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Big firsts, historic partnerships: Momentous events in PH entertainment industry in 2023

Rappler Entertainment Team

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Big firsts, historic partnerships: Momentous events in PH entertainment industry in 2023
From groundbreaking partnerships to major victories, here are the momentous events that took Philippine entertainment industry by storm this year

MANILA, Philippines –  While the past few years have always proven to be interesting in the world of Philippine entertainment, the events that transpired in 2023 alone might just be enough to top them all.

This year, we witnessed decades-long rivalries coming to an end, and a large-scale international awards show held in the country, among others.

Before we bid 2023 goodbye, let’s look back at the momentous events that took the country’s entertainment industry by storm this year.

GMA Network and ABS-CBN team up for teleserye
Big firsts, historic partnerships: Momentous events in PH entertainment industry in 2023

Talents from ABS-CBN and GMA Network joined forces for the teleserye Unbreak My Heart. The show starred Joshua Garcia, Gabbi Garcia, Richard Yap, Jodi Sta. Maria, Eula Valdes, and Nikki Valdez, among others.

Unbreak My Heart follows Rose (Jodi Sta. Maria) and her quest to find her estranged husband and the long-lost daughter she had no choice but to abandon. Rose finds herself in a love affair with Renz (Joshua Garcia), who later sparks romance with Alex (Gabbi Garcia) – pulling the three of them into a complicated love triangle. Matt (Richard Yap) is thrown into the mix when he begins to involve himself in the three individuals to protect his own family. 

The series began streaming on Viu on May 29 and ended its 100-episode run on November 16.

Dolly de Leon is invited to join The Academy

Filipino actress Dolly de Leon was invited to join the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, the group that awards the Oscars.

“My dream has always been clear to me – to work with artists I admire and respect. This was never part of the plan. So, did I ever dream of this to happen? No. Did I ever even wish for it to happen? No. Because I never thought it could. But it’s happened and it’s a step closer to the goal and gives many others like me HOPE,” she wrote in an Instagram post sharing the news. 

The actress first received international acclaim in 2022 after she took home the Best Supporting Performer award at the 2022 Los Angeles Films Critics Association Awards for her role as Abigail, a toilet cleaner, in the film Triangle of Sadness. She was also nominated for the same role at the 27th Satellite Awards, the Golden Globes, and the British Academy Film Awards (BAFTA). 

ABS-CBN’s ‘It’s Showtime’ airs on GTV
Big firsts, historic partnerships: Momentous events in PH entertainment industry in 2023

Putting their decades-long rivalry aside, ABS-CBN and GMA Network forged a deal to air the former’s hit noontime show It’s Showtime on the latter’s free-to-air channel GTV. The two firms formalized the deal in a contract signing ceremony on June 29, led by executives from ABS-CBN and GMA. 

It’s Showtime began airing on GTV on July 1. 

‘EAT’ vs. ‘Eat Bulaga!’

On May 31, Eat Bulaga!’s main hosts Tito Sotto, Vic Sotto, and Joey de Leon (known collectively as TVJ), along with the noontime show’s other hosts, parted ways with its longtime producer, Television and Production Exponents Incorporated (TAPE), over alleged internal conflicts between TAPE’s owner and TVJ on how to run the show. 

TVJ later found a new home in TV5 on July 1 for Eat Bulaga! – which they renamed to E.A.T. – allowing the world to witness the show and its hosts’ historic transition from being Kapusos for the last three decades to now being Kapatids

Despite this move, however, GMA Network and TAPE still continued to air new episodes of Eat Bulaga! under the same name – just with a new set of hosts, consisting of Paolo Contis, Isko Moreno, Betong Sumaya, Kimpoy Feliciano, Cassy and Mavy Legaspi, Buboy Villar, and Alexa Miro. 

Given this, TVJ filed a complaint against TAPE and GMA Network for alleged “copyright infringement and unfair competition.”

On December 4, TVJ won its trademark dispute against TAPE for the production company’s registration of the Eat Bulaga and EB trademarks. The Intellectual Property Office of the Philippines ordered TAPE’s trademark registrations for merchandise-related uses cancelled.

Sharon Cuneta and Gabby Concepcion reunite in ‘Dear Heart’ concert
Big firsts, historic partnerships: Momentous events in PH entertainment industry in 2023

Former on-screen and off-screen partners Sharon Cuneta and Gabby Concepcion held their Dear Heart concert to mark their first major reunion together after last starring in the 1992 film Tayong Dalawa. 

The ex-couple’s daughter KC Concepcion also shared the stage with them, making for a heartwarming family reunion. It was extra special as it was the first time Sharon saw KC again after nine months. 

The concerts were held at the SM Mall of Asia Arena in Pasay City on October 27, Okada Manila in Parañaque on October 30, and the Nustar Convention Center in Cebu on November 17. 

KathNiel breakup

KathNiel, the biggest reel-to-real love team in the country, officially split up in late November after over 11 years of being together. Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla announced their breakup on their own Instagram accounts after rumors of their separation had been circulating on social media for several months. 

The ex-couple still made several public appearances together post-breakup, such as the ABS-CBN Christmas Special 2023 and the AAA, where they each took home the AAA Fabulous Award. 

After a months-long legal dispute with their former management, SB19 finally secured ownership of its group name and logo in December. 

“We formally announce that we have come to an amicable agreement with ShowBT Philippines Corp. through a fair and equitable resolution,” 1Z Entertainment wrote in its statement. 

In October, the five-member P-pop group established 1Z Entertainment, its own agency, with Pablo serving as the CEO. The group has operated as self-managed artists since then. 

Their former agency ShowBT had then barred them from using their group name and logo, which presumably led to the cancellation and postponement of several stops of their PAGTATAG! world tour. 

First international awards ceremony held in the Philippines

The Asia Artist Awards (AAA) was held in the Philippines for the very first time this year. The awards show is typically held in South Korea and has also been brought to Japan and Vietnam.

In its 2023 edition, numerous stars from Korea, Japan, China, and the Philippines graced the Philippine Arena in Bulacan on December 14 for the prestigious awards ceremony

Filipino actors and music acts like Ben&Ben, SB19, HORI7ON, Melai Cantiveros-Francisco, Kathryn Bernardo, and Daniel Padilla even received awards of their own and were able to make all Filipinos proud that night during their acceptance speeches. 

‘Face 2 Face’ returns to TV5
Big firsts, historic partnerships: Momentous events in PH entertainment industry in 2023

TV5’s hit tabloid talk show Face 2 Face resumed action in May this year after nine years, with Karla Estrada and Alex Calleja as its new hosts.

Face 2 Face first aired in 2010 and was hosted by Amy Perez and Gelli de Belen until its last episode aired in 2013. It later rebranded into a new show called Face the People, which ran from 2013 to 2014. –

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