Show business has been a gateway to a better life for many… but that is not always the case. Some celebrities have chosen to venture into show business even though they were born to already influential and wealthy families.
In this list, we present you 8 Pinoy celebrities who were born rich:
1. Richard Yap
Richard Yap grew up in Cebu where his family was involved in businesses with interests in rice, corn, shipping, and lumber. He was once estranged from the family when he broke with Chinese tradition and married a Filipina. Richard is successful working as a manager in an office furniture company—and a few modeling gigs on the side—before showbiz.
In 2011, Yap launched his career in ABS-CBN via “My Binondo Girl” where he played Kim Chiu’s father, Chen Sy. Little did he know that through this role he would gain wide recognition from fans of the series.
In 2012, Yap made several appearances in the network. He played a recurring character in “Walang Hanggan” as Henry de Dios. From 2012-2014, he played the lead role in the morning teleserye “Be Careful With My Heart” as Richard “Sir Chief” Lim alongside Jodi Sta. Maria as Maya Dela Rosa Lim.
He now also owns a chain of restaurants.
2. Denise Laurel
Denise is from the Laurel clan, a politically loaded clan. Her late grandfather Salvador Laurel was the Vice President during Corazon Aquino’s presidency and her late great grandfather Jose Laurel was the third president of the Philippines. Her uncle Cocoy was a matinee idol in his time, even being paired with Nora Aunor in a movie. Fashion designer Rajo Laurel is also a cousin of hers.
Laurel was discovered by Star Magic’s big boss Mr. M (Johnny Manahan) in a play of Repertory Philippines. Luckily, she was given a break to be part of “Ang TV 2”, then she played as Ina Raymundo’s daughter in “Pangako Sa‘Yo”.
She then made a name in Singapore when she was fortunate to be a part of “MTV Asia’s Rouge”, which was shown all over Asia. Among the many who auditioned, she stood out and got the role of a smart lead vocalist named Pat. At the age of 16, her experience in working with other nationalities has taught her things that helped her improve her craft. After a season in Rouge, Denise decided to concentrate on her local showbiz career.
In her return to the Philippines, she was part of the teen-oriented show “Click”, TAPE Inc.’s “Walang Hanggan” and “Leya”, and two telefantasyas “Mulawin” and “Encantadia”.
When she went back to ABS-CBN. Laurel was starred on “Abt Ur Luv”, and in the fifth season of “Komiks”, where she plays an Engkantao. In 2008, ABS-CBN started the “Precious Hearts Romances Presents” series in which Laurel is prominently featured. Thus far, she has starred in four of the series’ adaptation: “Bud Brothers”, “You’re Mine, Only Mine”, “Midnight Phantom” and “Kristine”. She started getting recognition when she did the series, most notably in Midnight Phantom and Kristine opposite her good friend Rafael Rosell. Her team-up with Rosell has been a hit with the viewers, thus they were teamed up again in “Dahil Sa Pag-ibig”. After Dahil Sa Pag-ibig, Laurel starred on her fifth PHR series entitled “Pintada”, where she played a teacher with a mysterious past.
In 2013, Laurel played an antagonist role in the last PHR series “Paraiso”, and later became part of the pre-primetime family drama series “Annaliza” that was aired until March 2014 as Isabel. She also starred in the afternoon melodrama series “Nasaan Ka Nang Kailangan Kita” in 2015.
3. Matteo Guidicelli
Gianmatteo Vittorio Fernan Guidicelli was born in Cebu City. He is one of the three children of Gianluca Guidicelli, who was Italian, and Glenna Fernan, a Filipino. His grandfather is the late Senator and Chief Justice Marcelo Fernan.
His Italian dad is in the manufacturing business, and a very successful one at that since Matteo was able to attend one of the most pricey schools in Manila. Matteo was also able to pursue a career in racing which can be quite expensive.
Guidicelli was initially known from his racing career, having started at an early age of 11. He has won numerous awards including being a three-time winner of the Karter of the Year award.
He took an interest in acting upon taking workshops at the New York Academy. As soon as he came back to the Philippines, he went to take up theatre courses in Brent International School and began to participate in plays. He also attended Columbia College in Chicago for two years to pursue a B.A. in performing arts in the field of musical theater.
His acting career started when he became a part of the sitcom “Go Kada Go”. He appeared in “Kung Fu Kids”. The next year, he was cast in the soap opera “Ligaw na Bulaklak”.
Guidicelli is currently a member of ABS-CBN’s Star Magic. In 2010, he got his biggest role in the now defunct ABS-CBN primetime fantasy television series “Agua Bendita”.
Guidicelli also pursued a career in singing. Star Records released Guidicelli’s first single “Someone Like You” as an internet download.
In 2011, he became one of the hosts of the noontime show “Happy Yipee Yehey!”, which was cancelled a year later. Guidicelli also played in “Vito in Catch Me, I’m in Love”. He played Trevor Wu, one of Kim Chiu’s leading men in “My Binondo Girl”. In 2012, he starred in his first movie role in “My Cactus Heart”.
4. Heart Evangelista
Love Marie Payawal Ongpauco-Escudero belongs to the Ongpauco clan who owns and runs the successful restaurant chain Barrio Fiesta. Heart reportedly even owns one branch of Barrio Fiesta herself.
Evangelista was first discovered by a commercial agent while at a mall with her sister. She signed up with the Star Magic agency, formerly known as Talent Center, and was part of Star Circle Batch 9. Heart has a foundation called Heart Can, a foundation dedicated to helping children with respiratory diseases, and she is also a spokesperson for PAWS or (Philippine Animal Welfare Society).