While everyone celebrates the monumental success of the biopic, Heneral Luna, history buffs and fan girls are looking forward to the showing of another biopic – this time, about “Boy General” Gregorio del Pilar.
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We, too, are excited for it. That’s why we’ve written some interesting facts about our #Baeyani Gregorio del Pilar.
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Gregorio del Pilar was the nephew of the prolific writer, Marcelo H. del Pilar
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While an article already explained why youth often confuse General Antonio Luna to be his brother Juan, it seems that no one has ever explained the Marcelo-Gregorio confusion (yet).
Aside from their similar surnames, these Philippine heroes are blood-related; Gregorio is the son of Fernando H. del Pilar, the brother of Marcelo. We should remember that the former is the famous Propagandista writer who cloaked himself under the pen name “Plaridel,” while the latter is the young general who rose during the Philippine Revolution.
We know that these confusions cause a lot of disappointments. Yet, we should correct the people who seem to forget our history rather than calling them “stupid”.
Gregorio’s uncle, Toribio, was involved to the 1872 Cavite Mutiny
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Gregorio and Marcelo are not the only del Pilars who left a mark in Philippine History. Toribio, the eldest brother of Marcelo and the uncle of Gregorio, got involved to the Cavite Mutiny of 1872. He was one of the priests who were deported to Guam after the Mutiny. He, along with other patriots, spent six years in the island of Marianas.
The Cavity Mutiny was the uprising of the workers of the Cavite arsenal. This led to the public execution of the three martyr priests – Jose Burgos, Jacinto Zamora, and Mariano Gomez. According to many Historians, the execution of these priests began the fight for Philippine independence. Thus, Gregorio was raised by a family of history makers.
He was an Atenista
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After receiving his early education from the school of Pedro Serrano Laktaw, Gregorio enrolled at the Ateneo Municipal, where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in 1896. Subsequently, the Revolution hindered his plan of getting further education.
Goyong was a runner of the Propaganda Movement Before the Revolution
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According to sources, Goyong stayed with his uncle Deodato Arellano and his aunt Hilaria del Pilar while studying in Ateneo. Arellano was one of the founders of the Katipunan who was also a freemason and a writer of the Diaryong Tagalog.
Even before the break out of the Revolution, Gregorio played a risky role for the country. Stories have it that he worked for his uncle as a messenger of the secret texts of the Propaganda Movement. This undoubtedly adds his charms.
Goyong won his first battle at the age of 21
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After receiving his bachelor’s degree, Goyong presented himself for military service. Young Gregorio first participated in the attack of Kakarong de Sili in Bulacan on December 28, 1896. He nearly got killed “when a bullet grazed him in the forehead” in the American counterattack after three days. His courage earned him the rank of Lieutenant.
Aguinaldo noticed his bravery. A writer even considers him as “Aguinaldo’s protégé and confidential man”. In 1898, Aguinaldo made him the Military Governor of Pangasinan. He was promoted as Brigadier General the same year.
Right after the declaration of Philippine-American War in 1899, Goyong led his cavalry in the first phase of the Battle of Quinga, one of his successful campaigns, which killed high-ranking American, Colonel John M. Stotsenburg.
A century before Paulo Avelino and Alden Richards were born, Goyong was the “Pambansang Bae ng Pilipinas”
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According to Historian Ambeth Ocampo, Gregorio “was handsome and popular with the ladies.” Perhaps, one thing that made him more attractive was the gold braces he had installed in Hong Kong. Ocampo added that after Goyong had his heroic defeat, the Americans despoiled his body and “found love letter in his pocket as well as a perfumed handkerchief from one of his many admirers.”
His first biopic was produced after the Second World War
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In the times were Filipinos were starting to recover from the destructions of World War II, filmmakers started producing a series of historical films to strengthen the Filipino morale. This includes Los Ultimos de Filipinos (1945) and Death March (1946). Moreover, two biopics were produced in 1949 – the Padre Burgos and the Hen. Gregorio del Pilar – Bayani sa Pasong Tirad.
The biopic about General Goyong was released by the LVN Pictures and was shown in theaters from November 24 to December 6, 1949. The role of the young general was played by Jose Padilla, Jr. while his lover was played by Tessie Quintana. Unfortunately, this film is considered as one of the “Forgotten Filipino Historical Films.”
Why don’t we look for a copy of this classic film while waiting for the Articulo Uno’s upcoming biopic about General Goyong? ☺
His second biopic was shown in 1997
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In 1997, Carlo J. Caparas, the National Artist for Visual Arts and Film, directed the biopic, Tirad Pass: The Story of Gen. Gregorio del Pilar. It is another “forgotten” historical film which aimed to remind us the courage and leadership of the youngest Filipino general.”
The plot of the movie focuses on the Battle of Tirad Pass where Goyong met his tragic death. Then matinee Romnick Sarmenta played the major role as Gregorio while Gretchen Padilla played Dolores Josefa, the lover of Gregorio.
Do you want to catch a glimpse of this 90’s film? Click here. You’re welcome.
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Caption: P.S. Although the most awaited biopic is not about our bae Paulo Avelino, we at Top List Network, promotes his upcoming historical films. Yes, Paulo is also going to play the role of Julio Nakpil, Andres Bonifacio’s secretary who became Oriang’s beau after Bonifacio’s death.