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Johnny Manahan: ‘Weak’ signal caused ‘SNL’ axing

Manahan added that he apologized to two SNL co-hosts, Piolo Pascual and Maja Salvador, for ‘dragging’ them into a broken promise.

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MANAHAN expressed his apologies to ‘SNL’ star Maja Salvador. / PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY OF TWITTER_majasuperstar

Former ABS-CBN talent management head Johnny Manahan revealed that the unexpected axing of TV5’s Sunday Noontime Live (SNL), of which he was the director, was due to its “weak” broadcast signal and management.

In a interview, Manahan said that TV5’s weaknesses became apparent when ABS-CBN stepped up its game by strengthening the Kapamilya network’s ASAP Natin ’To after SNL climbed in the ratings.

TV5’s weak signal was a major factor. “Some people didn’t even know Channel 5 was on the air,” Manahan said. “They don’t have everything, all the elements, in place, not like ABS.”

JOHNNY Manahan.

Manahan added that he apologized to two SNL co-hosts, Piolo Pascual and Maja Salvador, for “dragging” them into a broken promise.

Manahan said that SNL’s Brightlight Productions assured him that the show will air for two seasons, or six months. But Brightlight pulled the plug just three months after SNL premiered in October 2020.


Leaving ABS-CBN

In the same interview, Manahan, known in the entertainment industry as “Mr. M,” clarified that his leaving ABS-CBN after working there for 40 years was caused by a “shadow talent center” that competed with the network’s Star Magic that he co-founded.

He said the reality show Pinoy Big Brother (PBB) formed its own group to manage talents.

MAJA Salvador co-hosted the short-lived variety show.

He recalled bringing up the issue with ABS-CBN management, to no avail.

Manahan pointed out that Laurenti Dyogi as the new head of Star Magic is a “bad thing” because Dyogi is part of management. This makes it difficult for checks and balances when it comes to the welfare of artists.

Now that SNL is off the air, Manahan said he might take a much-needed break that was put on hold when he accepted Brightlight’s offer to direct the show — a decision he made to help retrenched ABS-CBN staff after the network’s renewal of its broadcast franchise to operate was rejected by Congress in May 2020.