok
1954 - Maala-Ala Mo Kaya?
1954 - Dakilang Pgpapakasakit
1954 - Jack & Jill
1954 - Ikaw ang Buhay Ko
1954 - Aristokrata
1955 - Ang Tangi kong Pag-ibig
1955 - Artista
1955 - Higit sa Lahat
1955 - Sonny Boy
1955 - Iyung-Iyo
1955 - Pandanggo ni Neneng
1956 - Babaing Mandarambong
1956 - El conde de Monte Carlo
1956 - Idolo
1956 - Pampanggenya
1956 - Gintong Pangarap
1957 - Sino ang Maysala
1957 - Veronica