StyleBible Preview

Anne Curtis Is Back and She’s Unstoppable

by Nicole R. Cruz | Oct 5, 2021

In November, it would have been two years since Anne Curtis appeared on TV or the silver screen. But she is still hard at work–that is, as a first-time mother, among other new roles she has taken up during the pandemic. 

There’s this new video recently posted by celebrity and events photographer Magic Liwanag. It’s a short behind-the-scenes film of #AnneKulit, Anne Curtis’ last-ever concert staged in 2018. “What’s up, madlang people???” she shouts into the microphone as she appears from below the stage, where she was to sing and dance–two things the world knows she loves to do–before thousands of screaming fans. That line also happens to be the signature opener of Kapamilya noontime show It’s Showtime, which Anne had been co-hosting with Vice Ganda, Vhong Navarro, and Karylle, among others. But the last time this ballad-belting, laughter-loving TV host stepped foot on any stage was in 2019. And fans have been clamoring for her to return.

The ‘Multimedia Superstar,’ as she is called, left for Australia in November 2019 to take a maternity leave. She had planned to stay there for just a couple of months until the COVID-19 pandemic happened. In effect, Anne was separated from the world she had known since starting her career in 1997. It left ‘fanneatics’ missing her presence, but little did they know their beloved Anne was merely expanding her world and making space for things she wouldn’t be able to have time for in Manila.


Anne Curtis for October 2021

A Different Landscape 

Like all women blessed with the gift of motherhood, giving birth to Dahlia Amelie changed Anne’s life and that of her husband Erwan Heussaff. It was the couple’s well-considered decision to leave the Philippines so they could focus on being parents. The two had enjoyed their much-needed quiet time with their daughter until the pandemic and its impending lockdown put things to a halt for everyone. Anne admits it was scary from the onset but couldn’t help but share how she and Erwan agreed to see the “silver lining” that came with the situation. “It was really having all this time for our daughter, and both of us being so present,” she says.

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Anne and Erwan welcomed their first child into the world in March of 2020 and dove headfirst into the challenging yet fulfilling trials of being first-time parents. “In the beginning, it was talagang ‘team no sleep,’ and I thought that I would be trained for it–you know, shooting films and odd hours–and I thought my body would be used to it but it's so hard,” Anne shares. Eventually, she eased into the nitty-gritty and formed a daily routine, which she fondly recalls: “I'd wake up, I'd feed Dahlia, we'd go for a walk in the park and we'd sit by the flowers. I'd breastfeed her outdoors, and you know, it's these moments I think that I will never forget. Like even now, when I recall that very moment of sitting by the flowers, watching a bee and butterfly… It's just so fulfilling as a mother to be able to have that time with her.”



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Heading to the park to sit and relax might be ordinary for most people but lest we forget this was Anne’s first opportunity to slow down after being in the entertainment industry for 24 years, with a decade of those years being on It’s Showtime every day (a tedious job for those who know the kulitan and lokohan that transpire there). She admits that she had been a workaholic before the pandemic, but her time in Australia gave her the chance to “enjoy a slow-paced life” and to just “be in the moment,” which isn’t to say her days only consisted of taking Dahlia out for morning strolls. Of course, being a mother is a full-time job with its own host of skills that were all new to Anne. She likens maternal instincts to having inexplicable “superhero powers,” but other things she’s picked up on her own were coming up with endless random games for Dahlia, making baby food, and being able to “truly multitask,” for her time in Australia also consisted of remote work with brands she endorses.


Widening Horizons

The family of three flew back to Manila only last March, much to the public’s excitement, leading to a string of news reports about their return. Although it’s easy for fans to assume that work was the main reason, Anne emotionally reveals that they did it primarily for Dahlia to meet her family members, like Anne’s father and Erwan’s side of the family. Well, that did happen, and when her ‘petite fleur’ finally got to meet her granddad, Anne couldn’t help but share the precious moment on Instagram.


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Her new role as a mother has taken center stage, with her family in tow. It’s safe to say that her experience down under has shifted the way she has been approaching her life lately, especially work-wise. Despite being presented with opportunities to hit the ground running and start acting again, Anne chooses to play it safe for the sake of her child, given the still-looming threat of COVID-19. Thus, things aren’t what they used to be since before she left Manila. Instead of days varied by consecutive tapings, photoshoots, and endorsements, Anne fills the hours by spending them with Dahlia and husband Erwan. “I'm in bed at like nine or 10 p.m., which was unheard of before. Like at 9 p.m. I'm still on location, I'm shooting, or I'm on my way home… But now, I get up at 6 a.m. every morning when Dahlia wakes up. So now I'm an early bird. We have breakfast with Dahlia, and Erwan and I have coffee. And I'll have time for meetings like this,” Anne dreamily shares.


