Julia Barretto. Photo courtesy of the actress' official Facebook fan page
MANILA, Philippines – Dubbed as "showbiz royalty" owing to her clan of local celebrities, Julia Barretto hopes to follow in the footsteps of her aunt, Claudine.
The daughter of former actress Marjorie Barretto and comedian-actor Dennis Padilla, Julia was formally introduced Thursday as one of the 12 new recruits of ABS-CBN's talent management firm Star Magic.
As part of the group dubbed "Star Magic Circle 2013," Julia's career beginnings is already on track to follow Claudine's, the younger sister of Marjorie and another Barretto actress, Gretchen.
Claudine, whose career now spans over 20 years, was among the first "discoveries" of Star Magic, and went on to become arguably the most popular and visible actress of her generation during her peak.
Her TV series "Mula sa Puso" (1997) and "Marina" (2004), among others, became the most watched programs on local television during its respective run. The 33-year-old actress' film portrayals also earned her several trophies from award-giving bodies.
Referring to her aunt, Julia said, "Her teleseryes, her movies, sobrang 'yun 'yung gusto kong projects, that's why [I want to follow her career path]. Gusto ko rin kasi, all around -- I don't want to just stick to like one role, always the good girl. Siyempre gusto ko may pagka-bad girl, pero bida. I want to explore."
Since getting her first taste of the limelight via her short appearances in a number of Kapamilya series like "Kokey" (2007), "Walang Kapalit" (2007), and "Palos" (2008), Julia has been raring to pursue acting as a career.
Of her launch as a member of Star Magic Circle 2013, the 15-year-old upcoming actress said, "I'm very, very happy. Matagal ko nang hinihintay 'yung day na 'to. I'm very happy that finally it has arrived."
With her famous mom's and aunts' successes in the entertainment industry preceding her entry, Julia said she sees as an advantage the "pressure" that comes with being a Barretto.
"I think advantage na rin 'yon because it makes you want to do better, it makes you want to act better para mabigyan ng magandang show 'yung mga tao. I will take it as a good thing," she said.
While she is set to take on showbiz projects, Julia is careful not to neglect her studies -- she is currently in second year high school -- as she had agreed upon with her parents.
"They never really disagreed with it (entering showbiz), basta ang usapan is once you enter, gusto nila ma-balance ko 'yung school and 'yung showbiz. I do think I can balance it," she said.