Yo soy Betty, la fea synopsis

Yo soy Betty, la fea (I am Betty, the ugly one) is a popular telenovela filmed in Colombia, written by Fernando Gaitán and produced between 1999 through 2001 by the Colombian network RCN (Radio Cadena Nacional). More than a dozen versions of the telenovela have been made in other countries. In the United States, both the comedy-drama hit Ugly Betty and Televisa program La Fea Más Bella are based on the Colombian soap opera.

Betty, la Fea re-aired on TeleFutura in January 2009. Eight years after the telenovela's original run, the highly anticipated return of the original version of Yo Soy Betty, La Fea delivered impressive ratings for the network, attracting over one million viewers, more than half a million of which were adults aged 18–49. In addition, the premiere episode doubled and in some cases nearly tripled its prior audience among all key demographics.

Due to the success of re-runs aired in the United States, in June 2009, Yo soy Betty, la fea re-aired in México on Canal de las Estrellas.

It is considered be the most popular telenovela of all time.

Synopsis:
Beatriz Aurora Pinzón Solano, Betty, is an unattractive but brilliant economist working as a secretary at a fictitious Colombian fashion empire, EcoModa. Betty constantly faces the scorn of EcoModa's attractive manager-owners but proves herself indispensable to EcoModa's new president, Armando Mendoza. She becomes Armando's accomplice in a clandestine scheme to save EcoModa from financial ruin and they become romantically involved.

Though she has a masters degree in finance and graduated at the top of her class, Betty has been unable to secure a job interview, because, she claims, her ugly photograph ruins her otherwise impressive résumé. After searching unsuccessfully for a job to match her education and experience, she applies for a position as the secretary to the president of EcoModa, a highly successful, trendy fashion manufacturer/retailer founded by two families, the Mendozas and the Valencias. She sends her résumé to EcoModa without a photograph, thus securing an interview.

Armando Mendoza, EcoModa's new president, is the smart, handsome, and well-educated son of the company's retired co-founder Roberto Mendoza. He is engaged to Marcela Valencia, an EcoModa executive and daughter of the deceased co-founder, Valencia. Armando is in search of a new secretary and first interviews Marcela's best friend, Patricia Fernández. He is reluctant to hire Patricia because he assumes that Marcela would want her to spy on him, given his reputation as a notorious womanizer. Armando then interviews Betty. While he is concerned about her "ugliness", he likes the idea that she could be his ally, rather than a spy. In order to please Marcela, Armando hires as his secretaries both Betty, the ugly but brilliant economist, and the very attractive but not so intelligent Patricia.

Since EcoModa is a fashion company primarily concerned with image and beauty, Patricia is seated in the lobby and Betty is seated in a stock room behind Armando's office. Nevertheless, Betty proves herself invaluable as she maneuvers effortlessly in the business and finance milieu, earning respect among industry insiders which would later become her close friends. Throughout the weeks, Betty falls in love with Armando but keeps her feelings a secret from him and everyone else. She is satisfied with the idea of Armando only needing her for work because she knows he would never need her for love.

Out of loyalty and love to Armando, she helps him launch a risky new business plan that could mean the downfall of EcoModa, but if successful, could bring the company back to firm financial standing. The business plan sets up a fake company, run in name by Betty, as a firm financial backer of EcoModa. The fake company prevents the banks from taking over EcoModa's stocks, primarily because of Betty's business savvy and financial contacts. Once the summer fashion line is released, EcoModa will be secure in their finances and the fake company can be dissolved. However, Armando asked Betty to fake the annual budget reports in order to keep the plan a secret from his family, not wanting to disappoint his family regarding his leadership skills as the new president of EcoModa. Betty reluctantly agrees to secretly help him and convinces her best friend, Nicolas Mora, to go along with it. EcoModa vice president (and Armando's best friend) Mario Calderon is the only other person at EcoModa that knows about the business plan. However, because of how the plan works, EcoModa has pretty much been sold (in paper) to the fake company, setting up Betty as the president and Nicolas as the vice president. Mario is concerned that Betty has the capability to keep EcoModa to herself and convinces Armando to romance Betty to keep her happy. Armando is sure that Betty could never be so devious, but when he thinks that Nicholas and Betty are a couple who are capable of getting away with the company, he begins to worry. Also because of how Armando used to mistreat Betty and how some of the employees would make fun of her looks (including him), he believed Betty would stay with the company. He decides to take Mario's advice and starts to romance Betty even though he is disgusted by the idea.