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Apart from her acting career, Anne’s also known for being an entrepreneur. BLK Cosmetics just celebrated its fourth anniversary, while her new babies—Recess, an activewear line, and Tili Dahli, a baby clothing brand co-founded with Solenn Heussaff—kickstarted during the pandemic. Her time at home has given her the opportunity to get involved in these companies on a deeper level, further honing her business acumen. Although she usually functions within the creative or marketing sphere, she reveals she has also learned to dabble in the logistics side, such as collaborating with suppliers or logistics companies–resulting in a hands-on experience she likens to school. (Zoom calls are very much part of her schedule now, too!)  



Constant Elements

Despite the slow changes that have been permeating her life at present, there are some things that haven’t changed, including her love for acting. When asked if being a mother will affect her choice of roles, Anne Curtis is quick to dismiss it: “Look at Nicole Kidman!” she laughs. “It's also very hard because I know the culture here is very different, right? Yeah, naiiba din. But for me personally, I won't let it change my passion as an actress. And as an actress, you should always be open to taking on a challenge for any role.”


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Aside from this, Anne confesses she’s still a huge fashion fan and calls herself a “chameleon” who enjoys dressing down or dressing up. True enough, you’ll see her Instagram brimming with everything from dainty dresses, athleisure (from Recess, of course), blue jeans, to designer pieces. In fact, for this cover story, Anne arrived in an oversized linen blazer and shorts, just one of her go-to casual OOTDs. Although she loves clothes regardless of the brand, she admits to enjoying high fashion shoots such as this one, where new concepts are explored through clothing. True enough, Anne easily shifted characters in every layout featuring Louis Vuitton’s Fall/Winter 2021 collection, playing the youthful art lover in one, and a funky tomboy in the next.



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Another thing that remains is her work for UNICEF for which she is an ambassador. Even before she returned to Manila, Anne would create content to help promote UNICEF initiatives. “I've actually been such a supporter of them before I even became a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador. So it worked in my favor because I've always had a heart for kids. Being a Goodwill Ambassador just took it a step further in really spreading awareness and being firm with using your voice to share your opinion about children's rights.”


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New Beginnings

Now that her feet are firmly planted in Manila (she says that this will always be her home base), the question on everyone’s minds still remains: What is next for Anne Curtis? She may not be ready to resume work just yet, what with the COVID-19 situation still on the road to improving, but fans have much to look forward to. On the topic of whether or not she’s got projects up her sleeve, she reveals she’s got “a few that she’s really, really excited about.” Anne’s last string of films was back in 2019, with Just A Stranger, Unforgettable, and The Mall, The Merrier. “There are a lot of projects that have been pitched so I'm very excited to share that with everyone once everything is confirmed and the ball starts rolling again.”


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On two other films that were released in 2018, Buy Bust and Sid & Aya, Anne describes it as a whirlwind experience, for she had to switch between personas given the simultaneous filming (with It’s Showtime on top of it all). However, Anne says she’ll have time now to focus on one project, one character, and to put herself “wholeheartedly in the role and prepare for it.” Not that she has trouble switching. In fact, it’s this uncanny ability to compartmentalize that has enabled Anne to traverse the many facets of her life, from career to family. But it’s the latter that will take precedence from now on. Her full-time role is that of being a mother and a wife, of course.


When asked about how she thinks she has grown as an individual, Anne explains, “I think maturing in the sense of knowing the level of responsibility that you have. I guess it also comes with age. You know, your priorities change in life… Whereas before it was kind of like, ‘Oh, just let this day go by, it's okay, whatever.’ But you know, even before I became a mother, I was already starting to plan ahead for my future because it's something you have to do when you mature and reach a certain age. It's kind of like, ‘Okay, life is getting real.’”


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32 films. 26 television shows. 3 businesses. Countless awards. A growing family. If Anne’s fortunes are any indication, it’s certain that she is more than just a talented celebrity with a knack for acting, hosting, and performing. She is a woman who knows how to take stock of her lot in life, understands what her priorities are, and seizes the opportunities at hand. The glass is always half full for Anne. It’ll always be that way. And you can bet she’ll make the most of it while making her mark too. When asked about her career bucket list or dream projects, Anne admits she hasn’t thought that far. But that doesn’t seem so surprising now.


“I think there are still a few things that I want to do, but at the same time, I think I have more dreams for my family. When it comes to future planning, my family now is my top priority. But that doesn't mean that I will forget my dreams, right? They're still there. I'll let you know when they happen.”


Produced by The Preview Editors

Photographed by Shaira Luna

Assisted by Lance Luna

Art Direction by Bacs Arcebal

Beauty Direction by Nicole Arcano

Makeup by Robbie Piñera

Hair by Raymond Santiago

Styled by Joy Bernardo and Jolo Bayoneta of Stylized Studio

Set Design by Tipping Point Collective

Art pieces featured: Paintings and Dolls by Jellyfish Kisses and Plant sculptures by Marionne Contreras from Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery

Words by Nicole Cruz

Special thanks to Inas Amoyo and Pia Reyes of Vinyl on Vinyl Gallery; Portia Trinidad and Deon Flores of Louis Vuitton Philippines

*All shoot attendees were tested and were negative of COVID-19 at the time of the production. Safety protocols and social distancing were implemented during the photo shoot.

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