Rez Cortez’s plea to improve showbiz working condition

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  • For the very first time in 20 years, the Kapisanan ng mga Artistang Pilipino (KAPP) meeting was jam-packed.

    From bit players to big stars, everyone was there to listen and comment on KAPP President Rez Cortez’s presentation on his meeting with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and representatives of TV5, ABS-CBN and GMA networks.

    Following the death of Wenn Deramas and Francis Xavier Pasion, Rez underscored his concern over the working conditions in the ’biz.

    To enlighten dear readers what a regular working day for an actor is like, I am sharing here my own experience.

    There are times we would wake up as early as three in the morning so we could get to the set at around 6 a.m. Note sometimes we would wake up even earlier inasmuch as there are location shoots held in far-flung locations.

    Usually, the cameras would start to grind at 8 a.m. This would often continue to 3 a.m. the next day. Depending on the need, working hours extend to 10 or 11 a.m.

    Most of us get to rest in-between takes but the director and his or her crew continues  to work.

    Again, this is just an example, Not all productions are like this. I have a TV show where I only work from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

    I am not at liberty to discuss the minutes of the meeting but Rez granted me an interview after, telling me how they are pushing for far more better working environment for everyone in the industry.

    “We would like to reiterate to everyone involved that what we are striving for is a harmonious partnership with networks and producers. The Actor’s Guild and its members are not warring with the networks/producers because we very well know that these networks/producers are the ones that give us jobs. We do not want to bite the hand that feeds us. We just want to be healthy enough to work for the networks, which is the reason for the position paper we presented to DOLE with the representatives of the major networks present in the meeting,” he said.

    Rez also allowed me to write the details of the position paper the Film Academy of the Philippines (FAP) presented to DOLE asking for proper regulation on the actor’s fair working hours, transportation, a decent standby area to protect the actor from the heat and rain, adequate meals, and insurance. (G. Sanchez, mb)

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