In 2003, I took a chance and sent my resume to ABS-CBN’s film production company, Star Cinema. All I knew was that I wanted to direct someday. I could’ve trodden other paths, but I chose the path that led to ABS-CBN.

It was in ABS-CBN that I met the many mentors who helped me discover my creative myself. I owe Ricky Lee, Malou Santos and Inang (Olive Lamasan) my audacity to create. I never truly believed I could write until they took me under their auspices.

In 2004, after that first workshop with Sir Ricky, I became a CDG member under Tammy Bejerano-Dinopol. Together with Amor Olaguer, they taught me to raise the story above all. These mentors made me realise that what I actually dreamed to be was a storyteller.

In 2005, I got to co-write with Moira Lang, who inspired me not only with her brilliance, but most especially her generosity. I learned how to be unbridled, and how to collaborate.

In 2006, Star Cinema produced my first ever screenplay, YOU ARE THE ONE.

In 2007, after they made me a contract writer, they also asked me to mentor the new generation of CDG members that came after me. It was the start of my other journey as an educator.

In 2008, they produced my screenplay, A VERY SPECIAL LOVE, forever linking me to Laida and Miggy.

In 2012, after three years of studying overseas, Roda dela Cerna and Mel Mendoza-Del Rosario welcomed me to MMK, my first show on television. This was the start of my career as a director. MMK proclaimed itself “Ang Tahanan Mo” to every Filipino, but it also became my home professionally. Since then, through “The Killer Bride,” “Ipaglaban Mo,” and “A Soldier’s Heart,” I have been working with the most impressive group of people one could ever collaborate with in television.

ABS-CBN is a loss not just because of the 11,000 jobs it provides and the taxes it pays.

It is a loss not just because it is a leading and reliable source of news and information.

It is a loss not just because of the public service it provides.

To lose ABS-CBN is to lose a home for the creative Filipino and their art.

Anyone whoever dreamed of telling stories for film and television have looked to ABS-CBN for opportunity or inspiration. Even those who never worked here, or never liked any of its shows, cannot deny its invaluable contribution to Philippine popular culture. ABS-CBN helped shape the contemporary Filipino’s sense of self.

Today, we go to Congress again to justify why we deserve another franchise.

Friends, I ask you to please support ABS-CBN. Para sa napakaraming katulad ko, kabuhayan ang katumbas nito. Para sa napakaraming katulad ko, sining namin ang katumbas nito.

Our company is not perfect, but it strives to be better everyday. I say this as someone who witnessed its evolution within its walls, all the way back during those years when it fumbled to do things right. The Philippine film and television industry has a long long way to go in securing the most basic rights and needs for workers, but ABS-CBN has been pioneering some of the best practices in media production in the country. Even workers from ABS-CBN’s competitors would attest to this. This is why despite the systemic flaws of the industry, ABS-CBN is perennially on the list of top companies to work for in the country and in Asia.

I assure you: THE MEDIA AND ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY IS MADE BETTER WITH ABS-CBN IN IT THAN WITHOUT IT.

Enough has been said about how ABS-CBN’s shutdown is a threat to press freedom. This is a fact. You need only to look only at how today’s journalists evade direct criticism of this President and his government to see the chilling effect of ABS-CBN’s and Rappler’s fate. Those who deny this are either blinded by their politics or simply do not value their freedoms.

Today, I ask you to support ABS-CBN as a show of support for the Creative industry as a whole. Please GET IN TOUCH WITH YOUR REPRESENTATIVES TO EXPRESS YOUR SUPPORT FOR ABS-CBN.

Ang simpleng pagkalampag sa social media sa mga Congressman ng inyong distrito para suportahan ang ABS-CBN franchise ay katumbas ng napakalaking suporta para sa aming mga manggagawa sa media. Wala pang dalawang minuto ito, sana ay magawa ninyong suportahan kami.

Ito ang aking pamilya.
#KapamilyaFOREVER

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