No regrets, only joy and relief. This is how JC de Vera described his feeling now that he is formally out of GMA-7's fold and has become part of TV5's growing roster of non-exclusive talents.
Last night, March 17, at Mario's restaurant on Tomas Morato, Quezon City, JC met with PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) and other entertainment reporters for the first time since signing a three-year non-exclusive deal with the Novaliches-based network.
The young actor's contract with the Kapuso network expired last March 14. JC's manager, Annabelle Rama—who is still engaged in a legal battle against GMA-7 executive Wilma Galvante—opted instead to shop for another network.
"Mahirap umalis dun sa GMA, lalong-lalo na sila ang nag-mold sa akin, kumbaga doon ako lumaki. Nahirapan talaga ako mag-decide. Pero 'yon nga, one thing kung bakit ako nag-decide umalis talaga sa GMA is because 'yon nga 'yong problema namin ni Tita Annabelle kay Ma'am Wilma. Good timing lang din 'yong offer ng TV5 kasi mag-e-end talaga 'yong contract ko, so nagkasabay," explained JC, who is now being groomed by TV5 as its premiere matinee idol.
JC admitted that the existing problem between his manager and the GMA-7 lady executive had a direct effect on him, both personally and professionally.
"Actually relief pa nga 'yon para sa akin na nakalipat ako kasi parang ang bigat, e. Pag may ginagawa akong show sa GMA, parang ang bigat-bigat ng pakiramdam ko. So, 'yong nalaman ko na pinayagan na akong makalipat and nasa TV5 na ako, nagkaroon ako ng relief talaga, parang nawala 'yong bigat sa dibdib ko."
STILL RESPECTS MS. WILMA. JC's sudden departure from GMA-7 likewise abruptly ended his stint in the primetime series Panday Kids.
Although he prepared intensively for the said program, JC frankly revealed accepting and doing the project with a "heavy heart." Transferring to a new network said JC would provide his career a fresh start.
Six years with GMA-7 and the 24-year-old actor would rather take with him all the good memories than dwell on the fallout.
"Hindi naging madali para sa akin lalong-lalo na 'yong magpaalam kina Ma'am Annette [Gozon-Abrogar, GMA Films president] na siyang nagbigay sa akin ng magagandang projects, kasama na din 'yong mga directors, 'yong co-artists ko. Pero 'yon nga, kailangan kong mag-decide para sa sarili ko and kaya ko 'to ginawa for career growth para sa akin."
JC also has kind words for Ms. Galvante. The two were not able to amicably part ways after his decision to jump ship.
Dropping by Ms. Galvante's office or making a phone call to personally say goodbye isn't really necessary, JC feels.
"As long as 'yong respect ko para sa kanya nandoon pa, siguro hindi ko na kailangan magsalita. Hindi naman ako masamang tao para pagsalitaan siya ng masama," he said.
JC added, "Thankful pa rin naman ako kasi kahit paano naging mabait pa rin siya sa akin. 'Yon nga lang, nagkaroon sila ng problem ni Tita Annabelle and nadamay ako, obviously nadamay ako. Kumbaga 'yong galit ni Ma'am Wilma napupunta sa akin instead na kay Tita Annabelle, so sa akin nababato and sa mga alaga ni Tita Annabelle."