VIVA Films

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Viva Films
Type Subsidiary of Viva Entertainment
Industry Motion pictures
Founded Quezon City, Philippines (1981)
Headquarters Quezon City, Philippines
Key people Vicente G. del Rosario III (Chairman of the Board and CEO)
Veronique del Rosario-Corpus
Products motion pictures
Owner(s) Vicente G. del Rosario III (Chairman of the Board and CEO)
Parent Viva Entertainment

Viva Films is a Filipino film production company which started in 1981. This company is part of the Viva Entertainment Group.

History[edit]

Sharon Cuneta and Gabby Concepcion love team[edit]

The popular pair of singer Sharon Cuneta and Regal Films star Gabby Concepcion (who were married in 1984 and later separated) starred in the first Viva movie "P.S. I Love You." The movie was directed by veteran actor/director Eddie Garcia. Though Viva was a new film company, "P.S. I Love You" was one of the best memorable blockbusters in Philippine Cinema. The movie's theme song was sung by Sharon herself. Sharon Cuneta became one of the company's resident actresses. Viva Films also produced the last Sharon-Gabby movie, "Tayong Dalawa" (The Two of Us).

Home of quality dramas, Action and Comedies[edit]

Veering away from the Sharon Cuneta-Gabby Concepcion tandem, Viva became home of quality dramatic films. The "glossy" production of films such as "Sinasamba Kita", "Palimos ng Pag-ibig", "Saan Darating Ang Umaga?", "Kung Mahawi Man Ang Ulap" and "Paano Ba Ang Mangarap?" garnered critical and commercial acclaims. Viva Films also made a documentary film on the Puerto Rican boy group Menudo on their visit to the Philippines in 1985.

Viva also joined in the action bandwagon when it launched then-supporting actor Phillip Salvador as an action star in the movie "Boy Negro". It was also instrumental in introducing to the public Robin Padilla ("Bad Boy" and "Anak ni Baby Ama") and Raymart Santiago ("Noel Juico: Batang Kriminal") as new action heroes. Veteran action stars Eddie Garcia, Rudy Fernandez, Bong Revilla Jr. and Fernando Poe, Jr. Redford White 1988 also made movies for Viva.

Viva also made "glossy" comedy films like "Working Girls" and "Sa Totoo Lang" which featured serious actors and actresses as main characters instead of comedians. The company also gambled on new comedians as the '80s decade was about to end. Comedy flicks such as "Puto", "Jack en Jill", "Humanap ka ng Panget" and "I Love You Three Times a Day" launched the respective careers of Herbert Bautista, Andrew E. and Jimmy Santos. In the '90s, Viva launched the careers of Dennis Padilla and Janno Gibbs as solo comedians while reviving the film careers of veteran comedians Chiquito ("Pinagbiyak na Bunga") and Joey de Leon ("Hibangers").

Bagets, Estudyante Blues, TGIS[edit]

Viva was also known as home to quality youth-oriented films, starting with the 1984 breakthrough flick, "Bagets". The movie was top billed by William Martinez and launched the careers of then unknowns Aga Muhlach, Raymond Lauchengco, JC Bonnin and Herbert Bautista. With its box-office success, the company produced a sequel "Bagets 2" with Ramon Christopher, Jon Hernandez and Francis Magalona joining the original cast, the success of the 2 Bagets film made it the flagship movie of VIVA films & it set the trend for youth-oriented movies in the 80's which other film companies copied, but they never matched nor equaled the success brought about by The 2 Bagets films.

In 1989, Viva introduced its second batch of young stars via the youth-oriented comedy "Estudyante Blues". It introduced to the public young stars & That's Entertainment mainstays such as Vina Morales, Gelli de Belen, Keempee de Leon, Raymart Santiago and Dingdong Avanzado. The movie was also a resounding success, despite the fact that "Estudyante Blues" became an earlier hit via the Philippine music airwaves as a single sung by Freddie Aguilar.

