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Melai Cantiveros

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Melai Cantiveros
Cantiveros in 2014
Melisa Bunayog Cantiveros

(1988-04-06) April 6, 1988 (age 36)
General Santos, Philippines[1]
  • Actress
  • comedian
  • host
Years active2009–present
AgentStar Magic (2010–present)
(m. 2013)

Melisa Bunayog Cantiveros-Francisco[a] (Tagalog: [ˈmɛlaɪ kantɪˈbɛɾɔs]; born April 6, 1988) is a Filipino actress, comedian, and host. She came to prominence in 2009, after winning Pinoy Big Brother: Double Up. In 2015, she won the first season of the Filipino version of Your Face Sounds Familiar. She is currently one of ABS-CBN's contract talents. She currently hosts a morning talk show, Magandang Buhay, alongside Regine Velasquez and Jolina Magdangal.

Personal life


Melisa Bunayog Cantiveros was born in General Santos, Philippines, to Dionisio and Virginia Cantiveros. She is the third of four siblings, and the only daughter. She finished at Mindanao State University–General Santos,[1] where she was an activist and member of a social democratic party.

She married Jason Francisco on December 9, 2013 as she carried their first child,[2] Amelia “Mela” Lucille, born in April 2014 in General Santos.[3] On July 26, 2016, she and Francisco confirmed their separation through their daughter’s Instagram.[4] The couple later reconciled, with Cantiveros having her second child with Francisco, Stela Rosalind, in April 2017.[5][6] The couple now have the YouTube channel “Melason Family.”[7]



In October 2009, Cantiveros entered the Big Brother house along with 25 other housemates. After 133 days, she was able to garner enough votes to reach the final episode wherein she won the competition by getting 1,226,675 votes or 32.08% of the entire votes.

In February 2010, Cantiveros did guesting in several talk shows like The Buzz, SNN: Showbiz News Ngayon, and Entertainment Live. She was also invited to variety shows such as ASAP ROCKS. She and her real life partner, Jason Francisco, starred in a reality show spin off entitled Melason In Love.

Cantiveros was also cast in the daytime drama Impostor. She also landed a main role in the fantaserye show, Kokey @ Ako. She also played a main role in Maalaala Mo Kaya as a maid named Pangga. She became one of the hosts on the now defunct noon time show Happy, Yipee, Yehey. She also played a main role as Brandy De la Paz in Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Mana Po before the show ended in late March.

In February 2015, Cantiveros became the winner of Your Face Sounds Familiar.[citation needed]




Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2009–2010 Pinoy Big Brother: Double Up Herself / Housemate Big Winner
2010 Kokey at Ako Josa Reyes
Melason In Love Herself
Melason: In Da City Herself
Melason: Promdi Heart Herself
Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Impostor Devina "Devin" Ventura
Maalaala Mo Kaya Pangga Episode: "Toy Car"
Wansapanataym Inday Vargas Episode: "Inday Bote"
ASAP Herself / Co-host / Performer
2010–2015 Banana Sundae Herself / Various Characters
2010 Showtime Herself / Guest Judge
Matanglawin Herself / Guest Co-host
2011 Precious Hearts Romances Presents: Mana Po Brandi Dela Paz
Maalaala Mo Kaya Young Carol Araos Episode: "Birth Certificate"
100 Days to Heaven Girlie
2011–2013 I Dare You Herself / Co-host
2011 Wansapanataym Episode: "Wan Tru Lav"
2011–2016 Kris TV Herself / Co-host Recurring
2011–2012 Happy Yipee Yehey! Herself / Co-host
2012 Pinoy Big Brother: Unlimited Herself — Houseguest
Wansapanataym Bituin Episode: "Dollhouse"
Maalaala Mo Kaya Norma Episode: "Baunan"
2013 Wansapanataym Pepay Episode: "Number One Father & Son
Be Careful With My Heart Gemma
Apoy sa Dagat Paprika Mendoza
2013–2014 Honesto Cleopatra Batungbakal
2014 Ikaw Lamang Monica Miravelez Guest role
Maalaala Mo Kaya Nonette Episode: "Jeep"
Ipaglaban Mo! Elena Episode: "Nang Dahil Sa Utang"
Wansapanataym Dory Episode: "Perfecto"
Two Wives Carla
Umagang Kay Ganda Herself / Co-host
2015 Your Face Sounds Familiar Herself Grand Winner (season 1)
Co-Host (season 2)
Wansapanataym Beverly Episode: "Noche Buena Gang"
Give Love on Christmas Ruby Episode: "Exchange Gift"
2016 We Will Survive Ma. Cecilia "Maricel" Rubio [9]
2016–present Magandang Buhay Herself / Co-host [10]
2018–2019 Pinoy Big Brother: Otso
2020–2021 Pinoy Big Brother: Connect
2021–2022 Pinoy Big Brother: Kumunity Season 10
2022 The Chosen One: Soap Opera Host / Jane Crame [11]
2023 PIEnalo Herself / Co-host [12]
Ur Da Boss Herself / Main Host
It's Your Lucky Day Herself / Co-host


