Lilia Cuntapay and Nonong de Andres: The Two Faces of Philippine Horror Cinema

It is that time of the year once again when it is alright play dress ups and scares ourselves with various stories of horror. This will be the first time I will be doing this Halloween Special which might be a main feature here at CMABLOGS. I am a big fan of horror films, local and foreign ones alike. While there have been various fictional horror film icons which I grew fond of watching as a child (Freddy Kreuger, Chucky, Jason, Leatherface, Pinhead, and Mikhael Myers to name a few), I can't deny it that there are a few local ones which gave scared me as a child. Every Filipino already know such icons like aswang(s), mananaggal(s), tikbalang, kapre, various lamang lupa, and ghosts, but now it is time to look back and recognize two Philippine actors behind such usual icons. Let's talk about Philippine horror cinema's Lilia Cuntapay and Nonong de Andres.

Lilia Cuntapay the legendary queen of Philippine horror

More photos can be found at Lilia Cuntapay's Facebook Fan Page. Lilia Cuntapay is the legendary queen of Philippine horror.


Lilia Cuntapay is a Filipina actress who usually plays various iconic horror characters in various Philippine horror films. She got her break in various Shake, Rattle & Roll films, specifically in 1991's Shake, Rattle, & Roll 3's "Yaya" segment. She usually play as either a witch or an "aswang". She also made appearances in various television shows' Halloween special or episodes as either a witch, aswang, black/white lady, or a ghost. In a politically incorrect Philippines (show business specifically) where pretty faces are the usual protagonists and the not so pretty ones either becomes comedian/comedienne or lands a role to play various horror characters, the best thing that they discovered is Lilia Cuntapay. I can still remember how she appeared on various Halloween specials of my favorite television shows ( like Magandang Gabi Bayan Halloween Specials) and various horror films, she scared me to death specially when these horror specials do some really cool jump scares at that time. I was but a fledgling back then and thinks appears scary if they appeared as one. She isn't any particularly ugly and might have been a pretty woman in her younger years, but the wrinkles in her skin, her toothless mouth and long (white) hair brought by her old age is probably a major factor in being stereotyped in various horror roles.

Lilia Cuntapay has never been the main actor in a film and has always been an "extra" in various films and television shows besides the horror genre. Either as a passerby or just an old scary woman. But this November 2011, there will be a special indie film which solely feature the exploits, experiences and filmography of Lilia Cuntapay. Check out Six Degrees of Separation from Lilia Cuntapay here:



Official trailer of SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION FROM LILIA CUNTAPAY, a Cinema One Originals entry. Showing on November 9 to 15, 2011 at the Shang Cineplex. An interesting (if not hilarious) documentary chronicling the woman behind various horror roles in Philippine cinema.


nonong de andres philippine horror cinemas bangkay or kamatayan


Nonong de Andres is a Filipino actor who usually plays kamatayan (harbinger of death), or bangkay (corpse). His old age, frail, and extremely skinny "buto't balat" physique is what usually lands him in roles like a substance abuser (drug addict), alcoholic, old bum, homeless guy, zombie, kamatayan (spirit of death), and aswang. Like Lilia Cuntapay, he has always been an extra to various films ranging from action, horror, family and even sexy ones.

Check out a special feature (low quality Youtube uploaded video) on the real lives of Lilia Cuntapay and Nonong de Andres on GMA 7's Tunay na Buhay here:



It is not all fame and glamor in a life of a horror actor, nor it doesn't reverse the process of aging. See what is it like to be in the shoes of Lilia Cuntapay and Nonong "Bangkay" de Andres on the video above.


Behind the seemingly scary characters they play, hides the pain and joys of an everyday person. They might be actors behind some of the most scary Filipino movies, but they are still human beings. Their contribution to the Philippine horror cinema and show business as a whole are worthy of recognition and respect.

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