By BOY VILLASANTA
New actress Mercedes Cabral left for Seoul, South Korea early this week to continue the shoot of "Thirst," a Korean production directed by the 2004 Grand Prix winner for direction, Park Chan-woo, for the film "Oldboy."
Cabral grabbed the headlines when she won the online voting for Most Beautiful Actress who walked the red carpet in the recently concluded 61st Cannes Film Festival in France.
She bested the likes of Cate Blanchett, Penelope Cruz, Natalie Portman, and Salma Hayek.
Cabral left for Korea with former manager Rei Raña who was responsible for winning the contract with a Korean film producer.
"Mga dalawang linggo po ako sa Korea para kunan ang mga eksena ko then babalik ako sa Pilipinas to promote ‘Latak.’ Then, babalik po ako sa Korea afterwards and then balik na naman sa Pilipinas to do a new movie," said Cabral.
"Nakaka-excite talaga ang trabaho ko at hindi ko akalain na ganito kabilis ang takbo ng career ko," she added.
Before she went to Korea, she watched "Serbis" with director Jowee Morel and some friends.
Cabral plays the sexually aggressive girlfriend of actor Coco Martin's character in "Serbis" who cries when she gets pregnant by her boyfriend who is not ready for commitment.
"I am very proud of what I did in ‘Serbis.’ It’s not a porno movie. It has something to say about the decadence of Philippine society. Contrary to what they say, ‘Serbis’ is an eye-opener to Filipinos (as to) why we don’t prosper as a nation. We don’t give up immoral things so we don’t advance as a country," said Cabral.
The actress is a UP Fine Arts student who has been doing theater for a long time.
In "Thirst," Mercedes plays the Filipina wife of a Korean national who is very passionate about their love affair.
"Napakalayo ng filmmaking sa Korea sa Pilipinas. Advanced na advanced ang Korea lalo na sa technology kasi very open sa mga bagong ideas ang mga Koreyano," said Cabral.