Year Title Role Notes Source
2010 I Do Marian
2011 The Adventures of Pureza, Queen of the Riles Pureza [13]
2012 Larong Bata Ms. De Regla
2012 Sisterakas Janet
2014 Past Tense Kelly
2014 Shake, Rattle & Roll XV Julie Segment: “Ahas”
2015 You're Still The One Meanne
2015 Sekyu [14]
2015 The Prenup Choosy Cayabyab
2018 DOTGA: Da One That Ghost Away Annabelle Special participation
2018 Mary, Marry Me Carey
2021 Momshies! Ang Soul Mo’y Akin Mylene
The Exorsis Jessa Mae
2022 The Entitled Yaya Monina
2023 Ma'am Chief: Shakedown in Seoul Police Exec. Msgt. Criselda Kaptan

Awards and nominations

Awards and nominations received by Melai Cantiveros
Award[b] Year[c] Category Nominee / Work Result Ref.
ASAP POP Viewers' Choice Awards 2010 Pop Fans Club Melason Won [15]
2011 Pop Movie Loveteam The Adventures of Pureza: Queen of the Riles Nominated [16]
Asia Artist Awards 2023 Best Actor Award Ma’am Chief: Shakedown in Seoul Won [17][18]
Asian Television Awards 2024 Best Quiz or Game Show Host Ur Da Boss Nominated [19]
Cosmopolitan Awards 2010 Fun Fearless Women Herself Won [20]
Global Awards for Outstanding Executives 2022 Events Host & Media Influencer Herself Won [21]
International Emmy Awards 2011 Best Telenovela Impostor Nominated [22][23]
PMPC Star Awards for Movies 2011 New Movie Actress of the Year I Do Nominated [24]
PMPC Star Awards for Television 2023 Best Celebrity Talk Show Host Magandang Buhay Won [25]
2021 Nominated [26]
2019 Nominated [27]
2018 Nominated [28]
2017 Nominated [29]
2016 Nominated [30]
2014 Best Reality Show Host I Dare You Nominated [31]
2010 New Female TV Personality Melason Nominated [32]


  1. ^ In this Philippine name for married women, the birth middle name or maternal family name is Bunayog, the birth surname or paternal family name is Cantiveros, and the marital name is Francisco.
  2. ^ Awards, festivals, honors and other miscellaneous organizations are listed in alphabetical order.
  3. ^ Indicates the year of ceremony. Each year is linked to the article about the awards held that year, wherever possible.


