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Entertainment

Wowowin experience is now a mobile game

FUNFARE - Ricky Lo - The Philippine Star
Wowowin experience is now a mobile game
Willie Revillame and Jyotirmoy Saha (August Media Holdings CEO) shake hands after closing the Wil To Play deal.

Why did Willie Revillame make a “turn-around” flight to Singapore over the weekend on his own private plane?

Now it can be told: he went there to sign a partnership deal with entertainment companies Synergy88 (Philippines) and August Media Holdings (Singapore) to develop his own set of casual games called Wil To Play that will extend Filipinos’ Wowowin experience on mobile.

The contract signing was done last July 28 at the Salt Grill & Sky Bar in Ion Orchard Mall.

Willie has been training to be a pilot and can now fly a chopper (also his own) around Metro Manila to avoid traffic, but another pilot handled the flight to Singapore and back.

Asked what the game is all about, Willie told The STAR, “It’s like an extension of Wowowin, a 24-hour giving service to fulfill the dreams of less fortunate people. You play and you win, that’s it. You don’t have to go to GMA. You just have to stay at home. Wherever you are in the world, you can play Wil To Play.”

Willie and his likeness and, right, showing the game’s app available on Jan. 27, 2020, Willie’s birthday

Wil To Play is the banner offering of Synergy88 and August Media Holdings’ upcoming mobile platform, which allows Filipinos to win rewards and prizes by playing different casual games. According to August Media Holdings CEO Jyotirmoy Saha, Willie is the perfect choice to be the face of their soon-to-be launched game platform, the first Filipino to be so honored and the second celebrity “gamer” after Jackie Chan.    

“When we were discussing that we need to create a game for the mass market and the game service for the mass market,” said Jyotirmoy, “it was very clear that we need a personality associated with it and who represents the games of the mass market and there was no other better person than Willie Revillame.”

“He’s the expert in making a lot of people happy by changing their lives. So, we partnered with him for the better reach of the talent and the service that we could do with the Filipino people,” added Bernard Chong, Synergy88 director and founder.

When asked what to expect with Wil To Play, Synergy88 COO and co-founder Jackeline Chua said it’s definitely going to be a fun and exciting experience for the whole family with big prizes at stake.

At the contract signing, from left: Elizabeth Estrada (Wil To Play brand and business development head), Bernard Chong (Synergy88 director and founder), Saha, Willie, Jackeline Chua (Synergy88 COO/co-founder) and lawyer Ferdinand Domingo.

“Wil To Play has very easy and very exciting casual games that everyone in the family can enjoy,” added Chua. “We actually drew inspiration from Filipinos’ favorite past-time places such as amusement parks and arcades where they play to earn tickets to be able to claim prizes. The major difference here though is that they will be playing not just to win small items or stuffed animals, but they can actually win grocery packages, brand-new cars, and even a house and lot.”

Wil To Play will be available for download on Google Play and App Store on Jan. 27 next year, coinciding with Willie’s birthday. 

Synergy88 and Singapore’s August Media Holdings have always been partners in bringing quality film and interactive entertainment to its audiences. Aside from their co-produced animations distributed in different parts of the world, the two companies are also behind Barangay 143, the first Filipino animé series on Philippine television aired on GMA. They are also set to release their own video-on-demand and reading platforms for Filipinos.

But before Wil To Play, Willie will attend to a major renovation of the Wowowin studio starting on Aug. 15 when he renews his annual contract with GMA. The whole job will make Willie P30M “poorer.” Willie spent almost the same amount for the construction of his studio first at the former Delta Theater and then on Kalayaan Avenue, also in Quezon City.

Willie was also joined by his Wowowin staff led by co-hosts Herlene ‘Sexy Hipon’ Budol, Elaine Timbol and Almira Teng. They were flown to Singapore by Willie’s private plane.

“Anything for the sake of my followers who are mostly from the masses,” Willie told The STAR. “Para sa kasayahan ng Wowowin followers,” added Willie who knows the feel of the masa because he also rose from humble beginnings, the “feel” that hosts of other game shows don’t have.

According to inside sources, aside from more and bigger prizes, part of the “new” Wowowin is the extension of the show until Saturday, making it a whole-week experience.

Okay, expect more jackets to be given away to the studio audience.

(E-mail reactions at rickylophilstar@gmail.com. For more updates, photos and videos, visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on Instagram @therealrickylo.)

AUGUST MEDIA HOLDINGS CEO WILLIE REVILLAME
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