MANILA, Philippines – The year 2017 has been a rollercoaster ride for both local and international showbiz. There was a couple who still remain mum on the real status of their relationship despite pregnancy reports, a powerful producer's downfall due to sexual harassment accusations, celebrity weddings in Paris and New Zealand, a visit from the most beautiful ladies in the universe, unexpected deaths, and more.
Rappler take a look back at the stories that got everyone talking.
1. John Lloyd Cruz and Ellen Adarna's relationship. Perhaps the most talked about relationship of the year, John Lloyd Cruz and Ellen Adarna made headlines in September when photos of their vacation in Cebu surfaced. People were surprised by their closeness as Ellen was linked to presidential son Baste Duterte, whom she admitted to dating, while John Lloyd was still linked to Angelica Panganiban, despite their breakup a year back.
Their "friendship" became the talk of the town when ABS-CBN announced that the actor was taking an indefinite leave from his work after doing his movie with Sarah Geronimo. (READ: #Couplegoals: The low-key relationship of John Lloyd Cruz and Ellen Adarna)
In November, after Ellen's marked absence from the Bench fashion show, entertainment website Pep announced that Ellen was pregnant. While the couple have yet to confirm the news, the two have been spotted in Ellen's hometwon of Cebu, where they are currently staying.
Prior to their relationship, Ellen also made headlines in May, when she and Cebu mayor Tommy Osmeña's son, Miguel, exchanged barbs about an old fight in which Miguel threatened the actress and her friends back in high school.
2. Miss Universe fever hits Manila. The Philippines was hit by the Miss Universe fever in January, when more than 80 candidates from around the world competed in the pageant held at the Mall of Asia Arena. France's Iris Mittenaere won the crown, succeeding Pia Wurtzbach of the Philippines. The country's bet Maxine Medina finished in the top 6. (READ: The year in pageants: The glitz and glam of the 2017 pageant queens)
Photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler
Ten months after the pageant, Iris crowned her successor, South Africa's Demi-Leigh Nel-Peters in Las Vegas, USA. Rachel Peters, who represented the Philippines finished in the Top 10. Following the pageant, the Department of Tourism invited some of the ladies to the Philippines in December, where they got the chance to visit Batanes, Bohol, and Camiguin.
3. The Harvey Weinstein scandal and #MeToo movement. On October 5, the New York Times released a report accusing Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein of sexually harassing numerous women in the past decades. (READ: SHOCKWAVES: The World in 2017) The report led to many women, including actresses such as Ashley Judd, Salma Hayek, Angelina Jolie, Rose McGowan, and more to come out with their stories. The hashtag #MeToo also trended worldwide, with many women speaking out against sexual harassment. A Filipino-Italian model named Ambra Gutierrez was also reported to be a victim of Weinstein. (READ: Is it too late now to say sorry?)
Since the report, Weinstein was fired from his position in the film company he co-founded, and was expelled by several organizations, including the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Science. Reports of sexual misconduct have also hounded celebrities such as Kevin Spacey, Dustin Hoffman, Matt Lauer, Mario Batali, and more.(READ: And they all fall down )
In the local scene, the Indie music scene was rocked by a report of misogynistic behavior among independent bands, after a series of tweets came out, accusing groups such as Jensen and the Flips and Farewell Fairweather lead guitarist Kim Hue Jin were accused by a girl named Adrienne Onday of sexual misconduct.
4.The celebrity weddings and babies. The local entertainment industry saw its fair share of celebrity weddings and babies. Anne Curtis' wedding to Erwan Heussaff in New Zealand and Vicki Belo's wedding to Hayden Kho in Paris were two of the most talked about weddings of the year.
In the baby boom that was 2017, actress Isabelle Daza announced she was expecting her first child with Adrien Semblat, while Pauleen Luna and Vic Sotto welcomed their first child Tali in November. Actress Kaye Abad also became a mom to her and Paul Jake Castillo's son Joaquin, while Kylie Padilla and Aljur Abrenica also welcomed their son Alas in August. Camille Prats also became a mom for the second time, after she gave birth to daughter Nala.
Screengrab from YouTube/Jason Magbanua
5. Highs and lows in the K-pop world. The K-pop world saw its share of happy and sad news this year. Early this year, fans were surprised and happy at the same time when Descendants of the Sun stars Song Joong Ki and Song Hye Kyo announced they were getting married. The couple tied the knot in Korea on October 31.
Singer Rain and his wife, actress Kim Tae Hee married in January and welcomed a baby girl in October.
Big Bang's G-Dragon came to the Philippines for his first solo concert at the Smart Araneta Coliseum with Sandara Park as his guest.
As the year came to a close, the Korean entertaiment industry mourned the death of SHINee lead singer Kim Jonghyun, who was found dead on December 18, after he committed suicide. (READ: K-pop stars, fans mourn death of SHINee's Jonghyun)
6.The Metro Manila Film Festival controversy. Even before it began in December, the Metro Manila Film Festival 2017 was already mired with controversy after many of its executive committee members resigned. According to Ricky Lee, Kara Magsanoc-Alikpala, and Rolando Tolentino, one of the reasons they left the committee was because the MMFF Execom put to much emphasis on commerce over the arts.
This year, the MMFF films were led by Vice Ganda's The Revenger Squad and Coco Martin's Ang Panday. Unlike the past years, the Parade of Stars was held in Muntinlupa City, in celebration of the city's centennial year. (WATCH: MMFF 2017 Parade of Stars)
Photo by Alecs Ongcal/Rappler
8. Star Magic Ball 2017. The annual ABS-CBN Star Magic Ball drew the biggest names in the industry. New love teams and couples also made their debut in the red carpet.
