Nora Aunor's quest to find justice for her stalled singing career has taken a new turn.
The multi-awarded singer-actress is planning to sue the Japan-based skin clinic which has recently opened a branch in the Philippines, for a surgery that allegedly ruined her singing voice. The Superstar is set to lodge a formal malpractice complaint, this time, in a local court.
This she revealed in an intimate interview after the presscon TV5 hosted to announce Nora’s back-to-back drama special “Untold Stories” and the network’s plans for her 45th anniversary in showbiz.
At the presscon proper, Nora reiterated her dream of returning to singing, which became her ticket to a showbiz career.
“Kapag nakakapanood ako ng kumakanta sa TV, naaalala ko ang sarili ko. Hinahanap ko ang pag-awit. Doon ako nag-umpisa at doon ko binuhay ang pamilya ko. Hindi pwedeng mawala ang pagkanta sa akin.”
Nora is now seeking the expertise of internationally-known surgeon Steven M. Zeitels, the same doctor who operated on Hollywood star Julie Andrews so she can sing again. Dr. Zeitels promised the Superstar that she will be able to continue her passion for singing once her surgery is done.
“Sabi ng doctor ko nung nagpa-check up ako sa Boston na hindi tinamaan ang vocal cords ko... Maibabalik naman daw sa akin ang pagkanta.”
Nora is saving money to finance her operation in a Boston hospital. The hospitalization cost she added, is $50,000. This excludes the doctor’s professional fee.
“Sana this year or early next year, baka sakaling maoperahan (ako),” she said.
The winner of the Bisato d'Oro award (a special recognition from an Italian group of independent film critics).in Venice faces a full year-end schedule.
Nora portrays the role of a nun who left the convent for the man she loves in “Untold Stories”. The show airs on Saturday, Sept. 15 on TV5. The story is reminiscent of the film “Naglalayag”, where she is paired with Yul Servo. “Untold Stories” reunites the two actors in another May-December tale.
On the heels of “Untold Stories” is “Third Eye”, Nora’s first horror project. The supernatural mystery drama, which airs Sunday, Sept. 16 casts Nora as a school janitress forced to relive a dark memory on demonic possession. The episode marks Nora’s reunion with Lorna Tolentino after 30 years.
Nora will also guest in the last few weeks of TV5’s fantasy series “Enchanted Garden.”
The critically-acclaimed “Thy Womb”, which won for its director, Brillante Mendoza, the Premio della Fondazione Ente dello Spettacolo e della Rivista del Cinematografo" special award in Venice, will be shown in Philippine theaters mid-November.
Then, it’s “El Presidente,” where Nora plays Emilio Aguinaldo’s second wife (Laguna Governor ER Ejercito plays the title role), which will be shown in the annual Metro Manila Filmfest.
“Tinitingnan ko lang ang story kung maganda. Kung ano ang takbo ng lead character,” Nora shares how she chooses her projects.
Search for young directors
The director is just as important to her. When she returned from a prolonged stay in the US, Nora asked showbiz insiders for names of competent young directors. The names of Brillante Mendoza and Adolf Alix cropped up.
Both directors went to Nora’s taping to discuss possible projects. But it was only Brillante’s project that pushed through.
“Pinuntahan ako sa bahay at sa taping ni Direk,” recalls Nora. “Tinanong ko kung pwede kaming gumawa ng pelikula. Sabi niya, next year, at tinupad naman nya ag pangako nya.”
Nora adds that she will still do a film with Alix.
Her quest for excellence also means she needs government support for worthy film projects.
“Nananawagan ako sa government natin na tumulong sa producers na gumagawa ng pelikulang makatuturan,” she said.
Christian Bautista is proud of former girlfriend and fellow Kapuso Rachelle Ann Go, who will play Gigi in West End’s “Miss Saigon” next year. …