Judy Ann Santos says that her prime-time series, Starla, is originally intended to run for one season only.
This is her response to people who ask why the ABS-CBN show has to end on its 14th week even though it is performing well in the ratings game.
During the January 6 finale press conference of Starla, Judy Ann was asked by columnist Jun Lalin about her show's limited run.
Judy Ann says, "Wala naman, wala namang ganung limitations with the contract.
"It's just that when they presented Starla to me, talagang one season lang siya.
"At that time kasi, parang napapagod na yung mga tao sa sobrang mahahabang teleserye."
Personally, Judy Ann prefers her teleseryes to only have a one-season run and end with high ratings rather than getting extended and losing its viewers.
She explains, "Di ba, kapag huma-highlight na tapos in-extend, bababa, bababa, tapos mahirap na siyang iakyat ulit, which nangyari rin sa akin a lot of times.
"So, when they presented Starla to me, aaminin ko naman na sinabi kong, 'One season lang ba talaga ito?'
"Kasi kapag halimbawang bumababa yung rating ng teleserye, ang bagsak naman noon, hindi naman sa istorya, sa artista, e."
Judy Ann referenced her 1992 teleserye, Mara Clara, when she asked if Starla would have elements involving a "diary and kwintas (necklace)."
In Mara Clara, which ran for five years, Judy Ann's Mara character was searching for an important diary and necklace that could reveal her true identity.
Judy Ann quips, "Tinanong ko kung may diary at kwintas. Wala, star lang!"
Going back to Starla, the 41-year-old actress says, "Okay na ako. Hanggang doon lang siya naka-focus.
"Though marami pa naman talagang pwedeng gawin with the story, but ang ganda na kasi ng latag, e.
"Noong pag-present pa lang sa akin, buo na yung istorya, may ending na talaga siya.
"Hindi siya cliffhanger na bahala na, titignan natin kung ano magiging gusto ng mga tao."
Starla premiered on ABS-CBN's Primetime Bida on October 7, 2019. The show will air its final episode this Friday, January 10.
During the press conference, PEP.ph (Philippine Entertainment Portal) asked Judy Ann if she still wants to do teleseryes.
This is why Judy Ann and her former leading man, Piolo, are unlikely to reunite for a television drama.
Judy Ann, dubbed as ABS-CBN's Queen of Pinoy Soap Operas, says she won't stop doing teleseryes. However, she did mention that she has one condition.
She admits, "Hindi ko na lang talaga kayang gumawa ng soap na pang limang taon.
"Yung ganun katagal? Parang puputok yung bahay bata ko siguro noon, kahit hindi ako buntis!"
Judy Ann also believes that viewers' preferences regarding soap operas have already changed. For this reason, she thinks very long teleseryes might not work anymore.
She points out, "At saka sa attitude ng audience ngayon, madali na silang naiinip.
"And, of course, for my own personal reason, you spend a lot of time in tapings and shootings when you're doing a teleserye. You don't get to spend much time with your family anymore.
"Para sa akin, maiksi ang buhay. Anything can happen kahit napaka-healthy mo. Hindi mo alam kung ano yung pwede mangyari sa 'yo bukas, sa susunod na araw.
"Yung iba nga, nakatayo lang, nababagsakan pa ng kung ano pa man. I wanna live my life on how I want it to be.
"For the longest time, I've been a very obedient and professional actor at that. Kaya ko siyang sabihin kasi alam kong ganun ako magtrabaho.
"I've given not just half of my life in show business. My life is an open book. It's high time to give myself a priority and my family a priority."
This 2020, Judy Ann won't be seen in teleseryes anymore as she already said yes to doing two movies.
She also prefers to have a six-month lead time to give her enough time to prepare for a show.