Soap classic 'Anna Liza' returns to TV

By Reyma Buan-Deveza,

Posted at Mar 19 2013 11:55 AM | Updated as of Mar 20 2013 01:49 AM

Andrea Brillantes. Photo from twitter account

MANILA, Philippines -- After more than 30 years since it debuted on television, the well-loved soap opera that turned child star Julie Vega into a household name is returning to the small screen.

On Monday, ABS-CBN announced that child actress Andrea Brillantes, was chosen to play the title role of a poor girl "who has an immense capacity to touch and change the lives of everyone who crosses her path."

Brillantes, 10, whose former screen name was Blyth Gorostiza joined "Goin Bulilit" in 2010. She was later cast as the young Jackie, later played by Jessy Mendiola, in "Budoy."

She was also part of the shows "E-Boy,""Kahit Puso'y Masugatan" and "Ina Kapatid Anak."

"Excited na excited kasi pangarap ko talaga magkaroon ng lead role," Brillantes said about her big break "Mabait po ako (as Annaliza) at na-kidnap po ako sa aking tunay na magulang."

Brillantes, who was only three when she got hit by the showbiz bug, said she hopes to follow in the footsteps of her idol Kim Chiu.

Apart from Brillantes, "Annaliza" also stars Denise Laurel, Kaye Abad, Carlo Aquino and Zanjoe Marudo.

True to the original

"Anna Liza" premiered in 1980 and ended with an incomplete story after Vega untimely death in 1986 from a cardiac arrest and bronchopneumonia.

In an interview with, the show’s director Theodore Boborol said the new "Annaliza" will will remain true to the original storyline but with a twist.

“We got the name of the characters but mayroon kaming babaguhin. Like the Guido character played by Renato del Prado, in the original version was a bad character. Dito gagawin namin siyang mabuti at hindi na siya two-dimensional character. Meaning mga tao ang mga ito. Wala nang mabait or siya yung good. Parang totoong tao ang gagampanan ng mga tao sa 'Annaliza,'" he said.

The director also said he is confident that Brillantes will do justice to the iconic role.

“Masasabi ko sa bata na mabait, malambing at sweet, mabilis magtiwala at malalim. Malalim ang pinaghuhugutan niya based sa kanyang personal na buhay. Kaabang-abang siya kasi nakita ko siya sa first soap, 'yung sa ‘Alyna.’ Doon palang nakitaan ko na siya ng potential magaling,” he said.