Cherie Gil

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Evangeline Rose Gil Eigenmann (21 June 1963 – 5 August 2022), known by her professional name Cherie Gil, was a Filipino actress. She rose to prominence for her compelling antagonistic roles, earning her the moniker "la primera contravida" (the prime villain).[1][2][3][4]

In her five-decade acting career, Gil won a number of local and international awards, including best lead actress in a foreign language film at the 2015 Madrid International Film Festival for her work in Mana, best actress at the 2015 ASEAN Film Awards for her acting in Sonata, best supporting actress from the Metro Manila Film Festival (MMFF) for her performances in God... Save Me! (1985), Imortal (1989), and Sugatang Puso (2000), and best supporting actress at the 2019 Gawad Urian Awards for her role in CItizen Jake.[5][6][7] Gil also received the Ani ng Dangal honor from the National Commission for Culture and the Arts (NCCA) in 2016.[8]

Her character Lavinia Arguelles's line "You're nothing but a second-rate, trying hard copycat!" spoken to Sharon Cuneta's Dorina Pineda in the film Bituing Walang Ningning (1985) has been immortalized in Filipino pop culture.[9]

Early life

Cherie Gil was born on 21 June 1963[10]as Evangeline Rose Gil Eigenmann to actors Eddie Mesa and Rosemarie Gil.[11] Her siblings Michael de Mesa (given name: Michael Edward Gil Eigenmann) and Mark Gil (given name: Raphael John Gil Eigenmann) were actors too.[12] Gil began acting at the age of 9.


After entering the showbiz industry at an early age, Gil landed her first leading role in 1978's Bubot na Bayabas opposite Ronald Bregendahl. This was followed by Problem Child (1979), City After Dark, Salawahan (1980), and Ito Ba Ang Ating Mga Anak (1982). In 1982, Gil starred in the widely acclaimed World War II drama Oro, Plata, Mata.

While working in film, Gil also appeared on television shows, including as a co-host to German Moreno in Germspesyal from 1979 to 1981. She was also a mainstay on the gag show Champoy from 1981 to 1986.

Gil's formidableness as an antagonist is exemplified in her performance as Lavinia Arguelles in 1985's Bituing Walang Ningning opposite lead star Sharon Cuneta. It is in the film that she utters the iconic line "You're nothing but a second rate, trying hard copycat!"

She continued to work in television from 2000 to 2010 and starred in series and other programs on ABS-CBN and GMA. She also acted in a number of stage plays, including the 2006 local production of Doubt: A Parable. She last worked in theater in 2019, in the play Angels in America: Millennium Approaches.

Gil's last ever acting role was in the GMA drama series Legal Wives. She announced her premature departure from the show in May 2021.[13]

Personal life

Gil had a son, named Jay Eigenmann, with actor Leo Martinez.[14] In 1994, she married Israeli violinist Rony Rogoff. They had a daughter and a son, Bianca and Rafael Rogoff. Gil and Rogoff separated in 2008. Rogoff then moved to Israel with their children. All of Gil's children, including Jay Eigenmann, would eventually live in the United States.

In 2021, after leaving the show Legal Wives, Gil relocated to the United States to be with her children. She then reportedly reconciled with Rogoff after the couple decided to be "companions" to each other.[15]


Gil died on 5 August 2022 at 4:48 a.m. EDT (4:48 p.m. PHT) in New York after battling endometrial cancer.[16] She had been receiving treatment at the Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York.[17][18] Gil's cancer was diagnosed in October 2021, a few months after moving to the United States. She kept the diagnosis private.[19][19]



