Bella Flores

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Remedios Papa Dancel, popularly known as Bella Flores, (27 February 1933- 19 May 2013) was an award-winning Filipino actress known for her portrayal of iconic film villains.

Flores was married to Nestor Reyes, a detective police officer, with whom she had one child, Ruby Rose Arcilla.

Early life and education

Flores was born in Manila. She was a college sophomore at Far Eastern University (FEU) when she appeared in her first film Tatlong Balaraw in 1950.


Flores was introduced to the film industry by Pepe Verdon, the double of actor Leopoldo Salcedo, who took her to Premiere Production for the screen test. She was soon given a four-year contract by Sampaguita Pictures. Her first big role was in the film Roberta in 1951 where she acted as the cruel stepmother of then child actors Tessie Agana and Boy Alano.

As she was described as sexy, with a fair complexion and stern-faced, she was often given Kontrabida (villain) roles. After more than 80 films from 1950 up to the present, Flores was recognized as one of the most popular villains in the Philippine showbiz. The following are some of the memorable movies that she did:

  • Kilabot sa Makiling (1950)
  • Bernardo Carpio (1951)
  • Roberta (1951)
  • Diwani (1953)
  • Biyenang hindi tumatawa (1954)
  • Mariposa (1955)
  • Prinsesa gusgusin (1957)
  • Sabina (1963)
  • Siyam na langit (1963)
  • Trudis liit (1963)
  • Huling baraha (1968)
  • Bakit kita inibig? (1968)
  • Tatak: Double Cross (1968)
  • Kung may gusot, may lusot (1972)
  • Tatlong kasalanan (1976)
  • Dyesebel (1978)
  • Waikiki: Sa lupa ng ating mga pangarap (1980)
  • Bomba Star (1980)
  • Underage (1980)
  • Bulaklak ng City Jail (1984)
  • Tinik sa dibdib (1985)
  • Di bale na lang (1987)
  • Lord, bakit ako pa? (1988)
  • Shake, Rattle & Roll IV (1992)
  • The secrets of Sarah Jane - sana'y mapatawad mo (1994)
  • Pera o bayong (Not da TV)! (2000)
  • Ilusyon (2005)
  • Imahe nasyon (2006)

Awards and recognition

In 1950, she got her first nomination as Filipino Academy of Movie Arts and Sciences Awards (FAMAS) Best Actress in the movie Kilabot sa Makiling. Flores won her first Best Supporting Actress Award (Maria Clara Award) in 1952 for the movie Roberta (1951). In 1968, FAMAS awarded her the Best Supporting Actress Award in the movie Kaibigan kong Sto. Nino which was released in 1967. In 1984, she was part of the cast of an American action movie Missing in Action.

Flores was also awarded as the Best Supporting Actress by the Olongapo Film Festival for her performance in Dugo ng Bayan in 1973.

In 1989, Flores was given the Lifetime Achievement Award by the Film Academy of the Philippines (FAP).

She worked in a film with Chuck Norris, a famous American action star, wherein she played the role of Madame Pearl. She was also part of another American movie Soldier Boyz (1996) wherein she played as the fat woman.


Flores' condition had worsened after her hip surgery in 2012 following a fall. She also suffered from diabetes, heart disease and early stages of Alzheimer's disease.

She was rushed to the Quezon City General Hospital by her daughter Ruby Arcilla and singer Imelda Papin. Papin recalled that Flores had difficulty in breathing when she was brought to the hospital. Doctors tried to revive her several times as her blood pressure crashed until she eventually succumbed. She was pronounced dead at 1:27 am of 19 May 2013 at age 84.

Her remains lie at the Loyola Memorial Chapels and Crematorium in Quezon City where a public viewing took place.

One of Flores' last films was Pablo Villanueva's Ilusyon where she played the role of Manang Karing, a landlady.


"Bella Flores." Imdb. (accessed on July 23, 2007).



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