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Kathryn Bernardo’s two decades of milestones

by Joanna Deala

THERE is no denying that Kathryn Bernardo is one of the most successful actresses in this generation. 

The public saw how Kathryn’s hard work propelled her to stardom, from portraying young versions of lead characters in small-screen projects to breaking box office records and earning multiple recognitions both here and abroad. 

The 27-year-old actress has been in the entertainment industry for over two decades, kicking off her acting career in 2003 when she joined the cast of ABS-CBN’s “It Might Be You” as the young counterpart of the lead character portrayed by Bea Alonzo.

Her performance as a child actress earned her more roles in both television series and movies. But it’s not only in acting that Kathryn strives to be a young and promising individual.

Let’s take a look back on what she has achieved for 20 years, both in and outside the entertainment industry:

Goin’ Bulilit pioneer

Kathryn was only 10 years old when she landed her first regular television show via the youth-oriented series “Goin’ Bulilit” in 2005, along with other child stars and comedian Dagul.

She was among the pioneers of the popular sketch comedy series until she graduated in 2008.

Another regular show

In 2006, Kathryn had another regular show when she was tapped to portray the role of Maya in the superhero series “Super Inggo.” 

Kathryn’s character is the snotty love interest of Budong, the human counterpart of Super Inggo, played by Makisig Morales. She has a crush on Super Inggo.

Acting breakthrough

After years of building her name in the entertainment scene, Kathryn finally got her breakthrough role as Mara, the protagonist in the 2010 television remake of “Mara Clara.”

She headlined the project with Julia Montes, who played the role of Clara. “Mara Clara” was first aired by ABS-CBN in 1992, starring Judy Ann Santos and Gladys Reyes.

Successful tandem

In 2011, Kathryn and Julia reunited in the teen show “Growing Up.” 

Kathryn was partnered with other actors in her previous project, but her pairing with Daniel Padilla in the youth-oriented series was well-received by many viewers. This was their first project together and marked the beginning of their reel-to-real tandem, popularly known as KathNiel.

In “Growing Up,” Kathryn portrayed Ella, a tough but sweet teenager who develops romantic feelings for her bad-boy classmate Patrick, played by Daniel.

Their overflowing chemistry earned Kathryn and Daniel back-to-back projects, both on big and small screens. Their tandem soared so high that they became one of the most promising pairings in the country in today’s generation.

Together, they achieved greater lengths as they broke box office records and bagged multiple accolades, including their first box office awards as Box Office King and Queen in 2017 for their performance in the 2016 romance-drama film “Barcelona: A Love Untold.”

First book

It was also in 2016 when the Teen Queen launched her first-ever book, titled “Everyday Kath: 365 Ways to Be a Teen Queen,” in time for her 20th birthday celebration. 

The book hopes to give confidence to each girl who wants to become the best version of themselves.

According to Kathryn, her book “compiles 365 anecdotes, lessons, and tips that you can use so you can also become your own Teen Queen!”

First business venture

Kathryn added another feather to her cap when she ventured into entrepreneurship with the launch of her first business “KathNails” in 2017 in a mall in Quezon City.

Her salon and spa business now has five other locations in Metro Manila and promises to provide professional nail care and other pampering services like hand and foot care and threading.

Makeup line launch

The actress turned her dream of having her own cosmetic line into reality when she collaborated with local beauty brand Happy Skin to launch her “Generation Happy Skin” Collection in 2018.

Her makeup collection consists of six beauty products: a pressed powder,  a powder blush, mascara, a liquid brow pen, matte lippies, and water tints.

In an Instagram post, Kathryn shared that she developed the products herself with the help of the Happy Skin team “to empower all the girls out there.”

Solo project after 8 years

Filipinos, especially her fans, had grown used to seeing her in television dramas and films with Daniel. But 2019 offered a change in Kathryn’s acting career.

The actress had her first solo movie after eight years of back-to-back projects with her reel-to-real partner, when she starred in the romance film “Hello, Love, Goodbye,” along with “Asia’s Multimedia Star” Alden Richards.

The Cathy Garcia-Molina-helmed film was considered the “highest grossing Filipino film of all time,” recording a worldwide gross of P880,603,490 on September 3, 2019, according to Star Cinema.

Outstanding Asian Star

The 27-year-old actress made waves on the international stage when she was awarded Outstanding Asian Star at the 2023 Seoul International Drama (SDA) Awards.

With this prestigious recognition, Kathryn has joined the ranks of local stars hailed as SDA winners: Belle Mariano, Dingdong Dantes, Alden, Gabby Concepcion, and Dennis Trillo.

The award came following her exceptional performance in ABS-CBN’s hit series “2 Good 2 Be True” with Daniel.

Another hit solo project

Kathryn continues to make headlines as she collaborated with internationally-acclaimed actress Dolly de Leon for the dark comedy film “A Very Good Girl.”

The movie, which had its own Hollywood release, became the talk of the town as netizens praised Kathryn and Dolly for their hair-raising portrayals of their characters as Philomena Angeles/Mercy Novela and Molly Suzara, respectively.

“A Very Good Girl” follows how Philo plots meticulous revenge against retail mogul Molly after the latter fired her from her job.

On Friday, December 1, Netflix Philippines announced that the film will be available on the streaming platform on December 27.



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