Sylvia Sanchez Gela Atayde Stars on Stars

Sylvia Sanchez and her beloved daughter Gela Atayde graced the latest episode of the Jeepney TV segment entitled “Stars on Stars,” through which they gave us a further look on their relationship as mother and daughter by throwing one another with questions that they never dared to ask.  

With how busy both of them are in their respective endeavors nowadays, especially Gela who reprises her role as Sanya in the newest Kapamilya series High Street, the sequel of the hit teen drama Senior High in which Sylvia used to be a part of as well, the veteran actress disclosed that it had been already a long time since they sat down and talked to each other about life, work, and anything in between. Thus, she's delighted that they were able to do it again for this episode.

Since both of them are already in the industry, along with Gela’s older siblings Arjo Atayde and Ria Atayde, most of their conversations were related to their job as actors. In the latter part of the video, they touched topics that were really personal to them.

In the plethora of projects that her mom has done in over three decades that she has been in showbiz, Gela said that it’s the hit daytime series Be Careful With My Heart (2012-2014) that created the strongest impact on her. She divulged that it was the one that enkindled her love for film and awakened her interest in acting since Sylvia would take her to their tapings in Laguna, through which the young Gela was able to observe everything happening on the set and watch her mom do her scenes.

Thus, she has apparently always dreamt of making it to the industry as well and actually attempted to audition for Goin’ Bulilit when she was four years old despite being not allowed by her mom and her school then. She wanted to be part of the show because she enjoyed watching it and she also wished to work with Miles Ocampo and her fellow bulilits who were also stars of “Mga Anghel Na Walang Langit” after meeting them on the set since Sylvia was part of the series, too. 

Unfortunately, in spite of her enthusiasm, her mom didn’t give her the permission because she wanted her to finish her studies first. She wants them to have a fallback just in case they wouldn’t get lucky in the industry and she doesn’t like to see them get frustrated and know nothing else to do aside being an artista, so they have an agreement to finish their college degree first before doing whatever they want to do in life. 

But now, even though she has not graduated yet, Sylvia already gave Gela the greenlight since she’s in her last year in college and she promised her and dad, Art Atayde, that she will complete her education and graduate.  

When asked by her mom if she had regrets about not starting early in showbiz, Gela confessed that there’s none, but only “what ifs.” With many people alleging her mom of compelling her and her Kuya Arjo and Ate Ria to follow her footsteps, Gela clarified that they were neither forced nor groomed by their mom to do so. They were only inspired by her and the works that she has done through the years. Taking her to some of her tapings, especially the ones held out-of-town in order to be with her, might be considered grooming, but it was still her choice to take the same path as hers.

At the same time, Gela confessed that she doesn’t get offended whenever people would comment that her mom and siblings paved the way for her in the local entertainment scene because that’s the truth.  “It’s true naman that I did get in because you, guys, are here. But then, in my head, i just say na hindi lang kasi nila alam ‘yong what comes with it. They don’t see what actually happens behind it,” she remarked.

Gela also opened up about the pressure being brought upon her not by her famous family, but by other people who tend to compare her with them.

“Of course, there’s that thought na I have award-winning siblings and you. I think that's something I was talking about with another ‘nepo baby’, na pagpasok there’s already a preconceived idea of who you are in showbiz. So, yes, it’s easy to get in because we have connections, but then staying in the industry is so much harder kasi you have to prove yourself from the moment you get in. Kilala ka na e, your last name’s already there, so parang everyone has the idea of who you are. You’re gonna be compared to this, you’re gonna be compared to that.” she elaborated.

With regard to the qualities that she’s thankful that she inherited from both her parents, Gela said that she possibly acquired her Daddy Art’s being nonchalant, yet being a good listener, keen observant, and emotional at the same time. Meanwhile, she’s able to obtain her Mommy Sylvia’s being a people-person and “koboy,” or someone who’s game to do everything. On the other hand, if there’s one trait of Gela that she wanted to brandish as well, Sylvia said that it’s her being nonchalant.  

Furthermore, when asked by Gela about the valuable life lesson that she learned in her 20s that she would like to impart to them, Sylvia said that it would be for them to enjoy their lives first and to fully prepare every aspect of their lives before settling down and bearing children. She clarified that she never regretted having all of them, but she thought that the timing, especially when she had Arjo in the 1990s, wasn’t that right considering the opportunities that she had to let go in order to focus on her pregnancy.

However, Sylvia also realized that she wouldn’t be able to have everything and everyone that she has right now – a happy and beautiful family and a prolific and amazing career – if ever she tweaked at least one of her decisions in the past. 

The talented mother-and-daughter tandem also graded one another, with both of them giving each other perfect scores. Gela explained, “For me kasi, 100 doesn’t necessarily mean that you are perfect, but 100 because you give what you can with what you have. Kung anong makakaya mo, ibibigay mo all the time. So, it’s 100 because I see that and I appreciate that.”

Sylvia, meanwhile, imparted that even though Gela isn’t a perfect like her, she appreciates and admires how straightforward she is to her every time she would make her feel upset, mad, and offended, yet still being respectful. Besides, it’s also Gela who would talk to her and explain the situation whenever Sylvia would have misunderstandings with her other siblings. Thus, in another life, she will definitely want to have Gela as a daughter again. 

This “Stars On Stars” episode capped off with Gela getting emotional as she delivered her message to her Mommy Sylvia, much to the latter’s delight. 

“Thank you because you’re the number one person that [has] believed in me ever since and I wouldn’t be here without you, so thank you. I’m just glad to be your daughter,” Gela uttered in between tears.

Sylvia replied by reminding her that it was only her who opened the doors for her, but the rest of everything that she’s been doing is already her work. Thus, she’s very proud that Gela is able to prove that she can do it and she knows that she’s going to be proud of her even more in the years to come.