Maricar de Mesa is back to doing regular teleseryes after two years. She makes her comeback via GMA-7's new afternoon series, Dragon Lady.
In 2017, she gave birth to her child and took a temporary break from showbiz.
For her teleserye comeback, Maricar is set to play a kontrabida to Janine Gutierrez (who plays the title role) and Diana Zubiri (who plays Janine's mother).
Prior to appearing in Dragon Lady, Maricar was a guest in the ABS-CBN drama anthology, Ipaglaban Mo, that aired last Saturday, March 2.
Despite being a freelancer, it can be noticed that Maricar's projects, especially the teleseryes, are almost always with GMA-7.
Maricar points out, "Home ko naman ito, e. Dito naman talaga yung puso ko.
"So, kung nagkakaroon man ako ng guesting na per project sa kabila, it's just for that, pero lagi pa rin akong bumabalik-balik dito."
Maricar started her career in 1995 when she became a part of Bubble Gang.
But she gained fame for being a "GobiGirl" in the 1996 game show, GoBingo, hosted by Arnel Ignacio.
This was then followed by a kontrabida role in the 2001 teleserye, Sana Ay Ikaw Na Nga, where she played Olga, the third wheel to Tanya Garcia and Dingdong Dantes.
Maricar is thankful to GMA-7 for giving her a break in showbiz.
"Oo, grateful ako sa kanila. Imagine, bata pa ako, dito ako nagsimula sa GMA. More than 20 years."
PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) spoke to Maricar during the recent media conference for Dragon Lady at Shangri-La Best, West Avenue, Quezon City.
In Dragon Lady, Maricar plays Vera Lim, a Chinese heiress who is the main kontrabida of the show. Joyce Ching plays her daughter Astrid. They form a tandem that causes great sorrow for the lead stars.
Maricar describes her role as, "magpapahirap sa buhay ng mag inang Diana at Janine."
Off-cam, Maricar has formed a close bond with Diana.
"Alam mo, ang isang masayang part diyan, kapag gusto mo yung mga katrabaho mo. Parang magaan, you look forward going to the set," says Maricar.
"Kasi, let's admit it, merong minsang... meron kang trabaho na ganyan yung pakiramdam na, 'Ay, may taping na naman.'
"Pero ito, I look forward to it.
"Kami ni Diana, first time namin nagkatrabaho. Magkakilala kami pero never pa kami nagkatrabaho, pero first day pa lang namin sa set, nag-click kami, nag-room share nga kami agad."
Maricar says she had to learn to speak Chinese for her role in Dragon Lady.
"Hindi lang siya typical teleserye na may inaapi, may naaapi.
"Meron din siyang little background ng legend ng Chinese culture.
"Nagtsa-Chinese din ako. Medyo may mga dialogue din tayo na nagtsa-Chinese."
According to Maricar, it was the first time she needed to learn a new language for a role.
"First time ko na magsasalita ako ng ibang language na noong una, wala akong kaalam-alam.
"Pero in fairness, hindi siya mahirap aralin. Minsan yung mga dialogue pa namin, in between ng whole line.
"Maybe because yung intonation din nila, it's like a pattern. So, in my ear, parang kanta lang siya. Parang tono siya kaya mas name-memorize ko."
Dragon Lady aired its pilot episode on March 4 on GMA Afternoon Prime.
Aside from Janine Gutierrez, Dragon Lady also features Tom Rodriguez and Edgar Allan Guzman.
Bea Binene, Kristoffer Martin, and Derrick Monasterio also play special roles in the first two weeks.