Rico Yan

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Rico Yan
Born Ricardo Carlos Castro Yan
(1975-03-14)March 14, 1975
Pasig City, Metro Manila, Philippines
Died March 29, 2002(2002-03-29) (aged 27)
Puerto Princesa, Palawan, Philippines
Cause of death Acute Hemorrhagic Pancreatitis
Other names Corics, Ric, Mr. Dimple
Alma mater De La Salle University
Occupation Actor, host, model, businessman, spokesperson
Years active 1995–2002

Rico Yan (/jæn/; born Ricardo Carlos Castro Yan; March 14, 1975 – March 29, 2002) was a Filipino matinee idol, model, film and television actor, host, spokesperson and entrepreneur.

Yan graduated from De La Salle University in 1997 with a degree in Marketing Management. He was the first official youth spokesman for the Department of Education Culture and Sports in 1998, touring the Philippines for free to promote education among youths. As well as establishing Pinoy Yan Movement, a non-profit organization that aims to make young people stay in school and value education. He assisted the Are You a Forest King? Foundation, visiting many schools to promote the importance of tree growth. Yan was also the first Philippine National Red Cross Pledge 25 Spokesperson in 1999.

He was an alumnus of Star Circle Batch 1 now ABS-CBN's Star Magic in November 1995. He started as commercial model under Cosmopolitan Modeling Agency and then became an actor. He was discovered while falling in line in one of the fast food in his school De La Salle University when a talent scout asked him if he wanted to be a commercial model. Though surprised, Yan auditioned and got the part of his first television commercial debut in 1995.

His preppy rich persona was used to effect in subsequent films such as Radio Romance, Ama, Ina, Anak and Madrasta. After several television and movie parts, Yan[1] became a household name when he played Ricky Salveron on Gimik (1996) and Gabriel Maglayon on Mula Sa Puso (1997). He had then spawned highly rated television shows amongst these are Mara Clara (1996), 'Sang Linggo nAPO Sila (1996), Saan Ka Man Naroroon (1999), Magandang Tanghali Bayan (2001) and Whattamen (2001). Yan's remarkable films in Star Cinema[2] add Paano Ang Puso Ko? (1997), Kay Tagal Kang Hinintay (1998), Dahil Mahal Na Mahal Kita (1998), Gimik: The Reunion (1999) and Got 2 Believe (2002). In 2014, Star Cinema[3] ranked him the No. 5 in the List of "The Kings of Star Cinema", twelve years after his death. Yan starred in communically successful television and films with pairings opposite Judy Ann Santos and Claudine Barretto.[4]

Yan was also a successful strategist entrepreneur and owned several businesses. Among these are Orbitz Pearl Shakes, Java Hut, Buddy Burger, Timbuktu Cafe and Tequila Joe Grill and Restaurants.

Yan had a column on Manila Bulletin titled "C'est la Vie".[5][6][7][8][9][10]

Family and early life[edit]

Born in The Medical City, Manila, Philippines. Yan grew up in a family of soldiers and business men. He was the son of Roberto Yan Sr. and Teresita Castro Yan.[11] He was the grandson of Amb. Manuel Yan[12] former Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, Ambassador to Thailand, Indonesia and United Kingdom and Col. Isabelo Ruiz Castro. He has 3 siblings, Geraldine, Tina and Bobby Yan (a television host). Parents are business owners. Owning a security agency for having military background in the family. Yan was an alumnus of Xavier School for his primary education and high school from De La Salle Santiago Zobel School.


Early work: 1995[edit]

Yan was a twenty-year-old senior student from De La Salle University when he got his first shot of popularity. He was one of the promising commercial models of Cosmopolitan Modeling Agency, picked to be the main man in his first television commercial for Master Facial Cleanser. So happens that in screening committee was Mr. Johnny Manahan the Talent Center head. Mr. Manahan asked Yan if he wanted to be in the movies. Yan was reluctant in joining showbiz and was managed by Biboy Arboleda. He was then launched as one of Star Circle Batch 1, composed of eight zealous talents. While Yan was finishing his marketing thesis and trimesters in college, he was also enthralling publics attention through his commercials and most magazine covers. He was even a subject of photo exhibit of an art studio.

