Jewel Mische formally signed a two-year exclusive contract with Star Magic last night, December 8.
She was formally welcomed by Kapamilya network executives Cory Vidanes (channel head), Linggit Tan (TV entertainment head), and Deo Endrinal.
Also on hand were Star Magic bosses Johnny Manahan and Mariole Alberto, and PR consultant Pat-P Daza.
Jewel is a product of StarStruck, the reality-based artista search of the Kapuso network, where she won as Ultimate Sweetheart in Season 4.
She appeared in various Kapuso shows, most notably Kamandag, where she was paired with former boyfriend Richard Gutierrez.
Her last regular show as a Kapuso was Pilyang Kerubin.
Jewel was with GMA-7 for four years.
THE BIG LEAP. Jewel granted PEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) an exclusive interview after the contract signing held at the 9501 restaurant inside the ABS-CBN compound.
The 20-year-old actress talked about the circumstances of her transfer to the Kapamilya network.
PEP first sighted Jewel inside the ABS-CBN compound last September 13, 2010.
"It was all exploratory talks at that time. There were no concrete plans that time," Jewel said about the meeting with Mr. M (Johnny Manahan).
At that time, she was still with GMA Artist Center (GMAAC) and co-managed by Annabelle Rama.
Jewel disclosed that she went to the Kapamilya network on her own that time.
"During that time, I was talking with them [GMAAC] also," said Jewel, but she refused to reveal details about that meeting.
Jewel thanked the big bosses of GMA-7 for allowing her to transfer to ABS-CBN.
"Naging maayos naman at may linaw ang paglipat ko dito," she said.
"It was really a long process to get here.
"I really would like to thank Ms. Annette [Gozon-Abrogar], and especially Mr. Felipe Gozon.
"I have so much respect for them. They're so gracious enough to grant me my release papers.
"I won't do anything that will dishonor them. In fact, I would really want to make them really proud of me.
"In fact, I wouldn't be here kung hindi nila ako binigyan ng pagkakataon na pumili para sa sarili ko, kung ano sa tingin ko ang susunod na step ang kailangan gawin ko sa aking career."
TRADE SHOW INRODUCTION. Jewel was first introduced as part of the Kapamilya network last Thursday, December 2, at the trade show held at the World Trade Center in Pasay City.
On the following day, December 3, at ABS-CBN's Christmas party for the entertainment press, it was revealed that her first project would be a team-up with Gerald Anderson—Bagwis. (CLICK HERE to read related story.)
However, Jewel didn't stay long at the trade show where she was formally introduced as a Kapamilya.
"I was not supposed to be there," said the young actress.
"That day ko lang din nalaman that they were going to announce about my upcoming primetime show with ABS, and without me signing any contract yet."
There was a sense of nervousness on her part that evening.
"Everybody was requesting me to be there kasi. I was happy to be there.
"You know, the people, like si Tita Cory [Vidanes], si Tita Mariole [Alberto], Mr M [Johnny Manahan], Tito Deo [Endrinal] , sila yung nandiyan ever since.
"Binibigyan nila ako ng oras. They're encouraging me also.
"I see that they want to help me out. They're just excited for me."
Jewel also related a touching experience for her that evening.
"Tito Deo, that night, he was the first one who held my hand during the trade event.
"He was just loving me and holding my hand. He was very supportive and it felt nice.
"He was the one who introduced me to most of the artists who were there.
"Overwhelming yung welcome and favor yung ipinapakita nila sa akin," she said.
When Jewel went onstage at the trade show, everybody was surprised by her presence and the new big show where she will be paired with Gerald.
"I think nobody expected me to be there.
"It was a surprise, a pleasant surprise for everybody.
"I think that was the goal," she said.
MEETING GERALD AND KIM. One of the Kapamilya stars Jewel met that night was her future leading man, Gerald Anderson, although their meeting was brief.
"He was nice. I will get to know more about him later," she said about Gerald.
Jewel also remembered meeting Gerald's love-team partner, Kim Chiu.
"I won't forget how she smiled at me. It was a very sincere smile na it made me feel nice and comfortable.
"Parang she's Gerald's queen when it comes to projects.
"And to have her smiling at me like that, na genuine yung smile niya, that's really something already."
Jewel hopes to get to know more of Kim better.
DAY OF THE CONTRACT SIGNING. Jewel was still nervous on the day of her contract signing with Star Magic. But she is grateful to her family and friends who supported her decision.
"I was trying to be in touch with my friends from GMA. But I was just looking forward sa gabing ito," she said.
Jewel also revealed that she got a call from her former manager, Annabelle Rama, before coming to ABS-CBN.
"She had been acting as my manager," she mentioned.
"She was helping me and sending me to acting workshops also na hindi ko na rin nagawang ipakita sa GMA, kasi nga I made this decision.
"Si Tita Annabelle rin, gusto kong pasalamatan with all of my heart.
"I just had a conversation with her kanina. Tinawagan niya ako.
"I have her approval and I have her blessings.
"And she's letting me grow and do this on my own.
"She was so nice to me and very motherly. I really want to thank her.
"She has been so nice and supportive. And she was wishing me the best.
"She was just excited and happy for me."
DIFFERENT HOME. The soft-spoken young actress feels a sense of relief with the decision she has just made.
"It's a different home now," Jewel said.
"I trust that my new family will take care of me.
"Let's see what is in store for me.
"But then again, whatever is in store for me here in ABS, GMA is a part of it because it was them who opened the door for me.
"They were the one who opened the opportunity for me here in showbiz."