Monday, July 20, 2009

4. SAMPAGUITA PICTURES: Up from the Ashes

Lights, camera, action!
Spotlight on this circa 60s ashtray from Sampaguita Pictures decorated appropriately with the masks of Tragedy and Comedy in relief. Hundreds of these must have been given away to press people and friends at past studio functions and holidays—although it could have also been presented to a movie star. (Picture kontrabida Rita Gomez stubbing her cigarette on this ashtray while letting out her trademark laugh. Bwahahahaha!) . Cheaply made, this ceramic ashtray miraculously survived unused, and was found in a Kamuning thrift shop.

Sampaguita Pictures, founded in 1937, was a premiere movie studio that gave us unforgettable movie stars like Carmen Rosales, Rogelio de la Rosa, Pancho Magalona, Tita Duran, Gloria Romero, Susan Roces, Luis Gonzales, Tirso Cruz II and Nora Aunor, among others. The studio also produced such classics as Bituing Marikit., Paru-parong Bukid, Maalaala Mo Kaya?, Amy, Susie and Tessie, Talipandas, Silveria, Dyesebel and Eva Fonda. Mike de Leon’s Batch ’81 was its last production.

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