Amy Perez out of “Face to Face”, Gelli de Belen in

WITHOUT fear of being bashed and burned at stake even by pro-lifers of fundamentalist persuasion, Pambansang Kapitana host of TV5’s  top-rating  morning program “Face-To-Face” Tyang Amy  Perez made known to the entertainment press over lunch this morning  at Napa Restaurant at Sct. Borromeo, Q.C. that if the Divorce Bill now pending approval is finally passed into law she will treat herself and all her “kabarangays”  who can hardly afford the exorbitant  fees for an  annulment case to a most lavish and extended fiesta as her way of rejoicing  for the passing of the mentioned bill.

Tyang Amy Perez disclosed how disappointed she was over the quashing of an annulment case she filed against ex-husband Brix Ferraris who has long migrated to the States. This she shared on the occasion of her temporary leave from “Face-To-Face” to attend to her pregnancy by life partner Carlo Castillo.

TV host/actress Gelli de Belen (Ateng Gelay) will pinch-hit until Tyang Amy returns from her delivery in January of next year.

Tyang Amy got serious in telling the  press that after giving birth hopefully to a baby girl it would be her last after having two siblings in the family by Carlo admitting to the fact that at age 41 her pregnancy at hand can get extremely risky for her and the  baby. But no way

would she put a conclusion to making love per se, she blurted naughtily like you were watching an episode in one of her  racy and salacious TV programs that she will soon be leaving on a sabbatical.

Earlier I asked the Executive Producer Nel San Luis if Gelli de Belen would be as gender sensitive as Tyang Amy who has proven herself highly  in the direction.  San Luis has no doubt about it   because   to her Gelli is also  an avowed LGBT sensitive, if not “Queen of BK.”

At the Q & A portion I asked the management of their apprehension, if any, about Gelli being able to sustain the high ratings, good reviews and commendations and well yes the breakthrough path  that the iconic Tyang Amy has earned for herself the past two years of “Face- To-Face” to change the landscape of Philippine TV prompting  Head of Creative & Entertainment Production Mr. Perci Intalan to join Gelli and Amy onstage, saying in full confidence that in the direction of rating and sustaining factor he is highly optimistic that Gelli can deliver it her own special and unique way, adding that he is more than thankful Ateng Gelay unconditionally accepted the offer to pinch-hit.

And more than anything else , Perci Intalan added that Gelli did take the offer albeit temporarily from a bigger picture knowing fully well that  “Face-To- Face” is not about  sensationalism but about the idea of bringing out  personal stories and social issues to the fore and level of catharsis in the process allowing   conflicting parties to resolve the issues for themselves with the expertise of the host as referee and with the guidance of resource persons from the psychological, legal and  religious viewpoints.

On her part, Amy confessed that she personally handpicked Gelli to attend to the serious task of mediating two clashing sides on “Face- To- Face,” saying, “Being a referee on the show is no easy task. It requires patience, deep understanding of everyday people, and genuine care to resolve their conflict. I can see and feel that Gelli fits the bill perfectly.”

Gelli mastered the art of hosting when she, along with sister Janice and friend Carmina Villaroel, led a daily talk show for a good nine years. Last year, she returned to her home network TV5 as a presenter for the food magazine program “Gellicious.” She also appeared in the TV series “Nandito Ako” and some episodes of “Untold Stories mula sa Face to Face.” Gelli currently co-hosts Sunday noontime show “Game N’ Go.”

At home, Gelli is a doting mom to her young boys (Joaqui, 12 and Julio, 10) and a dedicated wife to actor-singer husband Ariel Rivera. She advocates women empowerment, assisting battered women in depressed communities. Unknown to many, Gelli is also a “galloner,” a regular blood donor of Philippine Red Cross. She sees the value of donating blood as she shares the rare A-negative blood type with only one percent of the national population.

This July, Gelli will take part in the blood-letting activity organized by the Alagang Kapatid Foundation, the charity arm of TV5.

Aside from their shared duties, Ateng Gelli and Tiyang Amy will work together in reaching out to communities in Metro Manila via “Soup Kitchen for Kids.” This feeding program will kick-start this July, in partnership with Alagang Kapatid Foundation. Face to Face’s “Payo sa Bayan” will also soon return to barangays to offer free legal, spiritual and psychological advice via the show’s own “Trio Tagapayo.”


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