  1. ^ a b "Melai". Pinoy Big Brother: Double Up. ABS-CBN Corporation. Archived from the original on July 7, 2012. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  2. ^ "Melai Confirms Pregnancy, will Marry Jason". ABS-CBN News. September 8, 2013. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  3. ^ "Melai, Jason Announce Baby Daughter's Name". ABS-CBN News. April 5, 2014. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  4. ^ "Melason No More: Jason Confirms Split with Melai". ABS-CBN News. July 27, 2016. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  5. ^ Abanilla, Clarizel (April 10, 2017). "LOOK: Melai gives birth to second baby". INQUIRER.net. Retrieved June 29, 2020.
  6. ^ Pasajol, Anne (April 2, 2024). "On April Fools' Day, Melai Cantiveros recalls denial of feelings for Jason Francisco". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  7. ^ Mariano, Dianne (September 8, 2023). "Fun family moments of Melai Cantiveros, Jason Francisco with kids Mela and Stela that will brighten your day". GMA Integrated News. Retrieved April 7, 2024.
  8. ^ Cruz, Marinel R. (June 10, 2015). "'Face' win Embarrasses Melai". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved October 6, 2016.
  9. ^ Red, Isah V. (February 28, 2016). "'We Will Survive' Tonight". Simply Red. Manila Standard. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  10. ^ Jimenez, Joyce (April 12, 2016). "Melai, Karla, Jolina to Host Replacement Show for 'Kris TV'". The Philippine Star. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  11. ^ Cruz, Marinel (October 5, 2022). "Melai Cantiveros' biggest challenge as a TV host". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved April 29, 2023.
  12. ^ "Melai Cantiveros, Samantha Bernardo join forces to host PIE Channel's game show". ABS-CBN News. February 14, 2023. Retrieved February 15, 2023.
  13. ^ "The Director's Hand in Adventures of Pureza". GMA News. July 30, 2011. Retrieved April 11, 2016.
  14. ^ San Diego Jr., Bayani (February 3, 2016). "Tormentor/Mentor with a Cause". Philippine Daily Inquirer. Retrieved October 5, 2016.
  15. ^ "Sarah Geronimo wins in five categories of the 6th ASAP Pop Viewers Choice Awards". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  16. ^ "Sarah Geronimo, Kapamilya stars honored at the 2011 ASAP Pop Viewers' Choice Awards". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  17. ^ 이준호·뉴진스·세븐틴·스키즈·임영웅, AAA '대상'..뉴진스 6관왕 '최다'[2023 AAA][종합] [Lee Junho, NewJeans, Seventeen, SKZ, Lim Young-woong, AAA 'Grand Prize'.. NewJeans 6 Champions 'Most' [2023 AAA] [Comprehensive]]. Star News (in Korean). December 14, 2023. Archived from the original on December 14, 2023. Retrieved December 14, 2023.
  18. ^ Iglesias, Iza (December 14, 2023). "Melai Cantiveros wins Best Actor at AAA 2023". The Manila Times. Retrieved December 14, 2023.
  19. ^ Bote, Jia (November 13, 2023). "Filipino stars, shows among 28th Asian TV Awards nominees". The Daily Tribune. Retrieved December 16, 2023.
  20. ^ "Melai Cantiveros hailed as one of Cosmopolitan's Fun Fearless Females". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  21. ^ C., Toff. "LOOK: Melai Cantiveros receives award as host and media influencer | PUSH.COM.PH". ABS-CBN Push. Archived from the original on October 24, 2023.
  22. ^ "Melai Cantiveros on Emmy nomination of Impostor: "Yung Emmy Awards, pangmayaman daw yun, e. Yung sa abroad daw yun, e."". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  23. ^ "Kapamilya drama gets Emmy nomination". www.philstar.com. October 6, 2011. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  24. ^ "Sa 'Yo Lamang and Sigwa lead nominations at the 27th Star Awards for Movies". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  25. ^ "Jodi, JM lead Kapamilya winners in PMPC Star Awards for TV". ABS-CBN News. January 29, 2023. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  26. ^ "34th Star Awards for Television nominees bared". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  27. ^ Villano, Alexa (October 14, 2019). "LIST: Winners, PMPC Star Awards for Television 2019". RAPPLER. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  28. ^ "32nd Star Awards for TV winners revealed; ASAP joins MMK, Eat Bulaga, Bubble Gang in Hall of Fame". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  29. ^ "31st Star Awards for TV nominees revealed; JoshLia, JakBie to receive special awards". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  30. ^ Villano, Alexa (October 24, 2016). "LIST: Winners, PMPC Star Awards 2016 – television". RAPPLER. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  31. ^ "28th PMPC Star Awards for TV And the winners are..." www.philstar.com. November 25, 2014. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
  32. ^ "24th Star Awards for Television nominees bared". PEP.ph. Retrieved October 24, 2023.
Preceded by Pinoy Big Brother
Big Winner

Succeeded by
Preceded by Pinoy Big Brother Regular Season
Big Winner

Succeeded by