'Maria Mercedes' remake to air on ABS-CBN

Posted at 06/06/2013 7:18 PM | Updated as of 06/07/2013 11:15 AM

Actor Jason Abalos talks about his role in the remake of the upcoming series "Maria Mercedes"

MANILA, Philippines – Actor Jason Abalos has confirmed that ABS-CBN is indeed doing a remake of the hit "telenovela" "Maria Mercedes."

In an interview with ABS-CBN News during his contract signing with Star Magic on Thursday, Abalos said he and the other cast members of the series remake have already started taping for the show.

“Kasama ko sila Jessy Mendiola and Jake Cuenca. Tapos na ang workshop. Nag-start na kami ng taping, ginagawa na namin ngayon yung pilot,” he revealed.

Abalos said he will take on the role of Clavio, the childhood friend of Maria Mercedes (Mendiola) who will eventually fall in love with her.

“Maria Mercedes” was first popularized by Mexican superstar Thalia in the title role when it was first aired locally by the Kapamilya network in 1996.

It tells the story of a street urchin whose life takes a turn when she agrees to marry an immensely rich man who is terminally ill.

Asked if there will be modifications from the original story of “Maria Mercedes,” Abalos said: “Yung dati, based sa Mexico. Ganun pa rin ang tema pero tayo naka-base sa totoong nangyayari sa Pilipinas.”

Meanwhile, Abalos is not closing his mind on the idea of possibly falling in love with Mendiola in real life.

“Hindi imposible 'yan dahil sa kwento talagang dapat ma-in love ako kay Maria Mercedes. Mas okay 'yan kung mas totoo kong mararamdaman,” he said.

It won't be the first time ABS-CBN has tapped a Kapamilya actress to reprise a role popularized by Thalia.

In 2011, a remake of the TV drama "Maria la del Barrio" had ABS-CBN talent Erich Gonzales in the title role, also originally played by Thalia.