The treasures of Primetime Queen Marian Rivera
KAPUSO DAY - Butch S. Raquel (The Philippine Star) - April 17, 2014 - 12:00am

GMA 7’s Primetime Queen Marian Rivera admitted she is more cautious about choosing her next project with the Kapuso Network after she renewed her contract last year. In fact, the actress revealed she rejected three of four story concepts before accepting the lead role in the ongoing primetime drama Carmela: Ang Pinakamagandang Babae sa Mundong Ibabaw.

It wasn’t a case of vanity or being too choosy; rather, it’s about Marian being more thoughtful, making sure she’s not just rehashing any character that she has already portrayed in the past. She wanted something different, something more challenging. And considering that Marian has done a number of well-received shows for GMA 7 — including Amaya, My Beloved and the local adaptation of the Korean drama Temptation of Wife — finding something fresh was not easy.

This is why doing Carmela opposite GMA Artist Center’s sought-after leading man Alden Richards appealed to Marian. For one, this is the first time the actress has a younger actor as a leading man. The show’s story itself highlights the lead characters’ (and, in turn, the actors’) slight age difference.

“I haven’t done anything like this before. Halos lahat ng nilatag nila para sa akin na ibang kwento, medyo malapit sa nagawa ko. Ito, first time akong magkakaroon ng leading man na mas bata sa akin. First time rin sa storya na nasa school ulit ako sa show,” Marian shared. “Lahat halos yun first time. Yung approach niya is bago para sa akin.”

Carmela is actually just the icing on the cake of Marian’s career, so to speak. She is currently enjoying massive popularity in a number of foreign territories. She is a big star in countries such as Vietnam and Malaysia as her past shows like Marimar and Endless Love air overseas. But she does not let the prospect of becoming an Asian superstar daunt her. For Marian, she’s merely doing a job that she treasures — the job of an actress.

Here are the other treasures in Marian Rivera’s life.

Most treasured person: Marian considers her family (specifically her parents and her grandmother) and, of course, boyfriend Dingdong Dantes as her life’s most treasured people.

But she also said her Triple A family (her management company, headed by Tony Tuviera and Rams David) and her fans are also among her “treasured people.”

Why not name just one? “Para sa akin, kapag sinabi mong mahalaga at nakakaimpluwensiya, hindi pwedeng isang tao lang yun. Marami sila sa buhay.”

The actress makes sure to make these people feel special by giving them time no matter how busy she is.

“Kung wala akong time bilang nagtatrabaho ako, hindi ako nagkukulang sa pagpapaalala na mahal ko sila,” she said.

Most treasured thing: Marian reveals her spiritual roots by naming a small Santo Niño statue as her life’s most treasured thing. It was given to her by her mother and she had it for as long as she can remember.

“It has been with me since I was a baby,” she said. “Ang weird, kwento kasi nung araw nung nagkasakit ako nung baby ako. Pero nung nilagay raw sa tabi ko yun, gumaling ako.”

It’s her go-to item not only when she’s feeling down or bad. “For all the blessings, I’m thankful that I’m able to experience them,” she said.

Most treasured place or travel destination: Spain remains Marian’s most special place. Aside from being her birthplace, the country is a treasured destination because that is where her father is.

“Every time na nagpupunta ako doon with Dong, iba yung feeling ko. Yun yung pinaka-fulfilling na pakiramdam kasi kasama ko ang lola ko at ang mama ko at ang papa ko na bihira kong makasama and with Dong pa yun,” she said. “Maraming lugar na pwedeng puntahan kung gusto ko mag-recharge, maraming lugar. Pero isa lang ito sa mga lugar na alam kong makikita ko ang papa ko.”

Marian does not specify a place that she likes frequenting in Spain. However, when she is in the country, she makes sure to eat out in restaurants. This isn’t surprising for anyone who follows her on Instagram, as her posts reveal she likes going out on dinner dates with Dingdong during free time.

Most treasured moment: Childlike Marian enjoys Christmas time the most. She cherishes the moment because it allows her to spend time with her family and Dingdong.

“Kapag Christmas kasi lahat ng tao mabait, di ba? Lahat ng tao mabait at lahat ng tao nagsasama-sama. And happy ako kapag Christmas kasi ito yung panahon na wala akong trabahong literal at kasama ko ang pamilya ko,” she said.

What’s the one thing she does during Christmas? “I go to Mass with my family and with Dong. Church talaga. Because for us, it’s really important. Hindi magiging strong ang relationship namin kung wala si God sa center namin. Doon kami firm na isa yun sa mga bagay na kailangang andyan.”

Most treasured moment as a Kapuso: The Carmela star has done countless TV and movie roles, but her breakthrough as the title character in Marimar remains her career’s most treasured moment. Of course, the character is also her most treasured role.

“Dahil sa Marimar, minahal ako ng tao, nabigyan ako ng ibang project with GMA. Marami akong nakilala, marami akong nakasalamuha. Yun ang naging stepping stone ko para maging Marian Rivera,” she said.

Before renewing with GMA 7 last year, there were rumors that Marian will move to another network. But she remained a loyal Kapuso star. “Walang dahilan kung bakit hindi ako magiging loyal na Kapuso dahil alam ko kung anong pagmamahal meron sa akin ang GMA. May trabaho ako or wala, andyan sila para sa akin.”

Most treasured show: Marian does not want to choose among her many shows as her career’s most treasured. Marian explained she merely “treasures everything.” And there’s a lot to treasure — from iconic title characters such as Marimar and Dyesebel to original ones such as Amaya and Carmela.

“Para sa akin, lahat mahalaga. Ang buhay ng tao, parang gulong lang yan. Hindi mo alam kung kailan mawawala at kung kailan ibibigay sa iyo. So kung may mga ganyang pagkakataon, mahalin mo,” she said.

Why Marian should treasure her show Carmela: “Ayokong mag-promise na, ‘Ay ito, gagawin namin sa Carmela, ito hindi.’ Basta ang masasabi ko, sa bawat trabahong ginagawa ko, binibigay ko ang best ko at ibibigay ko pa ang kaya ko ang ibigay,” Marian said.

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