Zsa Zsa Padilla first became famous as one of the top female recording artists in the country, with her sultry, scintillating voice adorning many OPM hits in the 1980s after a short stint with the purveyor of Manila sound, Hotdog.
But as the 1990s began, so was a new chapter in her entertainment career. Zsa Zsa started her widely acclaimed, multiple awarded run as one of the country’s top actresses.
After winning her breakthrough PMPC Star Awards for Movies acting award in a supporting role for “Minsan Lang Kita Iibigin” in 1994, the Kapamilya network immediately brought her into the dramatic limelight with her own Star Drama Presents: Zsa Zsa mini-series and a role in the family drama Familia Zaragoza, as Divina. She would go on to receive another acting plum, this time from the PMPC Star Awards for TV.
And while she was emerging as an acting luminary, her being the Divine Diva was never lost, and ABS-CBN included her in the roster of talents of its Sunday noontime show ASAP in 1998.
And by 1999, Zsa Zsa became part of a major Kapamilya series, the romantic-comedy-drama Labs Ko Si Babe, with the premiere love team of Jolina Magdangal and Marvin Agustin, playing the character Mayor Diwata Royales.
She would then appear alongside another top love team at the time—Judy Ann Santos and Piolo Pascual—in another primetime teleserye, Sa Puso Ko Iingatan Ka in 2001, as Nieves Quevedo-Pacheco, the adoptive mother of Judy Ann’s character Patricia.
Zsa Zsa would then host a music talent reality show Born Diva in 2004.
In the next year, Zsa Zsa would then be part of the ensemble cast of the television adaptation of the classic box office hit Bituing Walang Ningning, playing Rosa Mia, the estranged biological mother of Sarah Geronimo’s character Dorina.
She would then branch out to the fantasy genre as Cindy in Mars Ravelo’s Lastikman with Vhong Navarro. Then she appeared in an Maalaala Mo Kaya episode, “Shell” in 2011, and then reunite with Sarah Geronimo in the drama 1DOL as Eleanor, mother of Sam Milby’s character Vince.
By 2011, Zsa Zsa touched hearts with her portrayal of Luisa, biological mother of the Angelman syndrome sufferer Budoy played by Gerald Anderson in the teleserye named after the character.
Zsa Zsa’s subsequent projects from 2013 to 2014 were in fantaseryes as villains, starting with the Coco Martin-starrer Juan dela Cruz as the Reynang Aswang Laura. Then she appeared in Mars Ravelo’s Dyesebel with Anne Curtis in the title role as the main antagonist Ena.
She would then revert back as a protagonist in The Story of Us with Kim Chiu and Xian Lim in 2016 as Myra, estranged mother of Kim’s character Tin.
And in 2017, Zsa Zsa would become the talk of the town and a viral topic on social media when she figured in action-packed scenes and confrontations with Maja Salvador’s character Lily Cruz as the villain Helena Montoya or the Red Dragon in the immensely successful revenge drama Wildflower.
Zsa Zsa will make a comeback this year reuniting with Kim Chiu and Xian Lim, in the much-awaited family drama Love Thy Woman, playing Helen, the mother of Xian’s character David, a married man who gets involved in an illicit relationship with Kim’s character Jia, half-sister of his wife Dana, portrayed by Yam Concepcion.
With these impeccable portrayals in Kapamilya shows and teleseryes, Zsa Zsa indeed has proven through the years her versatility and brilliance as an actress on top of a remarkable singing career.