"...I humbly request the management, to release me as a talent of the network."
Ito ang pinakapunto ng sulat na ipinadala ng controversial TV host na si Willie Revillame sa pamunuan ng ABS-CBN, partikular na sa Chairman ng network na si Mr. Eugenio "Gabby" Lopez III at President nitong si Ms. Charo Santos-Concio.
Mahigit dalawang linggo na ang nakalilipas mula nang mag-indefinite leave si Willie sa noontime show ng ABS-CBN na Wowowee. Ito ay matapos ang kanyang pagbabanta noong May 4 episode ng show na magre-resign siya kung hindi tatanggalin ng management ang The Buzz segment host at radio host na si Jobert Sucaldito. Ayon kay Willie, halos isang taon na siyang "tinitira" ni Jobert sa radio program nitong Showbiz Mismo sa dzMM, na pag-aari rin ng Kapamilya network. (CLICK HERE to read related story.)
Bagamat nagpapa-release na si Willie, may natitira pang isa't kalahating taon ang kontrata niya sa ABS-CBN.
Sa ngayon ay pansamantalang ang action superstar na si Robin Padilla ang guest host ng Wowowee. Pero ayon sa balita ay dalawang linggo lamang mananatili sa programa si Robin.
WILLIE'S LETTER. May 12, 2010 ang nakalagay na date sa liham na ipinadala ni Willie sa pamunuan ng ABS-CBN, na unang inilathala ni Ricky Lo sa kanyang kolum ngayong araw, May 21, sa Philippine STAR. Bukod kina Mr. Lopez at Ms. Santos-Concio ay naka-copy furnished din ang liham ni Willie sa mga sumusunod: Cory Vidanes (ABS-CBN Channel head), Johnny Manahan (Wowowee director), Arlene de Castro (Willie's business manager), Linggit Tan (ABS-CBN business unit head), Jay Montelibano (Wowowwee business unit head), at Edgar Mortiz (Wowowee creative consultant).
Narito ang kabuuan ng liham ni Willie sa pamunuan ng ABS-CBN:
Dear Sir Gabby and Ma'am Charo,
I have labored over the past week on what to do in the face of another setback in my relations with the management of the network. ABS-CBN has been my home for the last five years and five months and it has given me the greatest gift—the opportunity to reach out to people who have so little in life.
In the process, I have come to realize that my gratitude to the network would be more meaningful if I considered the impact of my recent actions which has placed the station in a bad light. This is among the reasons, as I will explain in this letter, that I humbly request the management, to release me as a talent of the network.
It is no secret that the program "Wowowee," for almost five and a half years, has been the core of my existence. The program gives me a sense of purpose because I make people happy and I give them hope that, despite their difficulties, they can make things happen for themselves. Because of this, my world has revolved around the show. The desire to make it the best noontime show, has consumed my waking hours, as I conceptualize its format and contents from Monday to Saturday. Apart from this, I want the show to give the network excellent ratings to maintain its reputation as the leader in the broadcasting industry.
My devotion to the show is unparalleled that I have even been besieged by health problems due to the long hours I spend daily, thinking of how to bring "Wowowee" closer to the public. In fact, I have developed a heart blockage, which has already once posed a real threat to my life. I have sacrificed so much. Now, I have to accept the reality that I also have to take good care of my health.
Hence, it is very painful to hear every time my show is the target of unwanted and unnecessary tirades. I do not think that these people even have the slightest clue of what I go through to put together a show like "Wowowee"'. The show is not for me, but for those people who dream of a better life. Is it too much to ask that we be respected for what we do? Is it too much to ask that we be defended from such attacks?
My outburst last week during the live presentation of the show is nothing more than a reflection of my frustration over these things, and was not at all meant to disrespect the network and its management. I implore you to understand that several incidents, which were beyond my control which have marred the reputation of the show to some extent, have already taken their toll on me.
There was the "Wilyonaryo" incident wherein we were accused of deceiving contestants about their winnings; the Ultra stampede wherein I was blamed and severely criticized; the misunderstanding about my remarks when the coverage of the funeral of the late Pres. Corazon Aquino was unexpectedly shown in the giling-giling portion of "Wowowee"'s airing, for which I have apologized. In all these incidents, I took responsibility even if I was not at fault.
I do not want to cause any further embarrassment to the network. I know that all these have caused so much strain on our relations and I would like to save the situation by asking that I be released as a talent of the station. This way, I will have the much-needed space and time to contemplate on my direction in life and, at the same time, maintain the relationships I have built within the network, which are all worth preserving.
Before I end this letter, I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to all the important people I have had the good fortune to work with during the years I have been with ABS-CBN. Ma'am Charo, maraming salamat sa lahat ng pagkakataon na naibigay ninyo sa akin. Kayo po ang tinuturing kong ina na patuloy akong tinatanggap at minamahal sa kabila ng lahat ng aking kahinaan. Hinding-hindi ko po kayo makakalimutan at lahat ng mga bagay na ginawa ninyo para sa akin.
Kay Mr. Gabby Lopez, maraming salamat po sa inyong pagtitiwala sa aking kakayanan na magbigay ng mahusay na programa. Kay Tita Cory Vidanes, maraming salamat sa pagiging maunawain ninyo sa akin. Kay Mr. Johnny Manahan, maraming salamat sa walang-sawang pag-suporta ninyo sa akin at sa "Wowowee," at lalong lalo na sa pagtayo ninyo bilang aking pangalawang ama. Kay Ms. Linggit Tan, Mr. Jay Montelibano at Mr. Edgar Mortiz, maraming salamat sa suporta at tulong ninyo na mapabuti and programang "Wowowee" para sa ikaliligaya ng mga natutulungan natin. Sa lahat ng bumubuo ng management ng ABS-CBN, maraming salamat sa tulong ninyo sa aking programa.
Higit sa lahat, sa lahat ng mga taong sumuporta at patuloy na sumusuporta sa show na "Wowowee," maraming salamat at kayo ang nagbibigay sa akin ng lakas na gawin ang mga dapat kong gawin. Sana po ay maunawaan ninyo ang aking kahilingan sa sulat na ito. Ayaw ko na pong may masasaktan pa at gusto ko lang na maisaayos lahat. Taos-puso akong humihingi sa inyo ng tawad at lubos na pang-unawa sa lahat ng pinagdadaanan ko ngayon.
There will never be enough words to express my gratitude to all of you...
Salamat at mabuhay po kayong lahat!
Willie B. Revillame