television industry

Philippine ‘hallyu’: ABS-CBN exports ‘Everybody Sing’

Isagani de Castro Jr.

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Philippine ‘hallyu’: ABS-CBN exports ‘Everybody Sing’

PINOY-MADE. ABS-CBN's 'Everybody Sing' can now be franchised in other countries, becoming the first Philippine-made music TV game show for foreign licensing.

'Everybody Sing' Facebook/ABS-CBN

Filipino-made 'Everybody Sing' can now be franchised in other countries. Philippine TV shows previously franchised are 'Eat Bulaga!' and 'It's Showtime,' among others.

MANILA, Philippines – The Philippines’ leading content provider ABS-CBN Corporation is exporting its singing game show, Everybody Sing.

The Lopez-led media and entertainment company has picked Türkiye-based Global Agency to represent it in franchising the first Philippine community singing television game show.

This means the Philippine-made show, hosted here by Filipino comedian Vice Ganda, can get various versions in the countries where it will be franchised, similar to foreign reality singing game shows like The Voice, American Idol, and The X Factor.

Global Agency, located in West Asia/Middle East where many Filipinos work, is representing ABS-CBN in countries outside of the US and Canada. ABS-CBN is exploring other possible partners in these two North American countries.

Everybody Sing is a music guessing game involving 50 members of a community – with the same job, same hobbies, or similar life experiences – seeking to win big prize money that will be shared by everybody. Among the communities that have joined the show in the Philippines are nurses, soldiers, flight attendants, and athletes.

One highlight of the game show is “the spirit of teamwork that is important in communities,” Global Agency said in a press release.

It’s the first time ABS-CBN has partnered with Global Agency, which distributes and licenses not just game shows but also television series. 

“We are delighted to be representing worldwide (except US and Canada) our brand new format Everybody Sing,” said Izzet Pinto, founder and chief executive officer of Global Agency. “Everybody Sing is a joyous celebration of music and its power to bring people together, as well as a showcase for the inspiring work and interests of the community groups within our societies. That’s why we think it will be in high demand.” 

Global Agency claims to be one of the world’s leading TV content distributors, with a portfolio of game shows such as Two of Us and television series like Red Roses.

Everybody Sing premiered in the Philippines in 2021 during the pandemic and aired on free TV channels A2Z and TV5. It was also shown on ABS-CBN’s Kapamilya Channel on cable television as well as online. It has had three seasons and 156 episodes so far, which can still be watched on ABS-CBN’s YouTube channel. 

The Philippine franchise won Best Asian Original Game Show in the 2023 Content Asia Awards, while Vice Ganda won Best Entertainment Program Host in the 2021 Asian Academy Creative Awards.

Philippine ‘hallyu’: ABS-CBN exports ‘Everybody Sing’
Philippine content

This is perhaps the first Philippine-made reality singing game show to be franchised and the third Philippine television show, excluding television drama series. The first two are the Philippines’ longest-running noon shows Eat Bulaga!, then produced by Television and Production Exponents Incorporated, and It’s Showtime of ABS-CBN. Eat Bulaga! now airs on TV5, while It’s Showtime also airs on GMA and sister channel GTV.

In 2012, Eat Bulaga! became the first Filipino television show to be franchised internationally. Eat Bulaga! Indonesia began airing in July 2012 and had a two-year run. 

In 2019, ABS-CBN signed a franchise deal with Indonesian television network MNC TV for It’s Showtime. The Indonesian It’s Showtime was launched in March that year with a live audience, complete with its theme song in Bahasa and Indonesians taking part in Filipino-created segments.

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ABS-CBN pivoted into becoming a content provider after the Duterte administration shuttered its free television and radio business in 2020. It now sells content to its former competitors as well as to various streaming platforms.

ABS-CBN has, for a long time now, been exporting its popular television dramas. Filipino celebrities Jericho Rosales and Kristine Hermosa, for instance, became household celebrities in Southeast Asian countries like Malaysia, Indonesia, and Singapore, as ABS-CBN’s Pangako Sa ‘Yo (The Promise), with subtitles, became a hit soap opera. The teleserye was also shown in Africa and China, and it got a Cambodian remake. Rosales was dubbed an “Asian drama king,” and Pangako Sa ‘Yo became ABS-CBN’s “most successfully distributed” teleserye worldwide.

The Philippines is making a push to grow its creative economy, similar to South Korea’s Hallyu or Korean wave.

In an interview with Rappler last May during the announcement of the sequel to the box-office hit Hello, Love, Goodbye, ABS-CBN Film Productions head Kriz Gazmen said Philippine content creators need big help from government, just like how it’s being done in South Korea.

“I really think it has a lot to do with government support, ‘yan ang nakikita ko talaga with how the [Korean] wave is. If you look at the Philippines, ang entertainment natin is just privately funded eh. Hindi katulad doon, kitang-kita mo, from music to movies, all of them enjoy so much government support. Kaya ang bilis nila nag-worldwide. Kita mo talaga ‘yung push ng government na ang ie-export natin talaga is our culture and our entertainment,” he said.

(I think it has a lot to do with government support. That’s how I see the Korean wave. If you look at the Philippines, our entertainment is just privately funded. It’s not like in Korea where you’ll see, from music to movies, all of them enjoy so much government support. That’s why they quickly went worldwide. You really see the push of the Korean government that what should be exported is culture and entertainment.)

In the first compilation of Philippine Creative Economy Satellite Accounts last March, the Philippine Statistics Authority said the country’s creative economy amounted to P1.72 trillion in 2023, contributing 7.1% to the gross domestic product.

“Creativity plays an important role in improving the economic performance of a country as it can attract potential investments and promote competitive advantage,” the PSA said. 

South Korea has been the model of other developing countries when it comes to expanding its creative economy. A survey by Korea’s Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism showed the content-based industry of South Korea generating $108 billion in sales, growing at 4.9% a year from 2016 to 2020.

Other major exporters of entertainment content are the US, China, Japan, and the United Kingdom. –

Free expression, copyright protection cited as factors for success of Korean Wave

Free expression, copyright protection cited as factors for success of Korean Wave

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Isagani de Castro Jr.

Before he joined Rappler as senior desk editor, Isagani de Castro Jr. was longest-serving editor in chief of ABS-CBN News online. He had reported for the investigative magazine Newsbreak, Asahi Shimbun Manila, and Business Day. He has written chapters for books on politics, international relations, and civil society.