Viva later on entered into television production by partnering with GMA Network. Their first venture together was the sitcom "Ober Da Bakod" in 1992 with That's Entertainment talents Donita Rose, Gelli de Belen, and Janno Gibbs and Anjo Yllana as main stars, followed by soap opera "Villa Quintana" in 1993 with Donna Cruz and Keempee de Leon as lead stars. However, it was the 1995 youth-oriented series "TGIS" that gave Viva its biggest success as a television producer. Headlined by Angelu de Leon, it gave birth the careers of Bobby Andrews, Michael Flores, Onemig Bondoc, Red Sternberg, Raven Villanueva and Ciara Sotto. The success of the TV series was later translated to the big screen, when the "TGIS" group became box-office stars via the movies "Takot Ka Ba sa Dilim?" and "TGIS the Movie" (co-produced by GMA). This was followed by the Viva Teen Barkadas headed by Dingdong Dantes, Anne Curtis, Sunshine Dizon, Kim Delos Santos, Antoinette Taus, Polo Ravales, Dino Guevarra, Chubi del Rosario.

Reputable Starmakers[edit]

Viva also created its own stable of stars by discovering fresh faces and relaunching the careers of some celebrities and turn them into major stars.

In the '90s, the company was able to discover fresh faces in Dawn Zulueta, Tonton Gutierrez, Nanette Medved, Rustom Padilla, Anjanette Abayari, Gary Estrada, Ariel Rivera and Mikee Cojuangco whose respective launching movies were greatly supported by moviegoers at the box-office.

Also in that decade, Viva was also instrumental in repackaging Cesar Montano from supporting actor to action star, Albert Martinez from matinee idol to character actor, Vina Morales, Donna Cruz, Ana Roces and Gelli De Belen from teen stars to leading ladies, and Regine Velasquez from concert artist to leading lady status. The gamble paid off as these stars were able to quickly gain a following among fans.

The new millennium also paved way for Viva to discover more new talents via its talent search shows "Star for A Night" and "Search for A Star". Multimedia concert artists Sarah Geronimo, Mark Bautista and Rachelle Ann Go are among the products of these shows.

As the Viva family grew, the company put up Viva Artists Agency to manage the respective careers of its stars including Box Office stars Anne Curtis, Cristine Reyes and Sarah Geronimo.

Steady decline, Resurrection and Co-Production[edit]

As the '90s decade was about to end, Viva's presence as a big-time movie company was threatened with rising costs, movie piracy and declining film production. But this did not stop them from evolving and reinventing themselves into a multi-media company.

"Lastikman: Unang Banat," an entry for the 2004 Metro Manila Film Festival, would have been the last movie for the company. However, after an almost 2-year hiatus, Viva Films made a comeback by co-producing with new players GMA Films and Star Cinema while producing its own films. Among the movies that the company co-produced or solely produced were "Till I Met You" (with GMA Films) "Wag Kang Lilingon" (with Star Cinema), "Ang Cute ng Ina Mo" (with Star Cinema), "Paano Kita Iibigin" (with Star Cinema), "Ouija" (with GMA Films), "Apat Dapat Dapat Apat: Friends 4 Lyf and Death" (with On-Q 28 Productions), "Ikaw Pa Rin: Bongga Ka Boy", "When Love Begins" (with Star Cinema), "A Very Special Love" (with Star Cinema), recently in 2009, Status: Single (with On-Q 28 Productions), You Changed My Life (with Star Cinema), and Patient X (with GMA Films and RGUTZ Productions), and on 2010, Babe, I Love You (with Star Cinema), Working Girls (with GMA Films and Unitel Pictures), Hating Kapatid, In Your Eyes (with GMA Films), and Petrang Kabayo. "Patient X" marks the first Viva movie of rising young actor Richard Gutierrez followed by "In Your Eyes" and also the first Viva movie of teen actress Cristine Reyes who can be the next Viva princess after signing a contract with Viva Entertainment, while "Working Girls" marks the first Viva movie of 1st Starstruck princess Jennylyn Mercado, who can be the next Viva princess, after she signed a contract with Viva Entertainment.

Viva also made a big comeback in the awards derby when its 2008 Metro Manila Filmfest entry "Baler" captured most of the major awards given by local award-giving bodies.

