During the 36th Metro Manila Film Festival awards night held last December 26 at the Meralco theater in Pasig, Ang Tanging Ina Mo, Last Na ‘To lead star Ai Ai Delas Alas could barely hold back the tears as she accepted the award for Festival Best Actress. The family comedy had bagged a total of nine awards for the night, which also included Best Picture, Best Director and Best Supporting Actress.
The 46-year-old comedienne admitted that she felt the pressure building up as her film started winning more and more awards throughout the night. This was because the Best Actress award was one of the last to be announced during the show. It was hard not to see the mixture of happiness and relief when Ai Ai went onstage to receive the award. “Siyempre, nakakahiya naman kung sila nanalo, ako hindi. Nung nanalo si Uge (Eugene Domingo’s nickname) ng Best Supportingtapos si Direk (Wenn Deramas) Best Director sabi ko ‘hindi ko kinaya, mamamatay ako, nanginginig ako.’ Di ba iyak ako ng iyak? Totoo yun, kaya ako umiyak kasi natatakot ako, kasi nahihiya ako, ‘pag hindi ako nanalo hindi ba nakakahiya? Diyos ko, thank you. Thank you, Lord. Maraming salamt po, pati sa jurors. SiyempreMMFF thank you so much sa mga taong bumoto at sa Star Cinema, sa ABS-CBN family, siyempre salamat kay Direk Wenn, at sa lahat ng mga anak ko sa movie, kay Marvin, Shaina, Nikki, lahat sila magagaling dito, salamat talaga,” she said.
Ai Ai also thanked her present manager Boy Abunda, as well as her former talent managers. She also didn’t forget to thank her friends from the press, but didn’t have the time to name everyone. “Yung mga nakalimutan ko po pasensya na, papasalamatan ko na lang kayo sa labas. Siyempre dini-dedicate ko itong award na ito sa mga anak ko,” she adds.
Ai Ai also shared her award with Rosario lead actress Jennylyn Mercado, who surprisingly did not make it into being nominated in the Best Actress category. Instead, Ai Ai’s co-nominees were Marian Rivera and Carla Abellana (for Super Inday and the Golden Bibe and Shake, Rattle & Roll XII respectively). Ai Ai nonetheless admitted that she had considered Jennylyn to be a worthy contender. “Si Jennylyn na mahigpit kong kalaban.Jennylyn para sa iyo rin ito, pasensya ka na, total matanda naman ako sayo, bigay mo na ito sa akin! Bibigyan na lang kita ng marami next time,” she commented in jest.
Ai Ai also dedicated her award to one of her closest friends in showbiz, Dalaw actress Kris Aquino (who arrived at the event escorted by a group of PSG bodyguards). “Friendship, sabi mo asa ako, oh eto na oh. nanalo ako,” she triumphantly stated. Ai Ai said her Best Actress win was definitely an answered prayer for her. “Sabi ko kayGod, ‘God sana mag-top grosser kami tsaka sana Best Actress ako.’ Ayan, binigay niya agad. Isa na lang ang hinihiling ko na hindi niya binibigay, na mapangasawa ko si Vic Sotto, para pag may movie kami, kami na ang magpo-produce, hindi ko na siya kalaban sa film fest. Amin na lahat ng kita. Yun na lang ang hihintayin koLord,” she revealed to the laughing crowd.