drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

MMK Turns 25

The longest-running drama anthology on Philippine television gets the silver treatment.

For older viewers, it is still known as ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’, but for the younger generation, it is now simply known as ‘MMK’. Regardless, the program that touched the lives of Filipinos here and around the world is still going strong, and just recently, it celebrated its 25th anniversary.

The very first episode of ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ was aired on May 15, 1991. The first episode, ‘Rubber Shoes’, starred Romnick Sarmenta, Vina Morales, Robert Arevalo, Hero Bautista and Ray Ventura, and it launched a tradition of reading letters through Charo Santos-Concio and naming episode titles after various objects, people or places.

From there, ‘MMK’ took off. The anthology became popular, earning numerous awards here and abroad, and it inspired more Filipinos to write stories of their own, each depicting their trials and tribulations in life.

In 1994, Star Cinema decided to produce a movie based on ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’. Released as one of the entries in that year’s Metro Manila Film Festival, it starred Richard Gomez, Aiko Melendez, Chin-Chin Gutierrez and Caridad Sanchez, among others.

In 2007, a radio program also based on ‘MMK’ began airing on DZMM, and earned similar praise as its television counterpart. Five years later, a rerun of classic ‘MMK’ episodes (titled ‘MMK Klasik’) also began to air on The Filipino Channel and on DZMM TeleRadyo.

Even though ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ has been on a roll since its first episode in 1991, rivals have tried to keep up with this long-running anthology. The most notable of these rivals was GMA’s ‘Magpakailanman’, which first aired in 2002 and has continued to air since (other than a four-year hiatus from 2008 to 2012).

Nevertheless, there is no doubt that ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ remains an iconic program to many Filipinos. And as it turned 25, more stories are about to unfold, with each of them maintaining a tradition of inspiration and dedication to all Filipinos.

Hosted by Charo Santos-Concio, ‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ airs every Saturday at 8:15 p.m*. on ABS-CBN.

*‘Maalaala Mo Kaya’ has been airing every Saturday night since 2008. The show originally aired every Wednesday, Thursday and then Friday night.

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entertainment, game show, Philippines, television, United States

Family Feud Moves to ABS-CBN

The Filipino franchise of ‘Family Feud’ is going Kapamilya.

Just recently, ABS-CBN announced that they will acquire the rights to produce and broadcast the hit game show ‘Family Feud’. The said game show is the latest in the Kapamilya network’s series of foreign franchise acquisitions dating back to 2005.

Soon after, it was revealed that Luis Manzano will host the said game show. Afterwards, he announced on the March 20 episode of ‘ASAP’ that the premiere date of ‘Family Feud’ will be on April 9, Saturday, and will air on weekends.

The Filipino franchise of ‘Family Feud’ joins a rare list of programs that were aired on three different networks. The original version, hosted by Ogie Alcasid, aired on ABC 5 (now TV5) from 2001-02, then the subsequent editions, hosted by Richard Gomez, Dingdong Dantes and Edu Manzano, aired on GMA from 2008-11.

In addition, ‘Family Feud’ is the third game show franchise to air on both ABC 5/TV5 and ABS-CBN. The others are ‘Wheel of Fortune’ and ‘The Price is Right’.

‘Family Feud’ on ABS-CBN will replace ‘Celebrity Playtime’, another game show hosted by Luis Manzano. Its timeslot is yet to be determined.

It will be interesting to see how ABS-CBN’s own take on ‘Family Feud’ will live up to the standards set by both ABC 5 and GMA. But considering the streak of success that ABS-CBN has enjoyed of late, getting some good viewership should not be a problem.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

Shortened Final Week Awaits Little Nanay, You’re My Home

Only five episodes remain for ‘Little Nanay’ and ‘You’re My Home’.

Both series will officially conclude this Holy Wednesday, March 23. Since Maunday Thursday and Good Friday will feature special religious-themed programming, the final week of the two shows will be uncharacteristically abbreviated than usual.

GMA’s ‘Little Nanay’ first aired on November 16, 2015, and will have run for 129 episodes by the time it ends. The series starred Kris Bernal, Chlaui Malayao, Nora Aunor and Eddie Garcia, among others.

‘Little Nanay’ was pitted against ‘Pangako Sa ‘Yo’ from the moment it premiered, but the series endured poor ratings against the KathNiel-starred drama. Not even a change of timeslot from January 11 onward helped change its fortunes, as they didn’t come close to the feats achieved by ‘FPJ’s Ang Probinsyano’.

On the other hand, ABS-CBN’s ‘You’re My Home’ first aired a week earlier, on November 9. The series, which starred Dawn Zulueta, Richard Gomez, Jessy Mendiola and JC de Vera, among others, will have a total of 136 episodes once it concludes.

‘You’re My Home’ was created essentially to take advantage of GMA’s weaker offerings during the late evening slot. While the series started slow, it has since earned respectable ratings, and helped consolidate the dominance of ABS-CBN during weekday primetime.

The conclusions of both ‘Little Nanay’ and ‘You’re My Home’ mark a rare occasion in which a drama series will end on Holy Wednesday. As mentioned earlier, regular programming on Maundy Thursday and Good Friday are set aside for religious-themed programs, hence the shorter final week.

That said, with only three episodes remaining before the Paschal Triduum kicks in, expect ‘Little Nanay’ and ‘You’re My Home’ to have a compelling conclusion. One can only hope that the two series will make a final impression as they enter the homestretch.