Breakthrough: 1996-2000[edit]

The year 1996 marked as a compelling period in Yan's career, he became notable. As a matinee idol he was most charming. In June 1996, Yan played the boy next door character in youth oriented show Gimik [13] named Ricky Salveron directed by Laurenti Dyogi shown on The Filipino Channel TFC. The show was about the lives of a solid bunch of juvenile living in an imaginary village that tackles the experiences and fun of being young, alongside Judy Ann Santos, Jolina Magdangal, Giselle Toengi, Mylene Dizon, Patrick Garcia, Diether Ocampo and Marvin Agustin. The show ran tremendously for three years and was adapted in motion picture release, Gimik: The Reunion in 1999, because of the outpouring on screen chemistry of Yan and Santos on Gimik the team up continued in television drama Mara Clara, he played the young medical intern named Derrick Gonzales. In the same year, Yan became a co host on 'Sang Linggo nAPO Sila, a noon time variety show where he had a portion called Ricollection.

In 1997, Yan played Gabriel Maglayon in successful primetime television drama Mula Sa Puso,[14] an assiduous cab driver who is willing to give up everything for the family and loved one, alongside Claudine Barretto. The series ran for 2 years and was adapted for motion picture release, Mula Sa Puso: The Movie in 1999. Playing Gabriel was one of Yan's unforgettable characters in television.

In Star Drama Presents, Yan did showcased his versatility with depth as an actor by playing off beat characters that was not his typical. He was one of the few Talent Center artist who had numerous appearances in the series, starring in twelve, as featured artist in March 1997 and April 1998.[15]

In 1999, Yan next starred in television drama Saan Ka Man Naroroon opposite Claudine Barretto. He was the agriculturist named Daniel Pineda, an uncomplicated young man but when love transpire, acquired uncertainty with how life's been hard on him. Married a rich old maid to ameliorate living nevertheless union was tormented with lies and deceit.

Yan worked with Director Chito Rono in a mini series titled Detour (2000), making it as his third starring role for Star Drama Presents. He was Carl, an eccentric rich young man who was dying and in journey through life. Carl bumps into all sorts of equally weird characters emerging as a better person at the end of the road. Wearing all the prosthetics during summer of 2000 where the temperature shoots up to 38 degrees Celsius. Yan being the professional and thespian, did his job without a single complaint and gave a profound depiction of the said character.

In movies, Yan moved up to be a leading actor. In 1996 and 1997 he did Paano Ang Puso Ko?, as Jason Delgado, an free spirited, mischievous and playful repatriate. Indisposed but want to live a normal and enjoy life to the fullest. And Joel Bernabe, an sedulous merchandiser in the two part film Flames: the Movie.

In the film Kay Tagal Kang Hinintay, a romantic drama, directed by Rory Quintos[16] in September 1998, Yan played Alex Medina, an aspiring business man whose only dream is to open his own restaurant. Paired opposite Judy Ann Santos whose character needs to choose between family or Alex. The movie was Yan's first full length role as a leading man. Shoot in one of the most romantic place Vigan, Ilocos Sur, Philippines. Truly Yan and Santos had undeniable affinity on screen.

In June 1998, following the success of Mula Sa Puso then came Dahil Mahal Na Mahal Kita. Yan played Miguel Quirino, an student council president, prim and proper, who doesn't smile and has exceptionally high standards, whose character was constantly pissed and flirted by Mela (Claudine Barretto) just to get his attention. The film received a positive response critical and commercial. Yan's unforgettable line was "I don't like the way you dress. I even don't like your make up.... But i love you."[17][18]

Critical success: 2001-2002[edit]

In 2001, Yan maneuvered to a different genre from leading man to be part of a comic triumvirate called Whattamen whom initially started on Gimik. In September 2001, he showed his humorist side by playing the pleasant and witty Castro in an all male comedy sitcom, focusing in three characters on Whattamen[19][20][21] alongside, Dominic Ochoa,[22] Marvin Agustin and Ai Ai De Las Alas.[23] A restaurant possessor, who is the charming guy, is all charms and the sane one in the group. Later on the trio had a spin-off from sitcom to daily afternoon show Magandang Tanghali Bayan, where Yan was launched as one of the new hosts.

In February 2002, Yan filmed his last movie Got 2 Believe, a romantic comedy directed by Olivia Lamasan, which was a huge box office hit and received a gold record award for the official soundtrack before his death, were Yan recorded a duet, alongside Claudine Barretto as one of the theme songs, Got to Believe in Magic. Yan played Lorenz Montinola a commitment-phobic photographer whose only dream is to be an international one. The movie started the romantic comedy flick in the Philippines up to the present. Yan's unforgettable line was "I didn't even believe in forever, but I think I found forever in you."[24]

He had two shows, Magandang Tanghali Bayan[25] and Whattamen[26] airing at the time of his death.[27] Yan proved that whatever genre, romance, drama or comedy, he was the most bankable young male star of his generation.

