The challenge was to show Anne Curtis-Smith as she had never been seen before—and it was a challenge, because you’d think that you’ve seen every conceivable side of her by now: Anne hosting noontime shows, Anne starring in movies, Anne belting out a song in front of a live audience, and certainly, Anne posing for magazines. She is, after all, likely the biggest of today’s local A-list celebrities, if not only the most-followed on Instagram. You know her. Your parents know her. Every person within a kilometer of where you are right now knows her. Because after twenty consistently successful years in show-business, her name and her likeness have grown to such that you almost can’t go a day in Metro Manila without encountering her in some way.
But it is when you actually meet Anne Curtis-Smith that you are reminded that you don’t really know her—that your idea of her is either incorrect or insufficient. Of course it is. She is taller than you might expect, for instance; and her lips, while full and shapely, are not quite as prominent as her eyes, which will light up several times throughout a conversation, eclipsing even her most famously fetishized features.
Because of the ease with which Anne poses, smiles, and laughs in front of the camera, you’d think that these are rehearsed aspects of her beauty, perfected over years of being in the business. But they are truer than you would expect, because the real Anne Curtis-Smith will flash an even brighter beam of a smile, and will let out an even heartier laugh than you’ve seen in pictures or on TV, without the cues and prompts and flashing lights.
The real Anne Curtis-Smith will tell you that she appreciates the little things; that despite being accustomed to the grandiose, her love is earned by small gestures. And if you ask her, she will think hard about the craziest thing she’s done for love, but will not tell you what that is. She will give you what she calls a safer answer: waiting a month after her engagement to announce it publicly, in deference to her fiance's privacy. But that's not exactly crazy inasmuch as it is uncharacteristic of her. You will know then for certain that she’s done something crazier, but also that because she is Anne Curtis-Smith, you will never know more.
This story originally appeared in the August 2017 issue of Esquire Philippines.
Minor edits have been made by the EsquireMag.ph team.