As the weeks pass by, Betty falls more in love with Armando. In turn, Armando starts seeing past the "ugliness" and sees the beautiful person Betty really is. He falls in love with Betty, but keeps his feelings secret from Mario, who constantly teases Armando about having to kiss the ugly duckling. Though Armando really is in love with Betty, he decides not to tell her about the horrible plan thinking that Betty wouldn't love him anymore if she knew. A couple of days before the budget meeting, Betty discovers letters from Mario to Armando describing details about the fake romance. Betty is devastated at how Armando could take advantage of her feelings and instead of confronting him, she decides to get revenge by first playing along with his game and then by exposing the truth of the secret business plan to his family at the meeting. Armando and Mario, clueless that Betty knows the truth, are shocked that Betty would turn on them at the meeting. The family (who are also stockholders) are pretty much informed that EcoModa is in financial ruin and that Betty is the new owner of the company. However, Betty reveals that the fake company was only set up to prevent EcoModa from going bankrupt and that she is handing back full ownership to the stockholders. Roberto Mendoza chastises Betty on her involvement in such a scheme, knowing her to be an honest woman, and Betty is escorted out of the building. Before she leaves, Armando confronts her, only to find out how much Betty was humiliated by his deception. Armando tries to tell Betty that he truly loves her, but she refuses to listen. As Betty is walking out, Marcela demands to know what Betty is carrying in a large plastic bag. Betty shows her the "trash" which is all the fake letters and gifts that Armando had given her. Exposing their relationship, Marcela is shocked and devastated by the news, but Betty explains that their relationship was fake and never out of love. Out of heart break, Marcela cancels the wedding and breaks up with Armando, everyone loses respect for him, and he is left emotionally lonely.

Hurt and heartbroken, Betty immediately takes a job as the assistant to a fashion icon who is in charge of the Miss Colombia Pageant. She runs to the airport to catch a flight to Cartagena. She asks her family not to tell anyone where she is, especially Armando. Betty is humiliated at how she let Armando fool her and how Roberto had to fire her, and decides to confide the whole truth to her new boss, Catalina, including her so-called romance with Armando.

Armando desperately wants to find Betty and convince her that he loves and needs her, but her family will not tell him how to find her. Armando must also deal with the fallout of the business situation EcoModa is now in. Armando is fired as president and his father comes out of retirement to take over the presidential duties. The attorney realizes that Betty did not correctly turn over the business back to the stockholders, therefore Betty and her fake company are still the owners of EcoModa, thus preventing the bank from seizing control. Knowing that the only way to save the company is to continue with the "business plan" until after the summer fashion line, the stockholders have no choice but to ask Betty to stay and run the company. The only problem is that they can't find Betty.

Meanwhile, Betty is surrounded by all the beautiful pageant ladies and has become fast friends with a gorgeous French photographer (Michele) who would later find interest in her. Catalina helps Betty come out of her shell and rather slowly helps Betty shed some of her ugliness. First she convinces Betty to accept an advance on her salary so that she can buy clothes that complement her figure better. Then, because they were going to a premiere, she took Betty to a hair stylist and asked them to give her a more modern cut. A few days later she is taken back to the hair stylist to have her unibrow and stache waxed out and she is fixed with make up. Catalina "accidentally" breaks her glasses and the new pair is much more suited to her face. It seems that Betty has shed her "ugliness" overnight and looks quite beautiful. But then Betty gets a call from her father saying that she needs to return to finish some business with EcoModa. Reluctantly, she returns home.

When she walks into EcoModa, nobody recognizes her. Everyone is quite shocked at her transformation. Roberto tells Betty about the financial situation they are in and asks Betty to help him save the company. Although hesitant about working at EcoModa again, Betty agrees, feeling some responsibility as to why they are in that situation. However, Betty didn't realize that she would actually have to be the president and run the company. Armando tries to tell Betty he loves her, but she doesn't believe him. Armando realizes that he has probably lost Betty and decides to give her some distance, so he leaves EcoModa.

Months later, the new fashion line is a success thanks to Betty's ideas of modeling her friends (the club of the ugly girls) and business savvy. Although Betty appears to be dating Michele who came to visit her, she still can't get over Armando. Michele offers Betty to move to Cartagena with her family to work and start a new life there. She is unsure whether to take the offer, mostly because she still has feelings for Armando. Once Armando returns, he becomes jealous of Betty and her new "boyfriend" and again expresses his love for her but she still doesn't believe him. Because of a very attractive friend that Armando had met after he left and brought back, Betty believes that she and Armando had had a sexual relationship together and continues to think that he has never changed. But the truth is Armando's attractive friend wanted a romantic relationship with him, but he kindly rejects her explaining that he is in love with Betty, she understands and they stay as very good friends.

Betty makes up her mind and takes the offer, she tells her friends she is leaving Bogotá and they are all devastated by the news. In order to keep Betty from moving, Armando decides to move away so that she can stay in Bogotá. Soon Betty's friends try convincing her that Armando really has changed, but she still cannot seem to believe it. When Marcela hears about Armando moving away, she decideds to tell Betty the truth about everything so that she can convince him to stay. Heart broken, Marcela leaves Ecomoda, with Patricia, accepting that she can never have Armando back. Because of Marcela, Betty realizes that Armando was in love with her for real and stops him from leaving. They both stay and run the company together and the two eventually marry.

The final scene shows Armando gushing over his new-born daughter, who is just as beautiful as Betty was when she was first born.

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