|Born||December 3, 1989 (age 24)
Balicasag Island, Bohol, Philippines
|Occupation||Actress and Student|
|Parents||Verano and Helen Lusterio|
|Awards||Best Child Actress and Best Supporting Actress|
Rebeca Lusterio or Bikay for short, made an abrupt transition to show business when was cast in the movie Muro-Ami in 1999. She was chosen out of the many kids who auditioned for the role of Kalbo. Bikay who grew up in the Balicasag Island, the movie Muro Ami depicted her prowess in swimming. The film is depicts one of the worst forms of child labor in the illegal fishing system. Fredo is the ruthless captain of 150 Muro Ami divers. The illegal fishing is done by pounding and crushing corals underwater to scare the fishes and luring them towards the nets. With a high quota to meet, Fredo forces the divers mostly children, to accomplish at least eight dives a day to meet their goal before the millennium. Tired and harassed after the burdening task being given to them, the children have to make do in subhuman conditions in the Aurora, the Muro Ami boat. They sleep in rat-infested bunks and are fed only twice a day. Life above the boat is much worse than the suffering the children encounter beneath the sea. For every dive, a child's life is perilously in danger. For her role, she was hailed as the Philippines best child actress by the FAMAS and STARS Awards.
Five years after, she was wowed viewers with her role in the Visayan movie Panaghoy sa Suba (The Call of the River), a romantic film shot in Bohol with Visayan dialogues, Cebuano to be exact, with English subtitles during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines during World War II.
In Panaghoy, Bikay is one of the most moving characters - as the brave and obedient younger sister of Duroy (Cesar Montano) who closes the film with poetry. For an actor who never had any formal acting workshop, Bikay delivered a powerful performance, not allowing herself to be overshadowed in any scene by the more experienced ones like Daria Ramirez and Montano, who also directed the film. Even just her cry of “Nanay!” (mother) haunted everyone in the audience.
According to Ricky Lo, in his Funfare column on January 5, 2005, he reported why Bikay didn’t make it to get her award. “ It would have been her moment of glory, a victory over heavyweight opponents, but where oh where was Rebecca Lusterio during the 2004 Metro Filmfest’s Gabi ng Parangal last Dec. 29 at the Aliw Theater where she was named Best Supporting Actress for her performance in Cesar Montano’s Panaghoy sa Suba? She was in Bohol, selling seashells in her native Balicasag Island in Panglao. According to Funfare contributor and journalist Leo Udtohan, Rebecca, whom he fondly calls Bikay, would have loved to be at the awards night but, sob and sigh, she didn’t have the money to buy a ticket (plane or boat fare) to Manila and a nice enough dress to wear in an affair where everybody displays his or her sartorial best – or worst.”
Bikay is the fourth among five children of a poor couple. Her father, Verano, is a fisherman; while her mother, Helen, makes souvenir items out of seashells which she and Rebecca sell at the Alona Beach (Panglao). Bikay and her family temporarily stayed in a P600 rented house in Tawala, also in Panglao. They left Balicasag for greener pastures.
Because Bikay is low-key and self-effacing, hardly anybody knows that she’s an award-winning In 2004, the Colegio de San Juan de Letran through the Rev. Fr. Edwin A. Lao, O.P., rector and president, offered a full-scholarship to Bikay after she was appeared in Ricky Lo’s column. She is now a 4th year Masscom student. Bikay commutes from Bacoor (Cavite) to the Letran campus in Intramuros during school days.
In 2005, under CM Productions again (Cesar Montano with wife actress Sunshine Cruz) was part of the movie Ligalig  as a film entry in the MMFF 2006. Like perhaps a lucky charm, Rebecca is once again in the festival-Cesar Montano film.
Bikay finally got her degree in AB Communication Arts last April 27, 2010 at SMX Mall of Asia as a scholar of Colegio de San Juan de Letran Manila.
Awards and achievements
Lusterio won five awards and one nominations.
- 2000 Won FAMAS Award Best Child Actress for: Muro-ami (1999).
- 2005 Gawad Urian Awards Nominated Gawad Urian Award Best Supporting Actress (Pinakamahusay na Pangalawang Aktres) for Panaghoy sa suba (The Call of the River) (2004).
- 2004 Metro Manila Film Festival Won Festival Prize Best Supporting Actress
for Panaghoy sa suba (The Call of the River) (2004).
- 1999 Metro Manila Film Festival Best Child Performer for Muro-ami (1999).
- 2000 Star Awards for Movies Star Award Child Performer of the Year for Muro-ami (1999).
- 2000 Star Awards for Movies New Movie Actress of the Year for Muro-ami (1999).
• Discovered by Marilou Diaz-Abaya.
• Cesar Montano always casts her in films he produced. Cesar was impressed with Rebecca when they did Muro-ami (1999).
• She appeared in a musical video prepared by the Sangguniang Kabataan (SK) Federation headed by SK National President Jane Censoria Cajes. The musical video pays tribute to the young Boholano achievers in the Bohol Youth Week on May 26, 2008.
|2004||Panaghoy sa Suba||Bikay|