Products and endorsements[edit]

Before utterly joining entertainment industry in 1995, Yan was a commercial model known for his astringent advertisement with the tag line "Sekreto Ng Mga Gwapo (Secret of the Good Looking)", that became extremely prominent and gave him the title "Crush Ng Bayan". As a product endorser, Yan was ranked #11, "List of 15 Commercial Models Turned Celebrities" in 2010 of SPOT.[28] He was the first image model of several products amongst these are Eskinol: Master Facial Cleanser, Nissin Eggnog Cookies, Greenwich Pizza, Talk 'N Text, Timex and Rain Forest Water. He also became the endorser of various apparels like Molecules Shirts, PROmac athletic shoes, Bleue Tab Jeans and Genre Shirts. Yan was an effective product endorser that most of the companies he worked chose him to be their first image model for their products to be introduced to the public. He too had several sponsors like Salon de Manila, Ritazzo, Studio Ritratto, Cinderella, Sari-Sari Store, Hangten, Diesel Footwear, Adidas Sports, Mendrez Footwear and Planet Fitness. He was filming the Talk 'n Text commercial series when he passed away and was set to make three more commercials before his untimely demise.

Death and memorial[edit]

Picture in his Mausoleum

In March 29, 2002, Yan was found dead inside his hotel room by his friend, actor Dominic Ochoa at the Dos Palmas Resort in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan.[29] Autopsy concluded that Yan died of cardiac arrest caused by acute hemorrhagic pancreatitis[30] while asleep (bangungot).[31] He was 27. According to Ochoa, the group attended a party the night before and went back to their cottage at around 2 AM Friday.[32] The five friends slept together in one big room, but Yan occupied the loft because he was a snorer. At around 6 AM, Yan was heard groaning but his companions dismissed it as mere snoring. When Ochoa tried to wake Yan at past 9AM, he found Yan stiff and lifeless.[33]

His public wake was held in La Salle Greenhills. An estimated 10,000 people attended his last funeral rites in Manila.[34] His funeral was also televised live on ABS-CBN, countless television tributes was given to him. Gary Valenciano moved people to tears to his rendition of The Warrior is a Child, Yan's requested song. He was buried in Manila Memorial Park, Parañaque City. Yan's burial was ranked #6, "List of Most Attended Funerals in Philippine History" of SPOT.[35] A portion of the proceeds from the ticket sales of his last movie, Got 2 Believe,[36] his documentary Forever Young: Remembering Rico,[37] and his other movie Dahil Mahal Na Mahal Kita, contributed to the [38] Rico Yan Youth Foundation.[39][40][41][42]

Personal life[edit]

Fr. Tito Caluag who was Yan's spiritual adviser before his death disclosed that Yan wanted to become president. "Rico wanted to be a leader but never mentioned leadership because he only wanted to serve. He wanted to be like JFK who gave America a sense of pride and class, and inspired his people." said Caluag.[43]


Year Title Role Producer Director
1996 Radio Romance Gary Balmaceda Star Cinema Jose Javier Reyes
1996 Ama, Ina, Anak Dennis Star Cinema Jose Javier Reyes
1996 Madrasta Dodie Star Cinema Olivia Lamasan
1997 Paano Ang Puso Ko? Jason Delgado Star Cinema Rory Quintos
1997 Home Along da Riles da Movie 2 Gabriel Star Cinema Efren Jarlego
1997 Flames: the Movie Joel Bernabe Star Cinema Khryss Adalia
1998 Kay Tagal Kang Hinintay Alex Medina Star Cinema Rory Quintos
1998 Dahil Mahal Na Mahal Kita Miguel Quirino Star Cinema Wenn Deramas
1999 Mula Sa Puso: The Movie Gabriel Maglayon Star Cinema Wenn Deramas
1999 Gimik: The Reunion Ricky Salveron Star Cinema Laurenti Dyogi
2002 Got 2 Believe Lorenz Montinola Star Cinema Olivia Lamasan

Television shows / specials[edit]

