Year in Review 2020: Top male celebrities

·7 min read

By Ana Catalina Paje

Yahoo Philippines gives you a rundown of the most searched male celebrities in 2020.

Raffy Tulfo

The hard-hitting broadcaster Raffy Tulfo, dubbed “King of Public Service,” might be taking a much-needed break from broadcasting. In October, he was advised by his cardiologist to ease off from his job or retire entirely due to a heart condition, but Raffy assured his audience that he is managing his stress well.

Tulfo’s famed online program “Raffy Tulfo in Action” has amassed roughly 17 million subscribers on YouTube. In fact, it has grown so popular that even celebrities have sought his help. In June 2020, Tulfo helped apprehend the abusive boyfriend of vlogger Ivana Alawi’s sister, Amira Alawi.

Tulfo’s program addresses a myriad of concerns, from domestic squabbles to corruption among high-ranking officials. The daytime public service program offers the same formulaic brand of “instant justice” that the Tulfo brothers have capitalized on in their past radio and TV programs such.

Some of the more controversial topics in the program for this year include; the complaint of Janella Salvador’s personal assistant against the young actress, and the tiff between comedian Super Tekla and his non-showbiz partner.

Hyun Bin

Actor Hyun Bin charmed the world with his portrayal of a handsome and charismatic North Korean army captain in the K-drama series “Crash Landing on You”.

Like all South Korean men, Hyun Bin enlisted in the army where he served as a marine, and was even recognized as an exemplary soldier. Reports claim that he may have drawn from this real-life experience to realistically portray the lead role in the hit series featuring an unconventional love story between a North Korean military man and a South Korean heiress.

Rumors of a romantic relationship between him and his lead actress Son Ye Jin did not affect Hyun Bin’s work. The pair first appeared together in a 2018 movie, “The Negotiation,” where Hyun Bin played his first villainous role as a kidnapper. Despite his denial, their fans continue to “ship” the pair based on their palpable chemistry in the K-drama series.

Fernando Poe Jr.

With roughly 300 films under his belt, Da King has a storied showbiz career. His successful five-decade stint in the industry proves that he was given the royal moniker, “King of Filipino movies,” for good reason. Da King’s complete body of work is a testament to his legacy in Philippine arts, for which he was posthumously awarded National Artist for Film in 2006.

The late screen legend and champion of the poor made headlines in October following a church group’s opposition of a Senate bill seeking to rename an avenue in Quezon City as FPJ Avenue. The bill aims to honor Poe whose production outfit is located along San Francisco Del Monte Avenue. The group said that while it acknowledges Poe’s achievements, his legacy should not be “at the expense of the area’s historical, cultural, religious and social significance.”

Marcelito Pomoy

The Filipino singer, known for his ability to sing in both tenor and soprano, captured the hearts of Americans earlier this year. Banking on his Pilipinas Got Talent success, Marcelito joined America’s Got Talent: The Champions in January and placed fourth in the overall competition.

Following his loss in the American talent show, rumors swirled on social media that the singer was “found dead” in his hotel room. In social media post, Marcelito expressed his dismay over the fake news, adding that he is “alive and kicking.”

Upon returning to his home in Quezon, Marcelito and his wife have busied themselves by helping their fellow residents affected by the pandemic. In May, he went viral and wowed netizens with a single act of generosity when he rebuilt the home of an elderly woman living alone in a rundown shack.

In December, Marcelito topped the list for trending YouTube videos of the year in the Philippines with his performance of “The Prayer” which garnered more than 45 million views.

Manny Pacquiao

The People’s Champ, considered one of the world’s greatest boxers of all time, took a year off the ring and focused on his political career this 2020. Earlier this month, the boxer turned politician was elected as PDP-Laban’s president. While some speculate that the senator’s take-over of his party’s leadership is a prelude to his presidential bid in 2022, the party claimed that it is too early to talk about the upcoming elections. Reports, however, recalled that in 2015, Pacquiao’s former promoter Bob Arum said that the boxer had plans to run for president “in 2022 or maybe later.”

Despite the hiatus, Pacquiao continues to be linked in big name fights. Former two-weight UFC champion Conor McGregor revealed in a tweet in September that he has a fight lined up with Pacquiao in 2021. There are also speculations that Pacquiao may also face Terrence Crawford or Errol Spence Jr., both champions in his weight class.

Lee Min Ho

The Korean stud who first stole Filipinos’ hearts as Gu Jun-pyo in the K-drama “Boys Over Flowers” was named Lazada’s first Regional Ambassador in October.

Since the show finale, Min Ho has stayed in the limelight and starred in several international hits such as “Legend of the Blue Sea,” “The Heirs” and “City Hunters.”

He went on an acting hiatus in 2017 to serve in the military. His comeback series “The King: Eternal Monarch”, which aired in April this year, was tagged by Netflix Philippines as the most watched K-drama in the country. The romantic fantasy revolves around the relationship of people from two parallel worlds. Min Ho’s character seeks to seal the gateway between dimensions, while his leading lady’s character, is a police inspector who simply wants to protect other people’s lives.

With Min Ho’s career back on track, his most anticipated upcoming project is “Pachinko,” a historical epic packed with romance, action and drama set to air on Apple TV+ in 2021.

Robin Padilla

The Philippine cinema’s bad boy has been a vocal supporter of President Rodrigo Duterte from the get-go. In 2016, he actively campaigned for Duterte. In the same year, Padilla, who was convicted with illegal possession of firearms in 1994, was pardoned by the president. On several occasions, he publicly defended the Duterte against critics. Despite his prolonged showbiz career and his previous employment under ABS-CBN, Padilla stayed mum on the renewal of the TV network’s franchise.

It was this pro-administration stance that roused calls for a boycott of “Hayop Ka! The Nimfa Dimaano Story,” the animated film starring Robin Padilla as lead actor. The animated romantic comedy was released on Netflix last September. Nimfa, voiced by Angelica Panganiban, is an anthropomorphic feline who dates a mongrel named Roger, voiced by Padilla.

Kai Sotto

In May, the 18-year old former Ateneo Blue Eaglet became the first international player to sign a contract with the NBA G League.

Kai Sotto spent 2019 at The Skill Factory in Georgia training after playing in various international tournaments, including the 2019 FIBA U19 World Cup.

The budding basketball star was pleasantly surprised with the support he got from 2014 NBA MVP Kevin Durant. The NBA superstar sent a pair of Master & Dynamic headphones, which he partly owns, to Sotto in September. Durant also followed him on Instagram, which shocked Sotto even more.

Park Seo Joon

The international release of “Itaewon Class” in January cemented K-drama heartthrob Park Seo Joon’s place in the list of South Korea’s most bankable stars. Though popularly known for his work in romantic comedies, the popular Netflix series showcased the actor’s incredible acting range. His performance in the webtoon-based drama as an ex-convict-turned-CEO inevitably introduced the star to a wider, more global audience, while giving his long-time fans more reason to celebrate him.

Seo Joon solidified his “hallyu” status with a cameo appearance in the Oscar-winning film “Parasite” which has raked in more than $264 million worldwide.

Ji Chang Wook

The “Backstreet Rookie” lead actor is another “hallyu” star to look out for.

Ji Chang Wook currently stars in the rom-com K-Drama which is based on a popular South Korean webtoon titled “Convenience Store Saet-byul” telling a quirky love story between a kind store owner and his fiery part-time employee.

Despite its controversial start, owing to issues surrounding some suggestive scenes, the feel-good drama has gained momentum and is now enjoying strong ratings because of the lead characters’ great chemistry.

More from Yahoo Philippines

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