First look: Cursed Julia Barretto in 'Mira Bella'

Posted at 12/17/13 6:42 PM

MANILA -- The first teaser for "Mira Bella," the debut series of young actress Julia Barretto in a lead role, premiered during the primetime block of ABS-CBN on Monday.

The trailer, which aired during the timeslot of "Got to Believe," shows Barretto in a forest where her wooden skin appears to blend in. The curse, nonetheless, appears to have its gifts, as withered leaves and flowers bloom again at her touch.

Her fair skin then emerges at the mention of love.

The 46-second teaser is accompanied by the tune "Sabihin Mo sa Akin," which was originally performed by Sheryn Regis as the theme song of the 2005 fantasy series "Kampanerang Kuba."

"Mira Bella" was first announced in July and will be helmed by directors Erick Salud ("Aryana," "May Isang Pangarap") and Jerome Pobocan ("Mara Clara," "May Bukas Pa"), with neophyte actors Diego Loyzaga and Kiko Estrada as Barretto's leading men.

The two male leads have since been recast, with Enrique Gil and Sam Concepcion joining previously announced cast members Gloria Diaz, Mylene Dizon, Pokwang and John Lapus.

Produced by ABS-CBN's Dreamscape Entertainment Television ("Juan dela Cruz," "Ina, Kapatid, Anak," "Walang Hanggan"), the series was first unveiled in May as an adaptation of the Dominador Ad Castillo novel "Cofradia."

The story, which had film adaptations in 1953 and 1973, centers on Cofradia, a young woman who is afraid to fall in love because of her dark complexion. With the help of a magic candle, she eventually transforms into a beautiful lady.

However, due to criticisms over the material's alleged racism, Dreamscape, in July, announced it had re-worked the new series to feature an original story that is "equally exciting and equally beautiful."

According to its teaser, "Mira Bella" will air on ABS-CBN's "Primetime Bida."