Donny Pangilinan and Belle Mariano give us the 411 on just how special Can’t Buy Me Love means to them.
Aside from being a staple of many Filipinos’ entertainment diets, the teleserye also serves as a vehicle to launch a new love team or give already established couples an even greater push. After all, there’s no platform quite like having your own teleserye air on primetime. So, Donny Pangilinan and Belle Mariano are naturally ecstatic with the fact that their first teleserye together, Can’t Buy Me Love, is finally airing. The show, which centers on Caroline (Mariano) and Bingo (Pangilinan), tells the story of two people from opposite ends of the social spectrum who cross paths in unexpected ways as they soon realize that their lives are more interconnected than they thought.
Serving as the second teleserye to come from the partnership between Netflix and ABS-CBN, Can’t Buy Me Love is heading towards its October 13 debut on the streaming service with much anticipation as the hottest new love team on the block takes their chemistry to an all-new format. We list down a few reasons why you shouldn’t miss out on the show below.
THE SERIES SHOWS A DIFFERENT SIDE OF THEMSELVES
At this point, Donny and Belle are no strangers to the industry, with years of experience under their belts. But what makes Can’t Buy Me Love special is how different Caroline and Bingo are, not just from the duo’s past roles, but also from themselves.
“I think it’s very exciting and challenging for us to go through these characters because it really opens up a new portal of how we interact with each other,” says Donny. Adds Belle, “Belle is so far from Caroline and so different from my previous works from Max or Ayaf.” More than just a new character to portray, Bingo and Caroline serve as a welcome challenge for Donny and Belle as they treat viewers to a new side of their acting prowess.
THEY IMMERSED THEMSELVES IN THE ROLE
Donny and Belle have prepared for every role they’ve taken on. And Can’t Buy Me Love is no exception. Given that Caroline is Filipino-Chinese, Belle took classes to practice her Mandarin. And since Bingo lives and works in Binondo, Donny, along with the cast and crew, went on an immersion trip to the busy section of Manila. But more than that, the two worked closely with director Mae Cruz Alviar to flesh out their characters.
Even details not pertinent to the story are discussed between cast and crew, an example being Belle internalizing the major moments of Caroline’s childhood. Even if it isn’t said or shown, the backstory of Bingo and Caroline is there, which helps inform how Donny and Belle should approach certain scenes. “I think every day we’re still preparing more and more as we’re getting more used to who Bingo and Caroline are,” explains Donny.
IT’S A DIFFERENT KIND OF DONBELLE CHEMISTRY
The kilig you all know and love from DonBelle will still be there. But what the teleserye offers is framing the chemistry in a new angle as Bingo and Caroline get to know each other. It’s what Donny describes as a “low-key kilig” of the sparks that are going to come from this show.
“Every time that we do something that they think they’ve seen, they’re like, ‘Okay, let’s try something else.’ So, I think that’s one thing we can look forward to in the show is just how different that kilig would be.” As for Belle, the very nature of Caroline means that it’s going to be a different kind of journey. “My character is very stoic. She’s such an alpha.”
IT ADDS NEW SPINS TO THE FORMULA
The poor boy meets rich girl storyline has been done in many movies and teleseryes over the decades. But Donny and Belle want you to know that Can’t Buy Me Love isn’t just there to tread old ground. “I think a misconception a lot of people had even prior to the release of the trailer was that it’s really just a rom-com,” shares Donny. As they tease, what the show will be about may not be exactly what you think it will be. The series will play on different genres that you wouldn’t expect to see from a teleserye from ABS-CBN.
“Caroline and Bingo will fall in love differently since there are a lot of different factors that will affect their relationship,” furthers Belle. And while the two were understandably tight-lipped at what narrative loops the show will take viewers on, they hope that it will leave a lasting impact on viewers. “Money can’t buy love and happiness,” is the message Belle hopes viewers get from the series. “I want our show to make an impact sa audience na you really find your happiness within yourself and the people you surround yourself with.”
As for Donny, he manifests into the world Can’t Buy Me Love giving audiences a new take on a classic tale. “I want the show to be remembered as something different. Hopefully, it could also be a journey towards something more than this.”
THEY’RE EXCITED FOR THE FANS TO SEE IT
It goes without saying that Can’t Buy Me Love means that fans will get to watch Donny and Belle on TV every weeknight. It’s a dream come true for many. But to hear it from the stars themselves, the moment is their honor as they see how hyped their fans are for the series. As Donny puts it, “We are excited as much as they are to showcase something every single day that they can watch. And, you know, we look forward to the comments about the theories. It’s really an experience we’re all gonna go through together. And we’re glad that we get to go through it with them.”
THEY FEEL THE SERIES WOULD MAKE THEIR YOUNGER SELVES PROUD
To be the lead star of a teleserye is a career achievement for any actor, more so for Donny, who put in the work and consistently improved his craft, and Belle, whose initial acting roles were playing the younger version of the lead actress in teleseryes and used her passions to fuel her growth. Looking back, the two feel that if their younger selves would see them now, they would be extremely proud of the people they became and the dreams they always wanted to achieve.
“I think my younger self would cry,” candidly reveals Belle. “I feel like she’d say ‘Oh my gosh’ and she’d be so happy.” It’s the same sentiment for Donny. “I think my younger self would be in disbelief, but at the same time hopefully I myself right now am an inspiration to my younger self as that’s one of the goals I had was would young Donny look up to Donny right now.”
Can’t Buy Me Love will premiere on Netflix on October 13, iWantTFC on October 14, and Kapamilya Channel, Kapamilya Online Live, Jeepney TV, TFC, A2Z, and TV5 on October 16.