Colleagues, fans remember ‘seven legendary decades’ of Anita Linda in Philippine cinema

June 10, 2020 - 1:05 PM
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Anita Linda
Undated file photo of veteran actress Anita Linda in her older years. (Photo from Pilipino Star Ngayon)

Tributes poured in for veteran performer Anita Linda, considered the oldest active actress in the entertainment industry, as reports of her passing on Wednesday morning made the news.

The 95-year-old cinema icon died at 6:15 a.m. at her residence. Her daughter Francesca Legaspi said that she succumbed to heart failure after several days of labored breathing.

Director Adolfo Alix Jr. also confirmed the news of Linda’s death and expressed his condolences through social media.

He directed the actress in the movies “Presa,” “Circa” and “Adela,” where she was acclaimed best actress by the 10th Cinemanila International Film Festival, the Gawad Tanglaw Awards and the Young Critics Circle.

“This is a very sad day for me. I am trembling as I am gathering my thoughts… She is like my Lola and part of my family. The great Anita Linda has passed away this morning at 6:15 AM at 95,” part of Alix’s post reads.

This is a very sad day for me. I am trembling as I am gathering my thoughts… She is like my Lola and part of my…

Posted by Adolfo Borinaga Alix Jr. on Tuesday, June 9, 2020

 

Linda’s passing was also mourned by Liza Diño-Seguerra, the chair of the Film Development Council of the Philippines (FDCP). She recalled her memorable encounter with the veteran actress who told her that she loves life itself.

“It was such a humbling experience to have been able to spend a moment with one of our country’s living treasures,” Diño-Seguerra wrote.

I just heard about the passing of the Great Anita Linda from director Adolfo Borinaga Alix Jr., and it's…

Posted by Liza Diño-Seguerra on Tuesday, June 9, 2020

 

Writer-performer Juan Miguel Severo also thanked Linda for devoting “legendary seven decades” of her talent to the Philippine cinema industry.

Other fans fondly recalled their onscreen memories of the highly acclaimed actress whom they have grown to love as their own “grandma.”

“RIP Anita Linda. I can still remember how I cry whenever I see her cry on movies. She’s like my lola,” wrote another Twitter user.

There were also those who remembered how Linda’s movies and television appearances have made an impact on them, whether as a child or in their adulthood.

“What a colourful and wonderful life, personal & cinematic, both. Her character as an aging and ‘has been’ film actress in Mario O’hara’s ‘Babae sa Bubungang Lata’ is a personal favourite that haunts me up to now. Sleep well, Anita Linda!” a Twitter user said.

Another fan briefly enumerated some of the most memorable movies she appeared in and regarded her among the industry’s “great Pinoy actress.”

“I remember her in her award-winning movies like ‘Lola’ and ‘Ang Babae Sa Bugugang Lata,'” another fan wrote.

“It’s rare for an actress to find a second (third? fourth?) wave of career resurgence when she’s already in her 80s. But Anita Linda surely loved acting so much she continuously gave us great performances up until her 90s,” wrote another fan.

One of cinema’s greats

Born Alice Buenaflor Lake in 1924, Linda was a two-time FAMAS award-winning and Gawad Urian-winning actress who earned several acclamations throughout her decades-long acting career.

Reports said that she was just six years younger than the Philippine cinema industry which celebrated its 100th-anniversary last year.

Linda appeared in various films and worked with the industry’s acclaimed filmmakers like Lino Brocka, Mike de Leon and Mario O’Hara.

Her roster include “Sisa,” “Sawa sa Lumang Simboryo,” “Tinimbang Ka Ngunit Kulang,” “Isa Dalawa Tatlo,” “Jaguar,” “Takaw Tukso,” “Ang Babae sa Bubungang Lata,” “Mater Dolorosa,” “Adela,” “Lola Igna” and “Circa,” among others.

She was also the oldest actress to receive the FAMAS for her role in “Ang Babae sa Bubungang Lata.”

Last year, FDCP honored Linda for her immense contributions to the Philippine cinema by giving her an achievement award.