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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.

May 13, 2015

Will TV5's Remake Of 'Baker King' Starring Mark Neumann Be As Big A Hit As The Original Koreanovela?

‘BAKER KING’ (also known as King of Baking’) is a hit 2010 Koreanovela about Kim Takgu (played by Yoon Shi Yoon), the illegitimate son of the owner of a big food company and his mistress. He has to pass through so many trials before achieving his dream of finding his missing mother and becoming the best baker in Korea. The series was originally shown on GMA but the local adaptation is now made by TV5. TV5 Entertainment Head Wilma Galvante said they waited if GMA would get the rights for it and when the owner of the show said GMA didn’t get it, they bought the rights to do its local version in 2013. Now, they’re all set to show it starting May 18 at 9:30 PM, back to back with their other hit show, “Wattpad Presents”.

Mark Neumann is the lucky guy chosen to play the title role. Playing his dad as the company president is Raymond Bagatsing, with the newlywed Diana Zubiri as the housemaid who becomes Mark’s mother. Raymond’s legal wife is Jackielou Blanco, with Akihiro Blanco, Nicole Estrada and Malak So as their children. Mark will use the original name in the Korean series, Takgu and his leading ladies are Shaira Mae as Sunshine and Inah Estrada as Eunice. Also in the cast are Yul Servo as the president’s assistant who turns out to be the real dad of Akihiro, Boots Anson Roa as the family’s Korean matriarch Lee Hye Yeong, Joonee Gamboa as the master baker Javier, Allan Paule as the dad of Shaira and Ian de Leon as the protector of Mark.

Mark admits he feels much pressure in playing the lead role in “Baker King”. “I promise to do my best, kami ni Shaira, kasi they call as the Kilig Prince & Princess of TV5, so we won’t disappoint the management and also our director, Mac Alejandre, and all the senior co-stars who are supporting us in the show,” he says. “Pero kahit may pressure, mas nangingibabaw yung excitement to do this project and to work with our co-stars, like Tita Boots Anson Roa who was our mentor in the acting workshop during Artista Academy. I know we will learn so much from them about the craft of acting.”

It’s common knowledge he’s just 3rd placer to Vin Abrenica and Akihiro Blanco in Artista Academy. Now that he’s been chosen to play the plum role of “Baker King”, Vin was very vocal in his disappointment about being bypassed for the role. How does he feel about this? “I read the interview with him where he said that, but in the end, sabi niya, he loves that guy, ako raw, at wala siyang tampo sa akin. When we met sa TV5 studio, he hugged me and congratulated me, saying I deserve it and he’s happy for me. At least, I know he’s not taking it personally against me. I know lahat naman kami, hindi pinababayaan ng TV5.”