Bella Flores

Remedios Papa Dancel (February 27, 1929 – May 19, 2013),[1][2] commonly known as Bella Flores, was a Filipina actress. She was best known for her "iconic" portrayals of film villains.[3] She is popularly referred as the original “Queen of Kontrabidas” for being an enduring icon of Philippine culture and setting the standard on which kontrabidas will always be measured.[4]

Bella Flores
Bella Flores resized.jpg
Remedios Papa Dancel

February 27, 1929
DiedMay 19, 2013 (aged 84)
Resting placeOur Lady of Eternal Peace Memorial Park, San Jose del Monte, Bulacan
Years active1950–2013
ChildrenRuby Dancel-Arcilla
Parent(s)Matias Dancel (father)
Emilia Papa (mother)
RelativesJesse Arcilla (son-in-law)
Jessica Dancel-Arcilla (granddaughter)
AwardsFAMAS Best Supporting Actress
1967 Ang Kaibigan Kong Santo Niño

Life and careerEdit

Flores was born Remedios Papa Dancel in Manila to Matias Dancel, a slipper maker, and Emilia Papa. She was a college sophomore at the Far Eastern University when she appeared in her first film, Tatlong Balaraw (1950), at age 21.

Flores was signed by Sampaguita Pictures. She was cast in Roberta as the cruel stepmother of Tessie Agana's titular character, despite being 22 years old. The film was a box-office success, credited with saving Sampaguita Pictures from bankruptcy after a fire had destroyed its studio.[1] The film's success also elevated Flores into the upper tier of stars, and typecast her in villainous roles. The film critic Nestor Torre remarked that Flores had "been making life miserable for many generations of hapless stars—all the way back to little Tessie Agana and Boy Alano in Roberta in the early 1950s, to her fresh batch of victims in the New Millennium... doing it without skipping a beat—and without aging (much) to boot."[3] She received the 1967 FAMAS Best Supporting Actress award for her role in Ang Kaibigan Kong Santo Niño and bella mora.[1]



Year Title Role(s) Film Company
2012 My Kontrabida Girl Herself
2011 Way Back Home Lola Nita
2005 D' Anothers Precious
Star Cinema
2000 'Di Ko Kayang Tanggapin Bella
World Arts Cinema
1998 Ginto't Pilak Landlady
Tataynic Colonel's wife
RVQ Productions
1997 Nakawin Mo ang Aking Puso Mameng
MAQ Productions
1996 Ikaw ang Mahal Ko Felipa
FPJ Productions
Ang Misis Kong Hoodlum Widow #1
Neo Films
1994 The Secrets of Sarah Jane: Sana'y Mapatawad Mo! Recruiter
1993 Dugo ng Panday Bantay
Regal Films
1992 Shake, Rattle & Roll IV Mama Monang
Regal Films
1990 May Isang Tsuper ng Taxi Aling Maring
FPJ Productions
Patigasan ang Labanan Bella
Triple R Films
Paikot-ikot Dorothy
OctoArts Films
Viva Films
Petrang Kabayo 2: Anong Ganda Mo? Mukha Kang Kabayo! Monina
Viva Films
1989 Sgt. Niñonuevo: The Fastest Gun Alive of WPD Nana Toyang
Kelly Ellis Films International
Pulis, Pulis sa Ilalim ng Tulay Belle
Regal Films
1988 Buy One, Take One Zarah
Viva Films
Nakausap Ko ang Birhen Sister Rafaelita
Regal Films
1986 Batang Quiapo Mila
Regal Films
1985 Tinik sa Dibdib Kikay
Sanay Doña Beatriz
MM Film Patterns International
1984 Anak ni Waray vs. Anak ni Biday Carol
Regal Films
Missing in Action Madame Pearl
1983 Tulume Alyas Zorro Doña Sabel
Gold Sun Productions
To Mama with Love Store owner
Regal Films
1982 Diary of Cristina Gaston Bella
Regal Films
1980 Waikiki: Sa Lupa ng Ating Mga Pangarap Bella
Regal Films
Under-Age Berta
Regal Films
Kastilyong Buhangin Viring
Lotus Films
1978 Atsay Mrs. Aguila
Ian Film Productions
Mahal Mo, Mahal Ko Bella
1953 Diwani Ramona
Sampaguita Pictures
1951 Roberta Bar girl


Year Title Role(s) Network
2010 Sine Novela: Mars Ravelo's Trudis Liit Doña Hershey Ferrer GMA Network
2005-2006 Mga Anghel na Walang Langit Gaudencia "Gude" Redondo-Hawkins ABS-CBN
1999-2001 Marinella Doña Guadalupe "Guada" Villareal
1997 Esperanza Mrs. Sanidad


Flores died on May 19, 2013, in Quezon City General Hospital.[2] Her death was a result of complications from a recent hip surgery.[5]


Bella Flores FoundationEdit

The family of the late veteran actress Bella Flores plans to establish a foundation in her name and to organize a fundraising concert to benefit show business personalities with Alzheimer’s disease.

This was announced Tuesday night by singer Imelda Papin, Flores' niece. Flores was diagnosed with early stages of Alzheimer's and diabetes months before she died on May 19. The concert is tentatively set for July at the Aliw Theater in Pasay, Papin said.

Flores' daughter Ruby Arcilla said during the wake on Tuesday, "If mom's death could pave the way for… these projects, she would be very happy. She always tried to do what she could for her colleagues."

Arcilla said that a woman approached her during the wake to say thanks. "The lady said she showed mom her doctor’s prescription and mom gave what she could afford. I hope other actors would do the same – give from their hearts."

In popular cultureEdit

  • Former teen star Valerie Concepcion plays the role of the late veteran actress Bella Flores in a drama anthology of her feature story of Bella's lifetime in Star Confessions aired on TV5 (now The 5 Network) in 2011.
  • GMA 7 Comedian John Feir plays as "Belly Flori" a parody version of the late veteran actress Bella Flores in a defunct comedy Gag Show "Nuts Entertainment" on GMA 7 in 2003.


  1. ^ a b c Lena Pareja (1994). "Philippine Film". In Nicanor Tiongson (ed.). CCP Encyclopedia of Philippine Art. Vol. VIII (1st ed.). Manila: Cultural Center of the Philippines. p. 250. ISBN 971-8546-31-6.
  2. ^ a b "Actress Bella Flores dies early Sunday at 84". GMA News. Retrieved May 19, 2013.
  3. ^ a b Nestor U. Torre (July 24, 2007). "Guilty pleasures in the biz". Viewfinder. Philippine Daily Inquirer. Archived from the original on October 7, 2008. Retrieved March 5, 2008.
  4. ^ "The iconic Bella Flores: The standard of all kontrabidas". Inquirer Lifestyle. May 19, 2017. Retrieved July 21, 2022.
  5. ^ "Legendary actress Bella Flores passes away at 84". InterAksyon. Archived from the original on June 8, 2013. Retrieved May 19, 2013.

External linksEdit