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New ABS-CBN-TV5 deal seen to reinvigorate battle for viewership

STAR CIRCUIT - Ricky Calderon - The Freeman

“The Baseball Player,” directed by Carlo Obispo, is one of the big winners at the awards night of the 18th Cinemalaya Independent Film Festival held at the Main Theater of the Cultural Center of the Philippines on Sunday, August 14.

It won Best Film, with Carlo also winning the Balanghai trophy for Best Screenplay and Best Editing for Zig Dulay.

The Best Actress award went to Max Eigenmann for “12 Weeks”, which tells the story of a 40-year-old woman who discovers she is pregnant after breaking up with her boyfriend and must decide whether she wants to be a mother or not.

Winning the Best Actor award is Tommy Alejandrino for “The Baseball Player” which is the story of a Moro soldier who aspires to be a baseball player amidst an all-out war.

Named Best Supporting Actress was Ruby Ruiz for “Ginhawa”, while Best Supporting Actor was Soliman Cruz for “Blue Room.”

“Blue Room” also won Best Director for  Ma-an L. Asuncion Dagnalan, as well as Special Jury Prize, Best Cinematography for Neil Daza, and Best Production Design for Marxie Maolen Fadul.

“12 Weeks,” directed by Anna Isabelle Matutina, won the NETPAC Award.

Other winners in the Full Length Category are Isha Abubakar for Best Original Musical Score for “Retirada,” Pepe Manikan for Best Sound Design for “Bula sa Langit”, and Audience Choice Award for TM Malones for “Kargo.”


Finally, it has been announced that ABS-CBN and TV5 signed an investment agreement, which will enable them to bring more quality programs to Filipinos and the rest of the world on free and pay TV, as well as online.

Through this deal, and the combination of the two companies’ technology and expertise in the broadcast industry, viewers can expect more program offerings top-billed by the talent pool from both networks.

When ABS-CBN lost its franchise in 2020, the Kapamilya Network focused on its digital transformation and in building partnerships, so it may continue to share its programs to a larger audience. This partnership with TV5 is the biggest it has cemented yet.

Early in April 2022, ABS-CBN signed a contract with GMA Network, allowing Star Cinema movies to be shown on the Kapuso channel.

Pre-pandemic, the Kapamilya and Kapuso networks’ rivalry brought out the best in all stations, with the major players always thinking of new ways to capture viewership and the interest of the public.

But since ABS-CBN lost its franchise, Filipino audiences who tune in on free TV now only have fewer programs to choose from — with GMA enjoying dominance without its main competitor.  For the past two years, it has taken a large part of the television audience share and advertising placements.

When it happened, media reported that the Philippine Competition Commission (PCC) said the absence of ABS-CBN created the concern that “the market will become less competitive.” With news about the TV5-ABS-CBN deal initially reported in the press, the PCC reminded the media giants to conduct due diligence to ensure compliance with the antitrust law.

With the new deal between ABS-CBN and TV5, the entertainment industry will be alive with more shows, more work, and more advertising opportunities. The industry will now see some good competition, which is a welcome development that even PCC can be happy about.

ABS-CBN’s partnership with TV5 aims to bring back the reinvigorating challenge of being the best storyteller in the Philippines. With their shared strengths and capabilities, the country’s powerhouse media companies will once again have to battle for viewership.

The partnership of the Kapamilya and Kapatid networks may help restore balance in the media industry and will result to more creative storylines from all camps, and more options for shows for the Filipino audience.

“In partnership with TV5, we look forward to reaching viewers both on owned platforms and through other broadcast partners, thereby enriching the Philippine creative industry. We hope the industry evolves from being highly competitive to increasingly collaborative, which benefits all stakeholders in the long run,” says ABS-CBN president and CEO Carlo Katigbak.

From competitors to business partners, ABS-CBN and TV5’s partnership promises a brand new beginning for both networks and truly exciting times for audiences worldwide.

Let’s hope there will be no hindrances or obstacles to this development. Let’s all hope for the best with the viewers’ interest in mind.

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