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A Year into a Franchise-less ABS-CBN: Who Returned and Transferred to ABS-CBN?

Now one year after its devastating franchise denial, ABS-CBN welcomed the return of a number of stars (who left the Network, after the shutdown). At the same time, it has also opened its doors for artists from rival stations. 

Several homegrown talents took ABS-CBN’s departure from free television a cue for them to search for other opportunities in other venues, including new talent management agencies, and TV networks. But as always, for ABS-CBN, stars come and go.

Those who parted ways still found their way back home in ABS-CBN, while some chose to start anew with a franchise-less Network.

Now one year after its devastating franchise denial, ABS-CBN welcomed the return of a number of stars (who left the Network, after the shutdown). At the same time, it has also opened its doors for artists from rival stations. 

ABS-CBN’s capacity to sustain its roster of talents has become harder than ever, following the dissolution of some of its biggest revenue-generating units. Surprisingly, the Network’s aggressive expansion efforts for all its online and digital platforms, and its continuous bid to return on free television have seemingly enabled the company to create more opportunities for existing and new talents. 

A big part of these opportunities ABS-CBN is able to create block time agreements and secured with two franchise-bearing TV networks.

As more talents bid their goodbyes, some unexpectedly found their way back to the Network and call it their home, after briefly trying their luck on the other side of the fence.

The Returnees.

Following the cancellation of the Sunday noontime musical variety show, Sunday Noontime Live, a number of their main performers and presenters returned to ABS-CBN. 

Donny Pangilinan, was the first to come home, after his short stint as one of SNL’s hosts. He is now set to star on some of ABS-CBN’s most anticipated projects, including the iWantTFC series, He’s Into Her.

Maris Racal, Zephanie, and Sam Mangubat, each made their successful comeback to the ASAP Natin ‘To stage.  

Dinples Romana, who appears on TV5’s sitcom, Oh My Dad!, currently portrays an important role on the ensemble drama, Huwag Kang Mangamba.

RK Bagatsing previously appeared on TV5’s I Got You, but as he promised last year–he returned to ABS-CBN in 2021, and currently plays as Miguel Advincula in Huwag Kang Mangamba

Bugoy Drilon, who was previously rumored that ABS-CBN banned him, made a viral guesting on It’s Showtime. Sources are yet to confirm about his future appearances on the Kapamilya Network.

New Transferees.

Interestingly, while a number of big stars left the Network, new transferees from other networks replaced the vacated slots occupied by the previous Kapamilya stars. 

As expectations for some homegrown stars leaving ABS-CBN mount, rumors about several stars terminating their exclusive ties with GMA Network, also surfaced. 

Janine Gutierrez was among the first to confirm the rumors when she signed up a contract with ABS-CBN, early this year. Gutierrez was with GMA Network for 13 years. Now one of ASAP Natin ‘To’s mainstay hosts. She is set to have her first teleserye on ABS-CBN as well. Kapamilya actor Paulo Avelino is reported to be her first leading man on a TV project. 

Sunshine Dizon, who already parted ways with GMA Network, attended the story conference for the Marry Me, Marry You held yesterday, April 30.

Jake Ejercito also had a formal introduction via a Kapamilya virtual press conference on Friday, April 30. However, his transfer should be earlier if not for the pandemic.

More Kapuso stars are also being speculated to join the Network.

Despite ABS-CBN being franchise-less. The Network’s aggressive steps to produce new quality content seems to invite more artists who are trying to explore opportunities for their careers.

ABS-CBN continues today as being the home to artists, homegrown and transferees alike. 



This proves the Network’s capacity to sustain its pursuit to nourish talents and discover more newcomers. The arrival of big stars from other networks may only mean that ABS-CBN keeps its place as among the richest venues for artists who aspire for greater developments in their careers.

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