Year Title Role Notes Source
1980–1985 Champoy Herself Supporting cast
1987 Regal Shocker Tessie Episode: "Halimaw ng Dilim"
Credited as "Cherrie Gil"
1992 Maalaala Mo Kaya Sonia Episode: "Walis Tambo"
Credited as "Cherie Gil"
1994 Bisperas ng Kasaysayan
2000—2001 May Bukas Pa Divina Miguel
2000 Maalaala Mo Kaya Episode: "Postcard"
2001—2003 Sa Puso Ko Iingatan Ka Star / Nena
2002 Bituin Carmela Gaston
2004 Marina Victoria Raymundo
2006 Bahay Mo Ba 'To? Tet Ano
2006 Now and Forever: Dangal Chandra [20]
2006 Gulong ng Palad Philomena "Menang" Medel [21]
2007 Kemis: Ke Misis Umaasa Clarisse
2007 Sineserye Presents: May Minamahal Becky Tagle
2007—2008 Mars Ravelo's Lastikman Ayessa White / Frosta
2008 Carlo J. Caparas' Pieta Amanda Tupaz [22]
2009 Maalaala Mo Kaya Romana Episode: "Wheelchair"
2009—2010 Katorse Doña Margaret Arcanghel [23]
2010 Rubi Sylvana Velasco-dela Fuente [24]
2010 Grazilda Veronne [25]
2011 Magic Palayok Yvonne Ledesma
2011 Time of My Life Martha Llorico
2012 Legacy Eva Altamirano-Alcantara
2012 Protégé: The Battle For The Big Artista Break Herself – Judge
2012 Temptation of Wife Stella Salcedo
2013 Muling Buksan Ang Puso Marietta Beltran
2014 Ikaw Lamang Señora Miranda Salazar-Hidalgo Book 1 [26]
2014 Wansapanataym Stella Tuason Episode: "My App #Boyfie"
2014—2015 Strawberry Lane Alexa Bernarte
2015 Maalaala Mo Kaya Maritess Episode: "Takure"
2015 The Half Sisters Magnolia McBride
2015 Magpakailanman Magda Episode: "Ina Ko, Bugaw Ko"
2015 Single / Single Bianca [27]
2016 Dolce Amore Luciana Marchesa [28]
2016—2017 Alyas Robin Hood Margarita "Maggie" Balbuena
2017 Tadhana Madam Bilal
2017 Single/ Single Tita Bianca
2017—2018 Ika-6 na Utos Adella Acuzar-Ferrer
2018 Sirkus La Ora / Laura
2018 Barangay 143 Sophia Dubbed voice
2018 Dear Uge Angelita Buensalida Episode: "Terror Boss"
2018—2019 Onanay Helena Montenegro
2019 Starstruck Herself—Judge Cite error: Closing </ref> missing for <ref> tag
1982 Gaano Kadalas Ang Minsan
1983 M.I.B.:Men in Brief Diana
1983 Sana, Bukas Pa ang Kahapon Ellen
1984 Sa Hirap At Ginhawa Karen
1984 Imortal Natasha Quintania
1984 Bagets 2 Marinel Credited as "Cherie Gil"
1985 Kailan Sasabihing Mahal Kita? Arianne Velez
1985 Bituing Walang Ningning Lavinia Arguelles
1985 God, Save Me! Edita
1986 Palimos ng Pag-ibig Verna Castillo
1986 Sana'y Wala Nang Wakas Monique Versoza
1987 Saan Nagtatago ang Pag-ibig? Zeny
1987 Jack & Jill Susan
1988 Hamunin ang Bukas... [29]
1989 Rosenda Ria
1989 Kahit Wala Ka Na Debbie
1989 Ang Bukas Ay Akin Miriam
1989 Ang Babaeng Nawawala sa Sarili Oliva
1990 Nagsimula sa Puso Charie Credited as "Cherie Gil"
1990 Trese Angie
1992 Ngayon at Kailanman Donna Benitez
1994 Sana Ay Ikaw Na Nga Shirley Evangelista
1994 Wating Anya
1994 Mars Ravelo's Darna: Ang Pagbabalik Valentina
2000 Ika-13 Kapitulo Marge [30]
2000 Sugatang Puso Miriam
2003 My First Romance Jackie's mother
2004 Lastikman: Unang Banat Editha / Lastika
2006 Donsol Mars
2009 Agaton & Mindy Tanya [31]
2010 Working Girls Amanda Dela Vega
2010 Father Jejemon Violeta
2012 Sosy Problems Martina Bertrand
2013 A Moment in Time Karen Linden
2013 Ang Huling Henya Chief Gabriel Uncredited
2013 Sonata Regina Cadena Also producer (as My Own Mann)
2013 Ekstra Herself / Doña Beatriz
2015 Mana Sandra
2015 Baka Siguro Yata Remy
2015 Para sa Hopeless Romantic Miss Katigbak
2016 A Lullaby to the Sorrowful Mystery Babae / Tikbalang [32]
2018 Kasal Helen
2019 Just a Stranger
2019 Unforgettable
2019 Tia Madre Last Movie Appearance


Year Title Role Notes Source
2006 Doubt: A Parable Sister Aloysius Atlantis Theatricals; Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati City
2006 The Sound of Music Baroness Elsa Schraeder Repertory Philippines; Onstage Theater, Greenbelt 1, Makati City
2008 Master Class Maria Callas Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati City
2012 Nine Liliane La Fleur Atlantis Theatricals; Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati City
2014 Full Gallop Diana Vreeland Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati City
2015 Arbol de Fuego Enriquetta Jardeleza Philippine Educational Theater Association (PETA); PETA Theater Center, Quezon City; Filipino-language adaptation of Anton Chekhov's "The Cherry Orchard" by Rody Vera
2017 Vanya and Sonia and Masha and Spike Masha Repertory Philippines; Onstage Theater, Greenbelt 1, Makati City
2019 Angels in America: Millennium Approaches Hannah Pitt / Ethel Rosenberg / Rabbi Isidor Chemelwitz / Dr. Henry Atlantis Theatrical Entertainment Group; Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC Plaza, Makati City; Last Stage Appearance

