Richard Yap as Sir Chief and Jodi Sta. Maria as Maya in 'Be Careful With My Heart.' Photo: Handout
'Fairytale wedding' airs on November 15
MANILA -- Credited for shaking up daytime programming on local TV, "Be Careful With My Heart" started as an "experimental" series which has become arguably the most popular "kilig-serye" in the Philippines.
The ABS-CBN series first aired on July 9, 2012 to feature the untested tandem of 31-year-old Jodi Sta. Maria, who at the time was already on her 15th year as an actress, and 46-year-old Richard Yap, a commercial model-turned-actor who had just started in the business.
Directed by Jeffrey Jeturian and Mervyn Brondial, "Be Careful With My Heart" debuted at No. 1 in its 11:15 a.m. timeslot, and was already among the Top 10 programs in the country then.
With a steady increase in its nationwide viewership over the last year, the series now consistently ranks on the Philippines' Top 5 programs to become the only daytime series to achieve the feat, according to data from Kantar Media.
The series now airs during ABS-CBN's "PrimeTanghali" block at 11:45 a.m.
Its one-year-and-three-month run so far has made it the first local TV series to air for more than a year since 2010. The last Pinoy soap opera to stay on air for over a year was "May Bukas Pa," the inspirational series starring Zaijan Jaranilla, in 2010.
The popularity of "Be Careful With My Heart" has also spawned a line of merchandise, a gold-selling official soundtrack album, and an international concert tour for Filipino viewers overseas.
The New York Festivals-nominated series was, at one point, also set to be translated into a movie. However, due to the "tight schedule" in filming the ongoing series, the big-screen version was eventually pulled out from the 2013 Metro Manila Film Festival.
Originally slated for a one-season run, "Be Careful With My Heart" centers on the love story of Maya dela Rosa (Sta. Maria), a barrio lass with big dreams, and Richard Lim (Yap), a widowed businessman with three children.
Due to the series' popularity, it has been extended numerous times, with several "milestones" in the relationship of the nanny-turned-flight attendant and her former employer marking highlights throughout the program's run.
With the wedding of Maya and Richard set to air on November 15, Friday, here's a look-back at the Twitter-trending milestones in their love story, as well as of "Be Careful With My Heart" as the No. 1 daytime show in the Philippines.