Year TV Show Role Notes / Episodes Director(s)
1995 - 2002 ASAP Himself Performer Johnny Manahan
1996 - 1999 Gimik Ricardo "Ricky" Salveron Main Role Laurenti Dyogi
1996 - 1997 Mara Clara Derrick Gonzales Book 2 Emil Cruz Jr., Jerry Lopez Sineneng
1996 Maalaala Mo Kaya Nico Main Role; Agua Bendita Jerry Lopez Sineneng
1996 Maalaala Mo Kaya Dante Main Role; Valentines Card Manny Castaneda
1996 Sine Siyete Rico Roses for Tracy
1996 Star Drama Presents Joshua Guest; He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not Edwin O'hara
1996 - 1998 'Sang Linggo nAPO Sila Host Danni Caparas, Victor de Guzman
1997 - 1999 Mula Sa Puso Gabriel Maglayon Main Role Wenn Deramas
1997 Esperanza (TV series) Gabriel Guest Don Cuaresma
1997 Wansapanataym Rico Pilot Episode; Ang Mahiwagang Palasyo Johnny Manahan
1997 Star Drama Presents Carlo Featured Artist; Matinee Idol Wenn Deramas
Star Drama Presents JJ Featured Artist; Rebelde Michael de Mesa
Star Drama Presents Marco Featured Artist; Internet Nick Lizaso
Star Drama Presents Jake Featured Artist; Take Two Eric Quizon
1998 Star Drama Presents Francis De Leon Featured Artist; Walang Personalan Johnny Manahan
Star Drama Presents Miguel Featured Artist; Recuerdo Wenn Deramas
Star Drama Presents Randy Macaraeg Featured Artist; Gubat sa Likod ng Rehas Wenn Deramas
Star Drama Presents Wilfredo Featured Artist; Jose, Reynaldo, Wilfredo Don Cuaresma
1999 Kulturang Handog Para Sa Bayan Host Johnny Manahan
1999 FLAMES Sam Main Role; Amerika o Wala Gilbert Perez
1999 Usapang Business Himself Guest
1999 - 2001 Saan Ka Man Naroroon Daniel Pineda Main Role Wenn Deramas
1999 Maalaala Mo Kaya Stephen Main Role; Medalya Ricky Davao
2000 Pipol Himself Guest
2000 Star Drama Presents Carl Mini Series; Main Role; Detour Chito Rono
2001 StarStudio Richard Main Role; Crossroads Leo Rialp
2002 Coverstory Himself Guest
2002 CinemaTalk Himself Guest
2001 - 2002 Whattamen Richard "Richie" Castro Main role John-D Lazatin
2001 - 2002 Magandang Tanghali Bayan Host Edgar Mortiz, Bobbet Vidanes

Awards and recognitions[edit]

Year Award Organization
1999 FAMAS Youth Achievement Award FAMAS
1999 Philippine National Red Cross Pledge 25 Spokesperson Philippine National Red Cross
1998 Official DECS-CSCA Spokesperson and Role Model for Students and Youth Department of Education Culture and Sports - CSCA
1998 Gawad KKK Outstanding Youth in The Field of Entertainment National Centennial Commission
1998 Medal of Honor, Outstanding Youth Role Model KASAMA Foundation and National Youth Commission
1998 Parangal ng Bayan/People's Choice Awardee People's Choice Philippines


Year Award Recipient Organization
2003 21st FAP Awards Best Actor Got 2 Believe University of the Philippines


1997 Best Male Star - Kislap Magazine
1997 Best Male Star - Movie Star Magazine
1997 Most Popular Young Male Star - Movie Star Magazine


