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Claudine’s options

Claudine Barretto (NPPA Images)

Has Claudine Barretto been too controversial for her own good?

Claudine Barretto, once the toast of showbiz and the premiere actress in both film and television, has found herself without any secure "home" to push her career, reports the Philippine Entertainment Portal, after her two-year exclusive contract with GMA Network expired last year. The website reported that GMA did not renew her contract without any clear reason.

In its report, PEP interviewed GMA Network chairman and CEO Felipe Gozon, who confirmed the news and offered no other reason to her exit than just a decision "ng inampalan."

This OMG! blogger tried repeatedly to contact GMA Network regarding the issue but it declined to release an official statement.

As impervious as Willie R?

Gozon was also quoted to have denied her supposed exit had anything to do with the NAIA-3 incident, wherein uploaded videos showed her and her husband Raymart Santiago engaged in a scuffle with journalist Mon Tulfo.

However, the connection seems obvious, even logical.

Why invest millions of pesos on someone with an image so tainted, it would be a stretch to have it live up to the thespic expectations of the audience? How can Claudine play her usual role of the hapless lass doing the right thing in overcoming sometimes insurmountable odds when her audience has a very different picture burned in their mind?

Is she that good of an actress or an impervious box office draw? Is she Willie Revillame, whose bouncing power knows no bounds? Or, dare I say it, Nora Aunor, whose so-called unprofessionalism is as legendary as her superstar status?

Somebody's watching you

Well, the powers-that-be have voted with non-renewal.

Will she then go to TV5? Several news reports, including one from the Philippine Daily Inquirer quoting Perci Intalan, TV5 head of creative and entertainment, indicate the negative, despite her appearance in a Kapatid drama anthology called "Untold Stories." Nothing "long term," says TV5, which has in its talent roster three of Tulfo's brothers.

The NAIA incident may be something she and Raymart would regret for the rest of their lives. Even if they claim they were "victims" of inefficiency by CebuPacific and that Mon Tulfo had indeed invaded their privacy and arrogantly assumed his journalistic rights at the wrong place and time, the couple could have reacted in a better way.

Considering the wide availability of camera phones and the ubiquitous video sharing site everyone uses and views, there is no escaping the consequences of thoughtless behavior and actions.

Start of a career nosedive?

The loss of her GMA contract may just be the start of a career nosedive unless Claudine does something drastic to check it.

So what is left for her? Will she go back to her first showbiz home, ABS-CBN? Unlikely, considering how she surprised the people who gave her first break in showbiz with that sudden transfer to the network's biggest rival. Unless, however, she persuades them, especially Star Magic head Johnny Manahan, that she still has what ABS-CBN needs. But that's a really long shot.

Can Claudine convince GMA to reconsider since the network hasn't made an official announcement on the matter? Unless she makes a valid argument that the NAIA incident will not affect her status as a showbiz personality, I think her chances are pretty slim.

Will she her luck further at TV5? Not a bad option. All she has to do is accept whatever's there, like supporting roles, piecemeal projects, or do the unthinkable like appearing in the Tulfo brothers' show "T3" and maybe apologize? I think that would work wonders for her (and the ratings). But then again, it seems far fetched.

Should Claudine go indie? A good idea. But she'll have to shed her so-called "diva" reputation, if she wants takers.

Or will she embark on another career? Retire? Or lie low until the smoke clears and then make a daring comeback?

All seem unlikely, in my view. What do YOU think?

Editor's note: The blogger's views do not represent Yahoo! Southeast Asia's position on the topic or issue being discussed. Yahoo! Philippines OMG! welcomes opinions—and the occasional wisecracks—that enrich and highlight new angles on its stories. Below-the-belt rants may be a fact of online life, but that doesn't mean you should turn into a troll. You can speak your mind without bashing anyone. Keep it clean, folks.

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