Katrina Halili said that playing Angelika Santibanez in GMA-7's 2007 adaptation of MariMar is her favorite kontrabida role.
However, did you know that it actually took some time before she accepted the Angelika role?
The 32-year-old actress explained, "Yung MariMar na yun, sobrang favorite ko yun noong bata ako. Yung Tagalog [version], pinanunuod ko talaga siya as in adik talaga ako.
"Tapos bago siya gawin ng GMA, merong nagre-release dito ng lumang films, pinanood ko siya. Hindi ko alam na ire-release ng GMA, ha. Wala akong idea. So pinanuod ko siya.
"Tapos noong pinanood ko siya, sabi ko, hindi ko tatanggapin itong Angelika Santibanez na ito. Hindi ko tatanggapin 'pag binigay sa akin yan, kapag ginawa 'yan ng GMA."
Months later, GMA bought the rights to do a remake of the 1996 telenovela starring Thalia. Homegrown talents were asked to audition for the lead role, which eventually went to Marian Rivera.
Katrina recalled, "Pina-audition kasi kaming lahat, e. So required. So nakuha ako sa Angelika.
"Di ko tinanggap, as in two weeks hindi ako nag-attend ng mga storycon, ayoko! Ganun ako ka-wild fan!"
Katrina was convinced to accept the role when a slight deviation was made in the Philippine version. Angelika's character became the third wheel to Marimar and Sergio (Dingdong Dantes).
In the original series, Angelika (Chantal Andere) was the evil stepmother of Sergio (Eduardo Capetillo). She despises Marimar because of her innocence and her poverty.
Katrina continued, "'Tapos ayun, pinilit ako, tapos naging okay naman. Ang ginawa ko na lang, ginaya ko yung Mexican.
"Kung mapapansin mo, iba yung acting ko, ginaya ko yung Mexican, arte-arte talaga, pati pagsalita ko, iniiba ko yung boses ko nun, e.
"'Tapos mga kilos ko talagang gusto ko, ano ako dito, yung Mexican yung atake pero pag nagsalita ng Tagalog may ibang dating. So yun ang ginawa ko doon."
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) spoke to Katrina during the February 2 press conference of her upcoming teleserye The Stepdaughters held at Prime Hotel, Quezon City.
FIGHT SCENES WITH MEGAN YOUNG. In her new show titled The Stepdaughters, Katrina plays Isabelle Salvador, a rich businesswoman who becomes the bitter rival of Mayumi dela Rosa, portrayed by Megan Young.
They became enemies after an incident during their childhood.
Their feud becomes worse when years later, they cross paths again and Isabelle's father (Gary Estrada) decides to marry Mayumi's mother (Glydel Mercado).
While Katrina is no stranger to playing kontrabida roles, she admitted that she had to exert extra effort in portraying Isabelle.
Laughing, she said, "Ito mas sosyal, mas fashion-fashion, kailangan ko magpanggap na talagang alta-alta.
"Medyo mahirap siya, friend, bilang cowboy-cowboy lang tayo! Ito talaga, finesse, medyo English ang lola mo. Yun lang, kailangan [mag]-fight sa ganoong level."
Viewers can look forward to intense fight scenes between Katrina and Megan.
"Nagsampalan na rin kami. Nagkasakitan kami doon pero hindi namin na-feel actually, hindi namin na-feel yung sakitan.
"Kasi sabi ko, pag nandun ka na sa scene, sobrang gigil mo, kasi di ba kailangan ma-feel mo yung gigil, makita ng audience na nangigil ka, di mo mapi-feel na kinurot kita, so wala naman.
"Okay naman, happy ako kasi magaan sila katrabaho, magaan si Megan katrabaho. Pinag-uusapan namin yung mga fight scenes namin kaya wala kaming nagiging problema."
Since it's the first time that Katrina is working with Megan in a teleserye, how did she deal with their fight scenes?
Katrina answered, "Actually, sinabi ko sa kanyang sanay ako sa fake. Sabi niya, hindi, kaya tinotohanan namin ng konti.
"So ako, pinapadampi ko lang ng slight pero ina-act out ko lang din. Ayoko kasing nananakit, e. Kasi kung totoong sasampalin mo siya, paliliparin mo yung mukha niya, di ba, ang hirap.
"So kailangan i-act out ko na lang na malakas. Tapos minsan, ginaganun ko yung hair niya para tatama sa hair bago sa mukha."
By "ginaganun," Katrina meant that she uses Megan's hair as a shield when slapping her.
GMA-7 is known for afternoon dramas that feature campy yet entertaining fight scenes, such as Ika-6 Na Utos, Haplos, and Impostora.
How will the fight scenes in The Stepdaughters, which will premiere on February 12, be different from other shows?
"Sa amin, medyo may sexiness. Parang ganun yung gagawin.
"Ewan ko, paano namin gagawing class ang pag-aaway namin, kailangan maging class.
"Hindi naman class pero, di ba, knowing yung hitsura ni Megan, beauty queen, magiging class talaga siya, iaarte ko na lang din!"