Weigh in on GMA Network’s triumphs and upcoming projects

Bea Alonzo

As mentioned in our article yesterday about the GMA Network Thanksgiving Gala, there were as many stars as actors. ‘New recruits’ Bea Alonzo and former screen partner John Lloyd Cruz added the superstar shine to the party at Shangri-La The Fort.

So what can we expect from the company in the coming seasons?

To tap into the celebratory mood of the evening, we asked select senior executives from various departments to take stock of the network’s triumphs over the past 72 years as they move forward with plans and innovations to sustain the best-selling GMA brand.

Indeed, the coming seasons promise to be exciting for theatergoers looking for new concepts and story ideas. Entertainment Group senior vice president Lilybeth G. Rasonable told us that GMA’s drama department has always pushed the boundaries of the teleserye format and continues to do so.

“Our creative culture, allowing our talents to play to their strengths and sensitivities, gives the network an advantage in terms of innovation,” she underlined. “We have in our future list a show that features the literary treasures of Jose Rizal, ‘Noli Me Tangere’ and ‘El Filibusterismo.’ There’s a new show exploring the world of competitive figure skating. We’re also putting together high-level time-loop material. After the success of our first ‘suspenserye’, we have a bigger show in development in the same genre.

“While all of the aforementioned projects are original concepts from local GMA creators, we continue to seek out popular IPs for adaptation in the Philippines. Part of our upcoming lineup includes adapted productions, such as “Start Up Philippines” and “ Luv Is,” which feature beloved Wattpad titles.

International co-production

“There is also the international co-production between GMA and Seoul Broadcasting System, which is the Philippine adaptation of the Korean game show “Running Man,” which will be released in September. Not only was the entire season of the program shot in South Korea, but this is the first time that GMA has collaborated with a Korean production team to create and produce a program. Thanks to the exchange of knowledge and experiences for the two networks, new approaches to television production can be taken not only for “Running Man”, but also for other future productions.

Gigi Santiago-Lara (right) with (left to right) John Lloyd Cruz, Joey Abacan and Alden Richards

The network creates experiences that take into account the needs and circumstances of viewers, Lilibeth pointed out. “As far as the pandemic is concerned, we are not off the hook yet. So we try to give viewers a sense of hope and normality in the programs we create. We try to help them through the “new normal” that we all have to live with.

“For example, in our new daily variety game program, ‘Tiktoclock’, we aim to bring back the feeling of barkadahan and a sense of community with Kuya Kim Atienza, Pokwang and Rabiya Mateo. The same goes for our programs of the weekend, “All-Out Sundays” and “Sarap ‘Di Ba”, where we encourage camaraderie, positivity and family. In “Farm to Fork”, we show how food can reflect viable, educational and self-sufficient alternative lifestyles.

“For almost three years since the start of the pandemic, we have been operating in a box; a controlled environment where we have struggled to adapt and rely on available resources to be able to continue or approach the same standards of entertainment excellence that have been so much of GMA’s history over the last 72 years. As we slowly emerge from this box, we are better equipped to meet the challenges ahead.

“Our shows continue to reach Filipinos around the world through GMA Pinoy TV. We do the same with Regional TV. Our shows will reflect trends and meet audience demand for shows that are truly entertaining, wholesome and meaningful.

Helping to execute the aforementioned ideas are stars and personalities that are as exciting as they are believable. This is where talent development becomes crucial.

character development

What kind of “stars” does the company want to develop in the years to come?

As Gigi Santiago-Lara, Senior Assistant Vice President for Alternative Productions, noted in yesterday’s article, a person’s character is just as important as their appearance or talent. “We want to develop stars who are not just beautiful or talented. Equally important is developing their mindset to have a strong work ethic and a strong sense of professionalism, as well as a willingness to “pay it forward” to young artists.

“We are fortunate to have established artists who are willing to share their ideas and experiences and how much they appreciate the support they receive from their fans, colleagues and home network.”

