Friday, March 18, 2016

51. Is That Who I Think He Is? REZ CORTEZ for WYSSER BRIEF

THE AD THAT HAS COME BACK TO HAUNT YOU.  Rez Cortez was already in his
30s and a father when he became the signature model of Wysser Brief, a short-lived
male underwear brand.

Rez Cortez (b. 4 Jan. 1956) was an electronics and engineering student when showbiz beckoned. At the University of the East, this Bicolano from Buhi, Camarines Sur,  had been a popular campus figure, often appearing in stage plays that required him to show of his stocky physique and dancing prowess. His terpsichorean talents took him to the Cultural Center of the Philippines where he became a resident dancer. Egged on by showbiz friends, Cortez appeared in his first movie--"Daigdig ng Sindak at Lagim" (1974), followed by "Kung Bakit may Bilanggo sa mga Anak ni Eba?". In both movies, he died.

Apparently, many found his curly Afro hairdo and dancer's body very appealing. His stock improved when he was cast in Brocka's movie "Insiang", which swung his career in the black. Soon, Cortez was doing "Mga Hayop sa Damo", "Si Amihan at Hagibis" (1977) "Mga Tinik ng Babae (1978"), alongside sultry sirens Tricia Gomez, Liz Alidnogan and Alma Moreno. He did not exactly become a romantic lead, but left his mark as a sought-after character actor.

Atlas Sports Weekly Magazine, 1987.

Oh yes, while the going got hot, Cortez appeared on TV to show off his dancing skills, and appeared in at least one print ad, where he bared his summer bod as a Wysser Brief model--long before Bench made modelling underwear fashionable. Nothing much is known about the manufacturer--but it must have made a dent in the market for having been able to afford this full color print ad in 1987, published on a popular sports magazine. Was it indeed, a "Wysser Choice" for Cortez--already a mature man in his 30s, a husband and a father--to appear in this kitschy ad?  Well,  as they say--if you have it, flaunt it! So, dear readers, what do you think?

REZ CORTEZ TODAY, Source: facebook account photo

Of late, Cortez has not only forayed into directing,but also into politics--running unsuccessfully for a congressional seat in his own province of Camarines Sur and now a Grace Poe for President stalwart. His bikini brief-wearing days may be over, but these days, Cortez continues to be a visible sight on both the big screen ("Bwakaw", "Hari ng Tondo" and TV ("Temptation of Wife", "Villa Quintana", "That's My Amboy"),


  1. I'm not usually interested in bios, no matter how short, of show biz people, but in this case I read the article as I met him when he was still a member of the UE Dance Troupe with a very good friend of mine. Later when he was already in the movie industry, I met him again through my sister Raquel. No matter how good or bad he was in his heyday, I don't think you should refer to him as the "resident cancer" when he was at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

  2. Sobrang simple lang ni Sir Rez Cortez when I met him as part of our Indie Film "ANG MISYON" (which comes out real, real, soon, yes PROMOTE ITO!), ang bait lang ni Sir Rez Cortez and grabe such an Icon of Filipino TV, Film and Theater.