Photo by Rob Reyes/Rappler
9. The rollercoaster year of Erich Gonzales. If there was one local celebrity who weathered many challenges this year, it would be actress Erich Gonzales. In February, fans were sad to learn that she and boyfriend Daniel Matsunaga had broken up. The breakup was controversial after people speculated that one of the reasons they parted was because of money. Daniel denied this saying he has been earning his own money since he was 16.
His sister Vanessa Matsunaga-Sunga also came to his defense, asking Erich to speak up, which led the actress to fire back at her. The issue died down after Star Magic asked the two to iron out the matter privately.
' Photo by Rob Reyes/Rappler
Composer Willy Cruz, director Emmanuel 'Maning' Borlaza, and actress Zeny Zabala also said goodbye as well as theatre and TV actor Chinggoy Alonso. But it was the sudden deaths of Isabel Granada and Hashtags member Franco Hernandez that took the local showbiz scene by surprise. Isabel, who rose to fame via That's Entertainment died after she collapsed in Qatar due to a brain aneurysm. Franco, meanwhile, drowned while vacationing with fellow Hashtag member Tom Doromal and his girlfriend.
Screengrab from Instagram/isabelgranada21
11. My name is Xander Ford. In September, news of Xander Ford's cosmetic procedure made headlines. Formerly known as Marlou Arizala, Xander caught the ire of many personalities, most especially those close to Kathryn Bernardo, after a video of him lambasting her made the rounds online.
In November, Xander was in the headlines again after he was reported to be missing. He soon showed himself via videos, saying he was just resting.
12. Nadine Lustre is FHM Philippines' Sexiest Woman. Actress Nadine Lustre found herself as this year's Sexiest Woman according to FHM. This is the first time that Viva star got the title. Aside from FHM, she also started co-hosting It's Showtime with reel and real-life boyfriend James Reid.
But in October, Nadine and her family grieved for the death of her brother Isaiah, who reportedly committed suicide. She and James are set to return in a new movie and teleserye this 2018.
Photo courtesy of ABS-CBN
13. The comeback of Kris Aquino as an entrepreneur and social media personality. The year 2017 has been a big change for Kris Aquino. After leaving ABS-CBN to take care of her boys, she appeared in a travel show shown on GMA 7. Aside from her additional endorsements, she confirmed that she will appear in the movie Crazy Rich Asians to be released in mid-2018.
She also took time to concentrate on doing social media video episodes posted on her official accounts.
My Mom used to always remind me: public life=public opinion. Never say life was unfair- just make sure you are living a life that when people spread lies about you there will be a majority who won’t believe them. In other words- BEHAVE. Clarification- by kapatid i meant my sisters. (My brother is STRONG ENOUGH & thank God morally upright that he doesn’t need the bunso defending him; my sisters never chose public life, not their fault that fate made them daughters of our parents & sisters of Noy & Kris. My sons, Bimb told me- Mama, the bashers don’t bother me, i’m a good boy & i know who i am- they can’t define me for me. Omg, mas mature talaga yung bunso ko than me. Thank You God. ) The full conversation is already uploaded. Happy viewing! A post shared by Kris Aquino (@krisaquino) on Dec 29, 2017 at 11:58pm PST
14. Robin and Kylie Padilla's father-daughter relationship. The relationship between Robin and his second daughter Kylie made headlines due to Kylie's pregnancy in early January and the first meeting of Robin and his grandson.
It was in November, at the birthday of Robin's daughter Maria Isabella, that the actor saw Alas Joaquin, Kylie's son with actor Aljur Abrenica for the first time. It was an emotional moment for Kylie, as the public was aware her father and Aljur are not on good terms. Since the meeting, Robin has been spending as much time as he can with Alas, including carrying him during the wedding of one of his staff from Vidanes Marketing, the company that manages his career.
Purihin ang nag iisang Panginoong Maylikha !!! Walang pinakamasaya sa isang lolo kundi ang mayakap at mabuhat ang isa sa unang apo Allah hu Akbar napakasarap iparinig sa kanyang tenga ang Adhan/ call to prayer bilang unang pamana sa kanyang napakamusmos at matalas na pandinig. Maraming salamat sa iyo mahal kong anak na @kylienicolepadilla sa pagdala kay ALAS sa akin Alhamdulillah ganon din sa iyo @marieltpadilla wala ng hihigit pang kaligayahan sa araw na ito. Pagpupugay sa lahat ng mga kumilos para maging matagumpay ang pagkikita na ito @vidanes_cm @kayegarcia13 .... we miss you @queeniepadillarevert A post shared by robin padilla (@robinhoodpadilla) on Nov 18, 2017 at 12:43pm PST
15. Mariel de Leon and Mocha Uson feud. While there were many people who called out Mocha Uson on her qualifications after being appointed to the Presidential Communications Operations Office (PCOO), it was one tweet from Binibining Pilipinas International 2017 Mariel de Leon that got everyone talking. In her now deleted tweets, Mariel expressed her disappointment on Mocha's appointment, saying there were better people qualified for the post, In return, Mocha made a sarcastic remark that she will do her best to serve the people. Mocha has been accused of spreading fake news. (READ: Asec Mocha Uson herself spreads fake news, says Nancy Binay)
After failing to place in the Miss International competition in Japan, many believed that Mariel's outspokeness made her lose the competition. But in an interview during the promotions for Ang Panday, she said she does not regret anything that she said or done.
"...if I didn’t post that, then I wouldn’t be who I am today,” she said. “I wouldn’t be where I am today with all the things happening right now,” she said.
Mariel, along with the other Bb Pilipinas 2017 queens are set to crown their successors in March or April of 2018.