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Entertainment

The bromance of Tom & Nico

Edgar O. Cruz - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines – Lawyer/producer Joji Alonso anticipated that then freshman Tom Rodriguez would be a matinee idol.

A calculated projection, Tom is an extreme good-looker with a killer smile. He also has the ambition that drives him to excel and a professionalism marked by remarkable humility.

In hindsight, Tom is the original Alden Richards for the appeals they share. Or is it the other way around? Alden is the original Tom Rodriguez. This tickles the imagination as they have much in common and currently enjoy peaks of fame.

Unknown to most in the entertainment industry, Tom is the mix-breed who had a bromance with Nico Antonio, eldest son of Atty. Joji and an actor/singer. If that bromance happened at the crest years of love tandems such AlDub (Alden and Maine Mendoza) and JaDine (James Reid and Nadine Lustre) such as now, they would invariably be tagged as TomNic.

Tom with Guji Lorenzana and Jay-R Siaboc even sang as the VOIZboys at co-crew Nico’s wedding reception at the Manila Mandarin Hotel. Even when the boy band disbanded, the TomNic friendship persisted.

In his privileged/underprivileged status, Nico’s fine Filipino features with to-die-for abs and dynamic filmography from a jueteng runner in Kubrador (The Bet Collector) to the singer of Biyaheng Lupa’s theme song, Kahit Isang Saglit that earned him the merit to a first starrer, Posas (Shackled). He did it after going the route of support roles that made him an intensely versatile actor.

That prepared him for his iconic role of Tolytz, the tricycle driver as lover in the high-rater of late primetime, On the Wings of Love. He provides its innocent macho charm infrequently assayed in romantic comedies which he has claimed as his own.

Despite a so-so start, Tom proceeded to do support roles in feel-good features such as the doomed groom in the blockbuster fantasy comedy, Here Comes the Bride. He eventually did attain matinee idol status, well, under very different circumstances.

Tom changed networks from ABS-CBN to GMA7 and took the lead of a closet gay role in 2014 mega series, My Husband’s Lover, with Dennis Trillo. That daring role catapulted Tom to major fame, leading to TVCs and film starrers and a lead star role at the Kapuso network like his on-going remake series, Marimar.

TomNic’s changed circumstances have altered their situation due to demands of work schedule and personal position.

Despite their pressed-up situations, Tom just released Regal Films’ Pre-Nup while Nico’s Tandem action thriller with JM de Guzman is up for screening at the New Wave 2015 of the forthcoming Metro Manila Film Festival. That’s some kind of a filmfest for Nico as Quantum Films’ official entries, Walang Forever and Buy Now, Die Later, also screen at its main section.

But this points out to the viability of a TomNic tandem in a full-length feature. It is rare occasion to do cameo roles in a superstar-studded full-length feature like in Extra (Bit Player) but TomNic did it. That put the bromance in the same status as Vilma Santos, Marian Rivera, Piolo Pascual with 2012’s hottest new actor, “Ser Chief” Richard Yap.

ACIRC

ALDEN AND MAINE MENDOZA

ALDEN RICHARDS

BET COLLECTOR

BIT PLAYER

BIYAHENG LUPA

DENNIS TRILLO

NIC

NICO

TOM

TOM RODRIGUEZ

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