In Tom Rodriguez, there’s more than meets the eye

June 21, 2017 - 8:54 PM
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Tom Rodriguez. (Photo by Jill Tan Radovan/InterAksyon)

Tall, dark, handsome and charismatic are words that easily describe Tom Rodriguez. The Filipino-American actor is a charmer alright with his looks and ability to ignite a conversation, but is also talented in more ways than one.

Tom has proved his mettle as an actor, most notably with his portrayal of Vicente Soriano in the controversial telenovela “My Husband’s Lover.”

He also garnered positive reviews for playing the title role in Atlantis Productions’ “Aladdin” in 2012.

Tom makes a fine host as proven in previous hosting commitments; and he can also sing, as noted in his stellar performance in the aforementioned musical play, recording projects, and as a former member of a local boyband.

Usually cast in the glow of set lights, Tom is celebrated as an actor and entertainer, but very rarely as a visual artist.

He can do a mean illustration of a fictional comic-book-worthy character or a real-life person. He was already a self-taught artist by the time he took up Digital Animation in college while still residing in the United States.

“It has always been a part of me and who I am,” Tom said about his creative side in an interview with InterAksyon during his launch as brand ambassador for Crizal Prevencia, Essilor’s most technologically advanced line of protective lenses.

Although successful with consecutive acting projects, the 29-year-old actor admits that should he ever decide to completely shift to an alternative career, it would definitely involve digital arts.

“I just invested in equipment. I’ve been trying to bring a process here for three years now—a different way of doing post-production and animation using real-time renderers and no one seemed to wanna do it. So I said, ‘Ako na lang, I’ll do it,’ ” Tom said, with more than a hint of passion in his tone.

Tom admits that he’s planning to put up his own animation production company. His endorsement deal with Crizal Prevencia couldn’t have come at a better time as the product goes well with his multi-screened lifestyle that involves the use of various computers, monitors and gadgets.

Tom also said that so far, he’s been very happy with his decision to transfer to a different network. He was still cast as Jeff, the father of Aiza Seguerra’s son in the ABS-CBN daytime soap “Be Careful With My Heart” when he decided to accept GMA’s offer to topbill “My Husband’s Lover.”

“I’ve been very happy with GMA. When I transferred to them through MHO, they’ve been consistently giving me not just work, but steady work, competent work that forces me to get out of my comfort zone.”

After “My Husband’s Lover” where his romance with co-star and now girlfriend Carla Abellana, blossomed, Tom also worked in a series of shows for his new mother studio, from playing Sergio in “Marimar” opposite Megan Young, to hosting shows like “Celebrity Bluff” and “Don’t Lose the Money” and recently, as part of the cast of “Mulawin” and “Someone to Watch Over Me.”

On the big screen, Tom’s stellar performances in Chris Martinez’s “Here Comes The Bride” and Alvin Yapan’s “Gaydar” netted him acting nominations from the Golden Screen Awards and Star Awards for Movies. Recently, he earned another Best Actor nomination from the Madrid International Film Festival for his portrayal of a rising politician in Sigfreid Barros-Sanchez’s political thriller, “Magtanggol.”

Even as the accolades keep on coming, Tom is already working together on a new show, “I Heart Davao,” which also stars Carla. The actor said he is eager to work with Carla again after three years of not being in the same show.

“It’s the best,” he exclaims. “I’m glad that they put us back together again after a few years; the last time we worked together was in 2014. I’m glad na eto, nagtratrabaho na naman kami.

“As much as I love my job, I do admit that it can get exhausting, yung puyatan. And there’s no better way to re-energize than to be working with someone that you just enjoy working with. It doesn’t hurt that she’s just a breath of fresh air to my eyes,” Tom said.

Tom recently posted a photo of him and Carla together, accompanied by a tender birthday greeting for Carla on Instagram, calling her “the most radiant soul I know who never ceases to inspire, amaze and endow me with a sense of awe and wonder…to MY Wonder Woman” and “my rock, and my heart.”

This post was followed by another tribute a few days after, this time to his father, Bill Mott, who passed on in March. Tom confessed that his father’s passing was the toughest his family has gone through, but also said that it was but necessary for them to move on.

“The best thing I can do na lang for Dad is be the best that I can be. Because everything that I am is partly because of him. He helped shape the person that I am now. I’ll be forever grateful for him,” Tom said.