At 32, Tom Rodriguez already has an undisclosed deadline on when to marry his girlfriend Carla Abellana.
“I’m not in a relationship just for the sake of it,” he said in an interview for his new GMA afternoon series with Janine Gutierrez titled “Dragon Lady.”
“I’m in it for the long haul, I’m in it for the long run. Everything I do is towards that end (marriage). It’s almost there. Everything is on track.”
Asked if he has already proposed, Tom said, “Secret.”
He added, “We’re in no rush but it’s definitely working up to that. So, it’s in the works.”
Carla is excited for Tom’s new acting project. He clarified it’s no problem for Clara even if he gets paired with someone as smashing as Janine.
“She’s happy (I got this project). Janine is very beautiful but Carla is very secure of herself,” the actor said.
On the series, Tom plays Michael Chen, a Chinese. Asked how hard it is playing a role so far removed from who he is in real life, the said it’s just like when he played a gay guy on “My Husband’s Lover” some years ago.
“I feel like someone’s telling me that I have no right portraying Vincent Soriano from ‘My Husband’s Lover’ because I’m not part of the LGBTQ community. To me, it’s the same analogy here (on ‘Dragon Lady’).”
“Dragon Lady” is about Chinese families and their culture.
“GMA is really trying to break the mold in whatever way they can, while still giving proper respect to the source material and their inspiration,” Tom noted. “As we deliver entertainment, we also have this social responsibility to keep.”
As early as now, Tom has been preparing himself physically and mentally for his role. He has been doing boxing to lose some weight.
“Boxing is the fastest way I know how to shed extra weight. I spend more time on the rowing machine so I don’t look embarrassing when we do the dragon boat scenes on the series,” he said.
“Dragon Lady” is not your typical drama series on afternoon prime due in March.
“It has elements of fantasy but still grounded on the reality of its characters,” Tom hinted.
On the series, Janine is Celestina, a young lady who is born with dragon-like traits. Her mystical power unleashes the fierce lady boss in her, the Dragon Lady.
Tom’s character is adventurous who refuses to meddle with the family business. forced to prove his mettle to his Chinese family, he allows himself to become instrumental in the downfall of Celestina but whom he falls for later on.
Also in the cast are Joyce Ching, Edgar Allan Guzman, Diana Zubiri, James Blanco, Maricar de Mesa, Lovely Abella, Julie Lee, DJ Durano, Dexter Doria and Odette Khan.