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Mario Bautista, has been with the entertainment industry for more than 4 decades. He writes regular columns for People's Journal and Malaya.

Jul 14, 2016

Glaiza De Castro Creates Her Own Pirena In 'Encantadia', The Biggest Most Expensive Primetime Show That GMA-7 Has Produced So Far

‘ENCANTADIA’ is the biggest, most expensive primetime show that GMA-7 has come up with so far. Dubbed as a requel (retelling-sequel) of the 2005 telefantasya of the same title, it will start airing on Monday on GMA Telebabad after “24 Oras”, replacing “Poor Senorita”. The new sang’gres or keepers of the four gems are Glaiza de Castro as Pirena, Kylie Padilla as Amihan, Gabbi Garcia as Alena and Sanya Lopez as Danaya.

We’ve seen the pilot episode in the press preview and you can see GMA didn’t leave any stone unturned to make it lavish and spectacular. The imaginative sets, the fabulous costumes, the big action scenes well choreographed by a fight director imported from Hollywood, and the stunning CGI work will just amaze you. Kudos to Director Mark Reyes who became emotional as he spoke during the press launch, He conceived of it and executed everything with precision to make sure you’ve never seen anything like it before on local television. He has changed and updated the story for today’s viewers and added new characters.

“We retained the core of the original story sa umpisa but by Week 6, totally, bago na ang story compared to the first one,” he says. “Ito lang ang TV show na color graded and with its own sound design.”

The story is set in the fictitious realm called Encantadia which has four kingdoms: Lireo, Adamya, Sapiro and Hathoria. It starts with Sunshine Dizon as Adhara who killing the sister of Marian Rivera as Ynang Reyna Minea, Max Collins as Amihan. The first queen of Encantadia, Solenn Heussaff as Cassiopeia, then divides the gem that helps keep the balance in the entire kingdom into four, to make sure it won’t fall into the hands of evil forces.

Lireo and Adamya get the elemental gems of air and water. Sapiro has the earth gem while Hathor has the fire gem. Peace is shattered when Hathor wants to possess all the other gems to rule over the whole of Encantadia. There’s a war and all the gems are given to Ynang Reyna Minea of Lireo for safekeeping. But danger lurks when Ynang Reyna has to leave and should choose a successor among her four daughters. She chooses Amihan (Kylie),named after her dead sister, and this leads the disgruntled Pirena (Glaiza) to rebel, steal the fire gemstone and side with the Hathors.

Glaiza knows Sunshine Dizon had much impact as the original Pirena. “There’s pressure on me as she’ll be a tough act to follow but I convert it into something positive so I will do my best to give justice to Pirena, the wisest and the most ambitious among the four sisters,” she says. “Dahil siya ang panganay, she has groomed herself to be the next queen of Lireo, kaya sobrang naging disappointment siya nang si Amihan ang piliin. She junks her own family and kingdom at nangakong babalik lang siya sa Lireo to dethrone her sister and become the new queen. I really prepared hard for the role, physically by going to gym to make sure I will look and act like a warrior. But I also prepared internally for me to be able to create a new Pirena who’s a very complex character dahil bida-kontrabida siya. Kung minsan, mabait; kung minsan, masama. This is Pirena for the millennials.”

The star-studded cast of the new “Encantadia” includes Rocco Nacino as Aquil, Ruru Madrid as Ybarro, John Arcilla as Hagorn, Solenn Heussaff as Cassiopeia, Rochelle Pangilinan as Agane, Vaness del Moral as Gurna, Christian Bautista as Apitong, Jestoni Alarcon as Armeo, Pancho Magno as Hitano, Carlos Gonzales as Muros, Starstruck winners Klea Pineda as Muyak and Migo Adecer as Anthony, Ryan Eigenmann as Dado, Angelu de Leon as Amanda, Max Collins as Demetria, Julianne Lee as Alira, Buboy Villar as Wantuk, Kate Valdez as Mira, Mikee Quintos as Lira, James Teng as Pako, Ana Feleo as Ades, Nar Cabico as Banjo and Australia actor Conan Stevens in a special role as a Barbarian giant.