On 2011, Catch Me, I'm in Love, No Other Woman, The Unkabogable Praybeyt Benjamin, Won't Last A Day Without You (all co-produced by Star Cinema), and Moron 5 & A Crying Lady (co-produced by MVP Films) were released. On 2012, Of All the Things (co-produced by GMA Films) was released. On 2013, It Takes a Man and a Woman, Momzillas, and Girl, Boy, Bakla, Tomboy (all co-produced by Star Cinema) were released.

Starting 2014, Viva Films will start co-producing movies with its rival film corporation Regal Films.

Viva movies on TV[edit]

During the early '80s, Viva tied up with IBC-13 & GMA Network to air their early releases every Saturday nights. The movie block, entitled "Viva Box Office Hits", showed early movies of Sharon Cuneta and Gabby Concepcion and other early releases by the company. In 1988, Viva pulled out of IBC and transferred the movie block to GMA Network. During the GMA era, "Viva Box Office Hits" were shown on Thursday nights for two years with the latest releases from 1988 onwards. In 1992, Viva renewed their contract with GMA-7 where their latest movie releases starting in 1991 onwards were shown every Thursday nights. The movie block was renamed "Viva Sinerama". It was also during the GMA era where Viva aired another movie block on Monday nights called "MVP (Monday Viva Presentations)" in 1994, primarily to compete with ABS-CBN's then top-rating movie block "Regal Presents" and "Star Cinema Presents" . During the new millennium, Viva diversified its movie library where it was aired randomly on IBC-13 (via Viva TV channel) and ABC 5 (via the Viva Box Office movie block).

From free TV, Viva was able to tie up with Star TV and Fox International Channels Philippines to create an all-Filipino international movie channel on May 1, 1995, called Viva Cinema. Viva Cinema aired over 300 movies coming from the Viva library, including latest releases. It also aired behind-the-scenes outtakes and refreshing entertainment shows. The partnership between Viva and Star TV ended on July 31, 2003 when Viva created its own movie channel, PBO (Pinoy Box Office) and entrusted the entire Viva movie library to ABS-CBN by allowing it to air over. Viva Prime Channel air mostly action and Drama movies at 7:00 p.m. only every other week of the month. Viva Cinema return on February 2009 along with the launch of Philippine DTH's Cignal Digital TV of the same month. Aside from Viva entrusted the entire Viva library to ABS-CBN co-productions of Viva and Star Cinema are also aired exclusively via ABS-CBN's movie block Kapamilya Blockbusters and Studio 23's movie blocks Barkada Nights and Lunch Box Office, and via Viva Cinema, Viva Prime Channel,and PBO. While co-productions of Viva and GMA Films are exclusively aired via GMA's movie blocks Kapuso Movie Festival and/or Kapuso Movie Night, GMA News TV's movie block Takilya Blockbuster, and via Viva Cinema, Viva Prime Channel,and PBO.

Other Film Companies owned by Viva[edit]

P1.1-billion IPO[edit]

On January 2008, Viva chairman Vic del Rosario announced that Viva Communications expects to raise P1.1 billion (1 US dollar = 41.48 pesos) through approval of the initial public offering (IPO) by the Philippine Stock Exchange, on listing date of March 5. It plans to sell up P 92.8 million new shares and P 49.9 million secondary shares at P 12.93 / share (offer is 35% of the company's issued and outstanding capital stock). It appointed Banco de Oro (BDO) Capital and Investment Corporation as lead underwriter and Abacus Capital and Investments Corporation as co-lead underwriter. Viva's net income was P 121 million for January to October 2007, double its 2006 earnings and projects net profit of P 330 million this year.[1]

Upcoming movies[edit]

Release Date Title Cast(s) Director Genre(s) Associated Film Production Reference


September 3, 2014 The Gifted Anne Curtis, Sam Milby, Cristine Reyes Chris Martinez Romance, Comedy Multivision Pictures [2][3][4][5][6][7]
December 25, 2014 Praybeyt Benjamin 2 Vice Ganda, Richard Yap, Alex Gonzaga, James "Bimby" Aquino-Yap Wenn Deramas Comedy Star Cinema [8]
Note: Because these movie projects are in production, the title, cast and directors are subject to change. There is also the possibility of the project to be shelved and pushed back for a later release date or totally be cancelled.

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

References[edit]