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drama, entertainment, Korea, Philippines, Taiwan, television

The Demise of Asianovelas on ABS-CBN

Once known for introducing F4 (above) and ‘Meteor Garden’ to Filipino audiences, ABS-CBN has effectively ceased its importation of Asianovelas since the middle of this year. (Photo credit: Meteor Garden ABS-CBN Official Facebook)

Asianovelas on ABS-CBN are now a thing of the past.

The premiere of the teleserye ‘You’re My Home’ last November 9 signaled the end of an era. Gone are the days when ABS-CBN usually reserves the final spot of their weekday afternoon and evening blocks for Asianovelas.

Now they are leaning more towards local programming in an effort to make use of their deep roster of talents. This makes sense, considering that ABS-CBN has the resources and the technology to produce their own programs.

The last Asianovelas aired on ABS-CBN were ‘Let’s Get Married’ and ‘My Lovely Girl’, whose final episodes were aired on June 19 of this year. When the recently-concluded ‘Pinoy Big Brother: 737’ premiered on the weekday slots three days later, many thought this was only a temporary break for Asianovelas on the network.

As it turned out, ABS-CBN has bigger plans in mind. With so many programs currently kept under wraps, management thought it was best to finally devote more time to locally-produced shows.

This led to the entry of more recent teleseryes such as ‘Ningning’, ‘Doble Kara’, ‘All of Me’, ‘Walang Iwanan’, and the aforementioned ‘You’re My Home’. A few other programs are still being planned, with a target date set for early next year.

Today, the Prime Tanghali, Kapamilya Gold and Primetime Bida blocks air a combined total of nine teleseryes. More than half of the network’s roster of contract artists are currently utilized in these teleseryes, ranging from child stars like ‘Ningning”s Jana Agoncillo to forty-somethings like ‘You’re My Home”s Richard Gomez and Dawn Zulueta.

ABS-CBN’s new path should benefit the network in the years to come. Having recently launched ABS-CBN HD, they now strive to take advantage of this new technology by committing more towards local programs, with the intent of broadcasting a purely Filipino programming lineup in the near future.

As for Asianovelas, it’s now GMA’s responsibility to continue airing them. After all, they still have Heart of Asia mornings to keep fans company.

Note: ‘Angel Wings’ is excluded here as it is considered a spiritual successor of the long-running anthology series ‘Chinese Variety Show’. Asianovelas only refer to imported series from Eastern Asian countries that air on weekdays.

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drama, entertainment, Philippines, television

You’re My Home Premieres Tonight

ABS-CBN is adding a fifth teleserye to Primetime Bida’s already formidable lineup.

The latest entry on the block is ‘You’re My Home’, the long-awaited project of Richard Gomez and Dawn Zulueta. The series was first planned two years ago, but numerous casting and story changes delayed the project until this year.

The original cast of ‘You’re My Home’ would have featured Richard and Dawn along with Enchong Dee, Shaina Magdayao, Iza Calzado, Cherry Pie Picache, Ella Cruz and Francis Magundayao. Instead, ABS-CBN decided to start over and rework the casting process.

With the exception of Richard and Dawn, the rest of the cast will now feature Jessy Mendiola, JC de Vera, Tonton Gutierrez, Paul Salas, Precious Lara Quigaman, Assunta De Rossi, Jobelle Salvador, Mika Dela Cruz, Minnie Aguilar, Peewee O’Hara, Belle Mariano, Bugoy Carino, and Raikko Mateo. The series will be directed by Jerry Lopez Sineneng and Star Creatives will handle production.

‘You’re My Home”s story will revolve around a family’s search for a lost son and the questions that surround his disappearance. The Fontanilla family of Grace (Jessy), Gabriel (Richard), Marian (Dawn) and Rahm (Sam) will have to find a way to not only look for their son Vince (Paul), but also fix a relationship that was ruined by his disappearance.

As mentioned earlier, ‘You’re My Home’ will be the network’s fifth teleserye on the Primetime Bida block. Counting the three other teleseryes on Kapamilya Gold and the late-morning series ‘Ningning’, ABS-CBN will now have a total of nine teleseryes every weekday, further demonstrating the network’s depth, creativity and financial capabilities.

It will be interesting to see if five teleseryes on primetime will translate to better ratings. ‘You’re My Home’ may be a can’t miss, but whether or not it will whet viewers’ appetites in the late-evening remains to be seen.

‘You’re My Home’ premieres tonight after ‘On the Wings of Love’ on ABS-CBN’s Primetime Bida.

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drama, entertainment, fantasy, Philippines, television

In 100 Words: Inday Bote and Bridges of Love, Coming Soon

Summer gets closer with a pair of new teleseryes coming soon on ABS-CBN.

Expected to air on Primetime Bida within a few weeks, the two new teleseryes will be:

Bridges of Love – starring Maja Salvador, Jericho Rosales and Paulo Avelino. John Lloyd Cruz and Xian Lim were originally cast in the upcoming series before backing out for various reasons.

Inday Bote – starring Alex Gonzaga, Matteo Guidicelli, Kean Cipriano, Izzy Canillo and Alonzo Muhlach. Adopted from the 1985 film starring Maricel Soriano, William Martinez, Richard Gomez and Charito Solis.

The two teleseryes are expected to replace ‘Two Wives’ and ‘Bagito’ respectively. More details will come in future articles, so stay put.

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