Stars may come and go, but a great love team is forever. It is almost impossible for the Philippine entertainment industry to survive without "love teams" on the small and big screens, essential elements for delivering the ratings and attracting advertisers. Very rarely can any new star be launched to stardom without the requisite love team with which fans can readily identify them to be part of. And if a pair clicks, oozing the kilig factor and all, ding ding ding cry the movie tills–jackpot!
But for many Filipino viewers, love teams are considered more than just a commercial product, toeing the line between reel and real so that audiences are intrigued enough to ask, "Are they or aren't they (together)?" And more importantly, curious enough to tune in or shell out for a movie ticket.
SPOT.ph thought of 10 local on-screen sweethearts who captured the hearts of Pinoy audiences through the years (in no particular order):
Tirso Cruz III and Nora Aunor
First appeared together in: The Musical Teenage Idol
Love team appeal: It seemed like a case of east meets west. The guy named Tirso (Pip), blessed with fair skin and aristocratic features, was paired with Nora (Guy), a traditional kayumanggi and dalagang Pilipina. And what appeared to be an odd pairing at first turned into a phenomenon. In the '70s, they ruled the box office. And even Maria Leonora Theresa, the doll Pip gave Guy became a pop culture sensation. Talk about iconic.
Memorable movies/shows together: Tell Nora I Love Her; Young Love; And God Smiled at Me; Guy and Pip; Till We Meet Again; The Young at Heart; Always in my Heart; My Little Brown Girl; A Gift of Love; My Blue Hawaii; and Winter Holiday.
Why we liked them: They were the proud parents of a life-sized doll that spawned a hit song! This couple was way ahead of Brangelina, if you ask us.
A fan's ode to Guy and Pip set to "Nora and Tirso" sung by Ike Lozada
Vilma "Vi" Santos and Edgar "Bobot" Mortiz
First appeared together in: The Sensations
Love team appeal: Like a breath of fresh air, the Vi-and-Bot love team radiated genuineness in every sense of the word. As onscreen partners, they were a perfect fit for romantic comedies because of their collective sunny and comical charm. As off-screen sweethearts, they were pure, happy, and accessible–the kind of characteristics that make up an effective love team. And says an older fan: "Nakakakilig kasi totoo sila."
Memorable movies/ shows together: The Sensations; My Darling Eddie; Jukebox King; Young Love; From the Bottom of my Heart; I Love You, Honey; My Pledge of Love; Renee Rose; Songs and Lovers; Dama de Noche, Don't Ever Say Goodbye; and Leron Leron Sinta.
Why we like them: They did 14 movies together in one year, probably a record for any love team.
Vilma Santos and Edgar Mortiz in Love Letters.