Merino has been acting professionally since 2007. Merino began as an extra on the TV show Neighbours, but then later on gained featured roles on As the Bell Rings and as school bully Jake, in Jonathan M. Schiff’s The Elephant Princess. Merino also had a lead role in a VEA educational film. In 2008 Merino also starred in his first feature film My Year Without Sex as the role of Tyson, which premiered in 2009. In late 2008 Merino scored a recurring role in Steven Speilberg’s and Tom Hank’s mini series The Pacific. However, Neighbours remains as his first major debut on television as Simon Freedman.
Merino, won the role of 15 year old Simon after auditioning for a nation-wide competition, Dolly’s Search for Neighbours Next Big Stars. Merino won the competition alongside Chelsea Jones form Perth two be cast in the popular long time running soap. It is the second time Neighbours hosts this competition, after the success of Sam Clark and Adelaide Kane previous winners. Mauricio played a character 2 years younger than his real age.
Before winning his role on Neighbours, Mauricio was studying his Victorian Certificate of Education and left school and finished his year 12 studies on set whilst filming.
In Novembers 2008 issue of Dolly Magazine, Merino was featured on the front cover which Chelsea Jones which also contained a two page spread on both actors, and later was featured in various articles in TV Week.
In February’s 2009 Dolly Magazine Mauricio was voted as one of the 42 to-die-for dudes, which ranged from movie stars, pop guys and tv hot rods. Having only been on television for a few months, his role clearly establishes him as one of Australia’s newest popular faces.
Neighbours – Mauricio Merino Jr
Happy 25th Birthday Neighbours