MANILA — VIVA Artists Agency (VAA) on Friday revealed that Nadine Lustre signed a contract that makes her its exclusive talent until June 2029, following the actress’ decision to “terminate” her ties with the entertainment giant.
In a statement, VAA, through its legal group Reyno Tiu Domingo & Santos, belied the earlier accusation of Lustre’s camp that it is “taking advantage” of its young artists through “oppressive and illegal” contracts.
“This is not a David versus Goliath scenario as portrayed by Atty. Kapunan,” VAA said, referring to the legal counsel of Lustre.
“This matter is about respect — respect for the law, respect for contractual commitments, and good faith in professional relationships,” the statement added.
Lustre first signed with VAA in 2009, with the help of her parents, according to the group. She then inked further deals to extend her “exclusive agency and management agreement until June 2029.”
VAA maintained that this latest contract is valid, and contradicted Kapunan’s earlier statement that Lustre can revoke the deal at any time.
“This is false,” it said, detailing the agreement between the two parties.
“This required VIVA to invest their time, resources, and good will to hone Nadine’s talent and build her reputation. This included investing in workshops, training her talents, pairing her with an equally popular actor in a love team, producing movies and preparing her for roles that will showcase her skills as an actress, among others. As a result of VIVA’s efforts, Nadine is one of the most sought-after actresses in her generation,” VAA said.
“On the other hand, Nadine as VIVA’s exclusive talent is obligated to abide by the terms of her Agreement. This requires Nadine to appear in tapings, shows, and events; to perform roles in movies which she agreed to do; to coordinate with VIVA on projects and endorsements that would advance her career; among others,” it added.
Citing Article 1927 of the Civil Code, VAA insisted that Lustre “cannot simply turn her back on her contractual commitments after she received benefits as a VIVA talent.”
VAA also denied Kapunan’s claim that the deal was “unconscionable,” saying it has acted in good faith and with Lustre’s welfare and best interest in mind.
It then branded as “malicious and unfounded” Kapunan’s accusation that VAA has been “taking advantage” of its artists.
“VIVA established its business on trust and fairness. The talents developed by VIVA that turned into stars in the industry are countless. VIVA’s roster of artists, past and present, is a testament to its reputation in the industry and it will not allow its goodwill to be tarnished by conjectures and motherhood statements not supported by facts,” it said.
Contradicting Kapunan’s statement VAA has been ignoring letters from Lustre’s camp, the group said it has documents indicating otherwise. The dates include October 21, 2019, when Kapunan’s office stamped as received a letter from VAA; and November 9, 2019, when Kapunan replied to the letter.
VAA warned that third parties who deal and directly transact with Lustre “knowing that she is an exclusive talent of VIVA, are dealing in bad faith and that is an actionable wrong.”
“At bottom, VIVA is not harassing or maligning Nadine as claimed by her lawyer. Neither is VIVA interfering with third parties in directly dealing with Nadine. Rather, VIVA is merely seeking to enforce its rights under the law and under the Agreement that Nadine knowingly entered into and benefited from,” the statement said.
Read VAA’s full statement here