Born Mara Hautea Schnittka on March 19, 1995 in Pandacan, Manila, young actress Julia Montes was raised by her deaf mother Gemma Hautea and grandmother, Flory Hautea. Her German father, Martin Schnittka, left her when she was just a baby.
Julia made several TV commercials when she was young and was then cast in a number of GMA-7 shows like Sana Ikaw Na Nga and Magpakailanman. She started getting big breaks when she auditioned and was accepted for the ABS-CBN’s teleserye Hiram and the kiddie show Goin’ Bulilit. Soon after, she worked on other notable kapamilya shows such as Maalaala mo Kaya, I Love Betty La Fea, Ligaw na Bulaklak, Gimik 2010, and Katorse.
Her biggest break came when she was cast as Clara Del Valle/David in the remake of one of the most well-loved Philippine Telenovelas, Mara Clara, opposite Kathryn Bernardo’s Mara. Just like its original version, which starred Judy Ann Santos and Gladys Reyes, the rehashed 2010 version also reached phenomenal success. Her role as the self-indulgent brat Clara instantly catapulted her to fame and made her one of the most promising young actresses of her generation.
She then worked on other ABS-CBN shows including the teen oriented programs Shoutout! and Growing Up. She also starred in several films for Star Cinema including Way Back Home and The Reunion.
In 2012, Julia starred in another phenomenal hit soap, Walang Hanggan, opposite Coco Martin together with a formidable cast which includes Richard Gomez, Dawn Zulueta, Susan Roces, Helen Gamboa, Paolo Avelino, Melissa Ricks and Joem Bascon.
The following year, she top-billed the teleserye Muling Buksan Ang Puso, alongside Enrique Gil, Enchong Dee, Susan Roces, Cherie Gil and Agot Isidro. She is slated to star in the period drama Ikaw Lamang with Coco Martin, Kim Chiu and Jake Cuevas, which is set to premier in March 2014.