Mercedes Cabral is every bit a masterpiece. One look at her will tell you that she is indeed the epitome of a true Filipina Beauty. This dusky lass’ seductively expressive eyes, her exquisitely raven tresses, and her full and ceaselessly smiling lips captivated us from the very first moment we laid eyes on her.
While she may look the part, Mercedes definitely goes way beyond the Maria Clara stereotype. Her intense work as an actress speaks volumes, where she’s literally been cast as both a saint (in Francis Villacorta’s St. Scholastica) and a sinner (in Brillante Mendoza’s Serbis).
Speaking of her work, Mercedes is fast becoming a household name in the international independent film circuit. After a breakthrough performance in the celebrated indie film Serbis, her passion for the art (which she claims she inherited from her artist parents) caught the attention of movie directors all over the world during the 61st Cannes Film Festival.
This Fine Arts major from the University of the Philippines just recently completed shooting her first international starrer, Thirst, a horror-thriller from acclaimed Korean director Park Chan-Woo (of Oldboy fame). She is also the first and, so far, only Filipina member of the Asia-Pacific Actors Network (APAN).
Looking beyond the roles she’s played, as we at PLAYBOY found out while directing her in our shoot, Mercedes proved to be a genuinely candid, down to earth person. Not bad for someone who recently bested Hollywood mainstays such as Cate Blanchett, Natalie Portman, and Penelope Cruz for the title of the “most beautiful” woman on the red carpet at Cannes.
Having already established herself in the independent film circuit, Mercedes wants to try dabbling into mainstream acting. “After everything I’ve gone through in our relatively small, yet highly progressive indie scene, I want to be able to contribute something new and different to local mainstream cinema,” Mercedes says.
“One of the biggest differences I’ve noticed, after being exposed to the culture of film audiences of other countries, is that here most viewers tend to notice the more superficial aspects of a movie. Like in Serbis, most local viewers seemed to give more importance to the nudity over the film’s actual story or how it was directed,” she adds in a manner most fiery.
Although many of us may indeed be guilty of noticing her divinely delectable curves before anything else, we all have to admit that Mercedes is right. She simply wants to bring Filipino artistry to the next level in her own feisty way. That is just typical Mercedes Cabral for you, PLAYBOY’s very own Maria Clara with a kick.
Cover girl Mercedes Cabral also appears in Playboy PH’s November 2010 issue. Check out her red hot pictorial here.