Normally, we'd refer to textbooks and anecdotes when depicting famous personalities who lived in an entirely different era.
In the case of some of our local national heroes, contemporary artists—painters, sculptors, even actors—go with what they have read or heard when doing artistic representations of such figures.
It's recently been revealed though that we've been wrongly viewing one of them. According to Fukuoka Academic Prize recipient and historian Ambeth Ocampo, "Lapu-Lapu was not a handsome, gym-fit warrior who killed Magellan."
In his recent column on INQUIRER.net, in which he cited a chapter from Danilo Madrid Gerona's Ferdinand Magellan: The Armada de Maluco and the European Discovery of the Philippines, Ocampo wrote also that "Lapu-Lapu was, like President-elect Rodrigo Duterte, 70 years old [at the time of time of historic fight]. He was not in the battle itself."
The book was based on Spanish and Portuguese primary sources discovered in Madrid and Sevilla repositiories.
He also shared on Facebook a photo comparison of the perceived Lapu-Lapu and what he may have really looked like:
That means the current Lito Lapid, already 60 years old, could have still passed off portraying the hero from Cebu in the eponymous biopic the former senator starred in 2002.
In the words of Ocampo, this development is "another textbook fairy tale down the drain."