  1. ^ Friday Five: Rico Yan's Unforgettable Performances ABS-CBN Dated 04/02/15. Retrieved 01/01/16
  2. ^ Throwback Star: We Love and Miss You, Rico Yan 'Star Cinema" Dated 03/20/14. Retrieved 03/25/14
  3. ^ Rico Yan #5 All Time Leading Man of Star Cinema Star Cinema Dated 03/24/14. Retrieved 03/25/14
  4. ^ No:1 Pinoy Love Team That We Wish Still Exist by Margarita Contreras "Cosmopolitan Philippines". Dated 09/10/14. Retrieved 09/11/14/
  5. ^ Rico Yan Unvieled Dated 05/04/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  6. ^ Rico Yan Answers 5 Facts Retrieved 03/27/14
  7. ^ This Yan Could Also Cook by Rikka Dylim Retrieved 04/03/14
  8. ^ Rico Yanism, Anyone? Retrieved 04/03/14
  9. ^ Rico Yan Power of Hug Retrieved 03/27/14
  10. ^ 'BANGUNGOT' Kills Rico Yan Claudine Still in Shock
  11. ^ My Enigmatic Rico by Teresita Yan 'People Asia". Dated 05/15/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  12. ^ A Grandfather Remembers by Amb. Manuel Yan 'The Journal Group. Dated 05/10/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  13. ^ Friends Forever Memorable Barkadas Star Cinema Dated 03/17/14. Retrieved 03/25/14
  14. ^ Goodbye Corics by Dir. Wenn Deramas 'Star Studio Magazine". Dated 05/09/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  15. ^ Bithday Ngayon ni Rico Yan by Ogie Diaz Dated 03/14/14. Retrieved 03/27/14
  16. ^ Dir. Rory Quintos on Rico Yan's Striking Resemblance to Thai Actor 'Philippine Entertainment Portal. Dated 10/17/12. Retrieved 03/27/14
  17. ^ An Indepth Look At The Depth of Rico Yan by Jet Valle 'Old article. Dated 04/04/01. Retrieved 03/27/17
  18. ^ Rico And His Field of Dreams 'The Philippine Star" Dated 02/10/02. Retrieved 03/28/14
  19. ^ A Riot Act with Whattamen by Stephani Zubiri 'Peple Asia" Dated 08/23/01. Retried 03/28/14
  20. ^ What Is Whattamen Up To? by Boy Abunda 'Philippine Star" Dated 04/1601. Retrieved 03/27/14
  21. ^ Getting Personal with Whattamen Retrieved 04/03/14
  22. ^ Dominic Ochoa says it took him about 3 years before getting over the demise of best friend Rico Yan 'Philippine Entertainment Portal" Dated 03/30/12. Retrieved 03/27/14
  23. ^ I Remember Rico Yan by Dir. Jose Javier Reyes 'Inquirer News" Dated 03/30/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  24. ^ Rico Yan #2 Cheesiest Quotes in Local Leading Men 'Spot. Ph' Retrieved 03/06/14
  25. ^ Magandang Tanggahali Bayan's Tribute to Rico Yan Retrieved 04/03/14
  26. ^ Who Should Replace Rico Yan in Whattamen? by Leia Torre 'Inquirer News" Dated 04/23/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  27. ^ Remembering Rico Yan 'Philippine Entertainment Portal" Dated 03/29/2007. Retrieved 03/27/14
  28. ^ Rico Yan #11 From Selling to Starting, 15 Ads That Made Celebs Spot. Ph Retrieved 03/06/14
  29. ^ Rico Yan Last Interview by Edgar Cruz 'Philippine Star" Dated 04/04/14. Retrieved 04/04/14
  30. ^ No Trace Of Drugs on Rico Yan 'The Philippine Star" Dated 04/02/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  31. ^ Experts Explain Cause Rico Yan's Death 'ABS-CBN News". Dated 03/29/12. Retrieved 03/25/14
  32. ^ Bad Friday 'Inquirer News" Dated 04/13/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  33. ^ Fans remember Rico Yan 'Philippine Entertainment Portal. Dated 03/26/08. Retrieved 03/27/14
  34. ^ Rico Yan A Funeral Fit for A President for Actor Who Want to be One by Lea Salterio Retrieved 03/27/14
  35. ^ Rico Yan #6 Most Attended Funerals in Philippine History
  36. ^ Rico Yan Death And Its Blessings by Louie An Pilapil 'YS Online". Dated 04/03/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  37. ^ Rico Yan There are Lessons Even As We Mourn by Cathy Babao-Gumbala 'Inquirer News". Dated 04/06/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  38. ^ Rico Yan Youth Foundation Launch 'Malaya News". Dated 05/08/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  39. ^ Rico Yan The Correspondents Special 'The Correspondents". Dated 04/01/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  40. ^ The Rico I knew by Butch Francisco 'Star Bytes". Dated 04/04/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  41. ^ The Mystique of Rico Yan A Wholesome Kid as A Icon by Sen. Blas Ople Retrieved 03/27/14
  42. ^ What A Man Rico Yan! by Monique Buensolido 'The Philippine Star" Dated 04/06/02. Retrieved 03/27/14
  43. ^ My Friend Rico by Father Tito Caluag 'Inquirer News" Dated 03/29/02. Retrieved 03/27/14

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