When asked who she considers their greatest accomplishments, Gigi said, “We consider many of our artists’ accomplishments. Artists such as Alden Richards, Julie Anne San Jose, Barbie Forteza, Sanya Lopez, Gabbi Garcia, Bianca Umali, Ruru Madrid, Miguel Tanfelix and Ken Chan headline many major network projects.

“We also have established artists who grew up with Sparkle over the years, such as Heart Evangelista, Rayver Cruz, Kylie Padilla, Andrea Torres, Max Collins, Rocco Nacino, Mark Herras and Benjamin Alves.”

On what she considered to be the network’s greatest strengths, Angel Javier Cruz, Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Communications, said, “Its strengths are crystallized in its mission, culture and leadership. Integrity is in our DNA. Our slogan, ‘Walang Kinikilingan, Walang Pinoprotektahan, Walang Kasinungalingan. Serbisyong Totoo Lamang,” is not just something our news anchors broadcast on the air, it is part of our moral fabric. It permeates the stories we make, the decisions we make, and the pleas we stand for.

For Angel, the company’s vision and values ​​have also helped shape its culture. “When you walk into GMA, walk into the studios, or meet a Kapuso on Zoom, you can feel a culture of harmony and camaraderie,” she explained. “We are as diverse as we are unique, yet we all work together. Another quiet strength of the network is leadership by example.

“Turning talents into stars was a challenge many have seen in the past. But with the birth of Sparkle comes a vibrant group of artists, backed by the masters of stardom. In the years to come, they are poised to to become the biggest and brightest stars in the show biz galaxy.

Angel Javier Cruz (right) with Mark Reyes V, Véronique del Rosario- Corpus of Viva Artists Agency, Kit Villanueva-Zapata and Dominic Zapata

Angel Javier Cruz (right) with Mark Reyes V, Veronique del Rosario of Viva Artists Agency-
Corpus, Kit Villanueva-Zapata and Dominic Zapata

You can’t talk about the strengths of the company without also mentioning GMA’s strong and reliable information and public affairs team.

“GMA News and Public Affairs is known for its credibility,” said Marissa L. Flores, a consultant for the GMA News and Public Affairs group, when asked what she thinks sets it apart. “Its trusted team of presenters, reporters and producers take the news agency’s slogan to heart, ensuring its reporting is fair, accurate and unbiased.

“It is also known for the diversity of programs that provide relevant information to our audience – from news bulletins led by the flagship program ’24 Oras’ and ‘Kapuso Mo, Jessica Soho’ (KMJS) to a whole portfolio of documentaries , talk shows, magazine programs, and even scripted anthologies and drama series (like “Lolong”), all designed to engage and inform audiences, he has been a consistent innovator in the digital sphere.

As streaming and new media become stronger and more visible than ever, how will the network remain relevant and competitive over the next decade?

Always favorite TV

“We don’t see television losing its influence anytime soon,” joked Marissa. “’24 Oras’ airs nightly on the platform of your choice, on the GMA News Online website, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and even TikTok. Despite this, data shows that people would still watch it on TV if it was available.

“But it goes beyond the news. One of the country’s most popular television shows, KMJS, is also the most popular on Facebook, with 28 million followers.

Lilibeth G. Rasonable (right) with

Lilibeth G. Rasonable (right) with “Couple of the Night” Dingdong Dantes and Marian Rivera

“With all the issues related to online disinformation, we see the need to ensure that Filipinos here and around the world can access news and information they can trust. Our newscasts are broadcast live for Filipino viewers, while overseas Filipinos can still watch their Express versions on our website and YouTube channel.

“And we continue to work on it. We have a digital video lab that is constantly working on new formats for young viewers. We are adopting new platforms to reach them. The medium may change, but our team is committed to maintaining the trust of our viewers with quality journalism. INQ

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Kimberly B. Nguyen