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'May franchise kami kasi we pay our taxes': GMA's Doctolero reacts to ABS-CBN director's 'basura' remark

Kathleen A. Llemit - Philstar.com
'May franchise kami kasi we pay our taxes': GMA's Doctolero reacts to ABS-CBN director's 'basura' remark
From left: GMA headwriter and creative consultant Suzette Doctolero; ABS-CBN director Andoy Ranay
Suzette Doctolero via Facebook; Andoy Ranay via Instagram

MANILA, Philippines (Updated: July 15, 2021, 11:00 a.m.) — "We're not yet world-class."

This is the gist of GMA headwriter and creative consultant Suzette Doctolero's lengthy posts on her Facebook account in relation to the "world-class" issue raised by ABS-CBN director Andoy Ranay.

Yesterday, Doctolero said she had to address the claim after trying to remain mum for several days when the issue broke out.

"Sa totoo lang, at pagpapaka-totoo lang, hindi pa natin (lahat ng network, walang prangkisa at meron) naaabot ang world-class. Ang babaw ng pamantayan kung world-class na ang taguri sa mga show na pinroduced abroad (gamit allegedly ang loan na di binayaran daw! Daw ha!) pero same same na kwento. Boy meets girl eklavu. Tsk. Hindi world-class yun. Magaling lang sa promo, at pinaniniwala kayo na sila ay world-class pero same same content at molde," Doctolero wrote in one of the three related posts.

She presented her argument about being world-class as not limited to love stories partly shot in exotic places abroad.

World-class, she said, is about showcasing culture and making the audience feel part of that culture. She cited works from Thailand and South Korea as perfect examples.

"Ang world class, kapag itinampok mo ang kwento, kultura at karanasang Pinoy, pero universal pa rin ang tema, kaya makaka-relate ang mga banyaga. For example: Korean ts, at humahabol na ang Thailand. Maski naman ang Indian (sic) ay may Bollywood na talagang ang pagkakakilanlan ay sa kanila," she argued.

Doctolero continued by posing a question on which Filipino series classifies as world-class but features the undeniable Filipino identity.

She said that many Filipino shows are inspired by Western concepts and are geared more toward entertainment, not necessarily cultivating the Filipino culture and experience to the international audience.

She again raised the more popular genre of love stories shot abroad and later marketed as world-class.

"Pansinin na iisa ang molde ng mga show. Bidang breadwinner na mula sa mahirap na pamilya pero masaya sila kahit poor. Chummy family, Brady Bunch concept. Tapos mame-meet ang isang guy o girl na mayaman. Same same. Iba-iba lang ang location. Baguio, Manila, Italy, Amerika, Timbukto, tralala.  Pero same kwento. Same problema. Malaki lang ang mga artista. Pero pwede nga itong isulat na nakapikit. Haha," she wrote in a separate post, citing the 1970s American sitcom, "Brady Bunch," which tells the story of a blended family who also stays positive amid challenges that come their way.  

The GMA headwriter said that they do not claim to be world-class because they are aware that they still have a lot of room for improvement.

"Why? Kasi content is king. Pero wala kaming claim na world-class kami kasi alam namin na marami pang dapat gawin at ayusin at babaguhin. Ang sinasabi ko lang: hindi po kami ang totoong basura. And yes, may franchise kami.  Kasi we pay our taxes... at yun ang totoong may class," she wrote.

Doctolero reiterated her earlier stand that the creatives in the industry should level up.

"Hanggang diyan pa lang tayo e ‘no? Hanggang sa pang-aliw pa lang. Wala pa tayo roon sa inilalako natin ang kultura’t eksperyensang Pinoy sa pandaigdigang market," Doctolero said.  

In the end, Doctolero believes that it takes more than the local showbiz industry to work on achieving that world-class status. Government aid is still needed for it to happen.

"Mahirap pa kasing gawin ang world domination este pa world-class (yung totoong world-class ha, hindi promo). Kinakailangan rin kasi ang napakalaking government support and initiative para ma-achieve ang totoong world-class. Hindi pwedeng hindi. Kailngan magtulungan ang government at entertainment industry para sa world-class goal. Kaya hinay-hinay sa pagda-down sa iba at pagyayabang. Malayo pa tayong lahat," she stressed.

RELATED: ABS-CBN director on network loyalty: 'Aanhin ang franchise kung basura ang trabaho?'

During a Senate hearing last year, representatives from the Bureau of Internal Revenue and the Securities and Exchange Commission affirmed that ABS-CBN paid its taxes regularly and did not violate any corporate laws for the past years.

Both government agencies said the network has been compliant with regulations, contrary to allegations lodged against the embattled media giant.

READ: Does ABS-CBN have tax deficiencies, unpaid debts?

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