Has ER gone too far?

Gerry Plaza

He startles everyone with his hideous laughter, especially when you see him on the upper hand while portraying villain after villain in action movies.

But of late, ER Ejercito or Jeorge Estregan or George Estregan, Jr. as we call him really takes his calling seriously.

Son of the great character actor George Estregan and nephew of former president Joseph Estrada, ER took each excruciating step one after another as he boldly set forth in careers his family is known for—politics and showbiz. And for each, he did not take things lightly, such as in the portrayals we know him best for.

We see ER as an achiever. He already pursued an acting career while he was a junior at La Salle Greenhills and continued working on three to five films a year as he graduated from high school and completed a Fine Arts degree in UP Diliman.

He then starred in more film projects until he decided to enter politics in 2002 when he won the mayoralty elections in Pagsanjan, Laguna. In 2009, ER achieved his greatest political feat—becoming the Laguna governor.

Then he braced for a showbiz comeback. And what a comeback it was! Heralding a character his uncle popularized, ER's take on the Asiong Salonga story proved that he was after elevating the Filipino motion picture craft. It almost swept the Metro Manila Filmfest awards in 2011 and earned ER an acting plum from the PMPC Star Awards for Movies.

But has ER gone too far?

Yes, ER might have achieved an incredible milestone with "Manila Kingpin: The Asiong Salonga Story" in terms of creative and production elements, but he must not expect all award-winning bodies to recognize this feat.

The mere production of the film is a feat in itself but putting the burden on the industry to take notice is unacceptable. Case in point is the Golden Screen Awards from the Entertainment Press Society. Why would ER, through publicist Jobert Sucaldito, put the organization in a bad light when it did not nominate him as Best Actor despite his sponsorship of P100,000? Is the Best Actor award for sale?

If Jobert's claims that ER was gracious enough to donate the money to the organization out of his "bukal na loob" or generosity, then why make the fuss about the nomination? If this is so, then he should have allowed EnPress to independently choose their nominees. Otherwise, he should have made a note on the donation that in exchange for the amount, the EnPress should nominate him.

His statement clearly shows this. In an interview with PEP.ph, he said: "Siguro may mga dahilan sila na hindi ako isama sa kanilang nomination, pero nakakapagtaka lang kasi halos lahat ng mga award-giving bodies ay nominated ako for best actor. Sana naisama (kahit nomination). Pero kung ayaw nila, maybe next time."

It seems the "ninong" that is Asiong Salonga hasn't gotten out of ER's system.

Editor's note: The blogger's views do not represent Yahoo! Southeast Asia's position on the topic or issue being discussed in this blog.