Awards and nominations

Year Work Award Category Result Source
1985 God... Save Me! Metro Manila Film Festival Best Supporting Actress Won
1989 Imortal Won
2000 Sugatang Puso Won
2006 Gulong ng Palad PMPC Star Awards for Television Best Drama Actress Won
2014 Sonata 11th Golden Screen Awards Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role (Drama) Won
2014 A Moment in Time FAMAS Awards Best Supporting Actress Won
2014 Muling Buksan Ang Puso PMPC Star Awards for Television Best Drama Supporting Actress Won [33]
2015 Mana 31st PMPC Star Awards Movie Actress of the Year Won
2015 Mana Madrid International Film Festival Best Actress Won [34]
2019 Citizen Jake PMPC Star Awards Movie Supporting Actress of the Year Won [35]



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  2. La Primera Contravida (January 8, 2017).
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  4. Smith, Chuck. Who's afraid of Cherie Gil?.
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  6. Rappler. Retrieved 8 August 2022.
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  8. Times, The Manila (February 20, 2016). Ani ng Dangal awardees announced (en).
  9. Sharon Cuneta, Cherie Gil reenact iconic movie scene — with a twist (en) (July 14, 2019).
  10. "Michael de Mesa, iyak nang iyak sa Ang Probinsyano set nang malamang pumanaw si Cherie Gil",, Philippine Entertainment Portal, 6 August 2022. (in fil) 
  11. "Cherie Gil: Trivia about Philippines' beloved 'La Primera Contravida'", The Philippine Star, 6 August 2022. 
  12. "Tributes pour for 'amour' Cherie Gil", The Philippine Star, 6 August 2022. 
  13. "‘I have no regrets’: Cherie Gil announces departure from a teleserye", Rappler, 10 May 2021. 
  14. PEP. Retrieved 8 August 2022.
  15. "Cherie Gil at ex-husband nagkabalikan matapos ang untimely exit ng aktres sa Legal Wives?",, Philippine Entertainment Portal, Inc., 21 July 2021. (in en) 
  16. "Award-winning actress and primera contravida Cherie Gil dies at 59",, Philippine Entertainment Portal, 6 August 2022. (in fil) 
  17. Cherie Gil dies at 59 (en-US) (August 5, 2022).
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  19. 19.0 19.1 Retrieved 8 August 2022.
  20. Kalaw, Ana G. (October 11, 2006). "Cherie Gil: 43 and Loving It". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  21. Kalaw, Ana G. (October 11, 2006). "Cherie Gil: 43 and Loving It". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  22. Sibonga, Glen P.. "Cherie Gil Handling her Separation from Husband Roni Rogoff with Grace",, Philippine Entertainment Portal, 24 October 2008. 
  23. Quintos, Napoleon (February 9, 2010). "Cherie Gil Keeps a Good Friendship with her Ex-husband Roni Rogoff". ABS-CBN Corporation. Archived from the original on 19 September 2016.
  24. Quintos, Napoleon (February 9, 2010). "Cherie Gil Keeps a Good Friendship with her Ex-husband Roni Rogoff". ABS-CBN Corporation. Archived from the original on 19 September 2016.
  25. "Cherie Gil: Demonic on Cam, Iconic off Cam", Manila Bulletin, September 10, 2010. 
  26. "Meet the powerhouse cast of Ikaw Lamang". ABS-CBN News. Retrieved 11 February 2014.
  27. "Kilig in the air with Premiere of Single/Single Season 2". The Philippine Star. Retrieved 21 May 2016.
  28. "'Dolce Amore': Luciana's Dark Past Brings Light on Tenten's Origin". ABS-CBN News. Retrieved 12 September 2016.
  29. Diaz, Lav. "Medyo naiba", Manila Standard, Manila Standard News, November 2, 1988, p. 26. (in Filipino) 
  30. Umerez, Remy M. (December 23, 2000). "Winninng Still Matters to the Winningest Actor". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 18 October 2016
  31. Salterio, Leah. "Not Pining for an Award". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved 18 October 2016
  32. "Movie Review: 'Hele Sa Hiwagang Hapis': A Passionate Film about the Fate of the Philippines". GMA News. Retrieved 22 September 2016.
  33. "28th Star Awards for Television Nominees Revealed". Philippine Entertainment Portal. Retrieved 6 November 2014.
  34. "Cherie Gil Signs Up for 'A Thousand Tears'". Manila Bulletin. Retrieved 12 July 2018
  35. Garcia, Cara Emeline. "Sanya Lopez and Cherie Gil win big at the 35th PMPC Star Awards for Movies". GMA News. Retrieved 8 June 2019.