Veteran comedienne Ruby Rodriguez is welcomed back to Viva Artists Agency as she signed a contract after being a freelancer for quite some time now. The former Eat Bulaga co-host also explained her exit from the longest-running noontime show produced by TAPE and broadcasted by GMA Network.
Ruby currently works at the Philippine Consulate general in the US
Now that Ruby Rodriguez has recently started working at the Philippine Consulate General in Los Angeles, California, the signing of management contract is somehow puzzling to the select press people who attended her virtual media conference. She clarified how she would go about juggling her life as a US citizen and as a Filipino celebrity.
“Mag-style Hollywood tayo. Kung talagang maganda yung project, [if it’s] worth it, you can always go back, fly out and fly in. Gano’n lang naman yon,” she explained. “Kunwari, nasa Pilipinas ka, nakatira ka sa probinsya, luluwas ka ng Maynila, tatapusin mo yung project mo, tapos babalik ka ulit sa probinsya. Maraming artistang based na sa probinsya, di ba?”
Ruby is also in the US now that her son needs medical attention. She revealed that he has a rare condition called Henoch-Schönlein purpura.
“Since kailangan niya ng medical treatment dito [sa America], alangan namang wala ang kanyang ina?”
Was Ruby Rodriguez axed from Eat Bulaga?
The 55-year-old actress is humble enough to keep her personal life private, and the only recent time her name was on hot water was when viewers noticed her prolonged absence from the top-rater noontime show, Eat Bulaga, where she hosted for 30 years.
The million-peso question now is this: “Was Ruby Rodriguez removed from Eat Bulaga?”
“When the pandemic started, we were all separated already,” Ruby started to clarify. “When they went back on air, we were just on the sides. We were never called back. Maybe because I already talked with the management that I was supposed to leave [since I asked for Leave of Absence (LOA)]. We’re far apart, I’m not doing the hosting gig anymore there in Eat Bulaga but we still talk [with the hosts]. Regularly, we still text. Especially, my friend, of course Pauleen [Luna-Sotto] and I, we still talk ALL the time.
“With Bossing ang Poleng, no’ng pinaplano ko pa lang ito, pati yung pag-a-apply ko ng trabaho, alam na nila. Because they’re my closest friends, they already know, the others did not. And then the girls, I opened up with Luanne [Dy-Gonzales] sa plano ko, sa anak ko, pero sila-sila lang, sina Allan… Pero hindi talaga kami nakapagpaalaman kasi nga nagbu-Bulaga pa naman no’ng March nang biglang nagpandemya. So paano ka magpapaalam sa kanila?
“Tapos, no’ng nakausap ko si Boss [Tony Tuviera], hindi pa ‘ko nagfa-file ng leave. Verbal pa lang yung agreement namin kasi ifa-file ko yung leave nang March kung aalis na ‘ko. E hindi pa naman ako umaalis so ba’t ako magfa-file. Kasi I was going to file it a month before I leave. Yung mga tanong ng iba, Tinanggal ka ba o ikaw ba yung umalis? Actually, hindi ako umalis kasi nagpaalam ako magli-Leave of Absence lang ako.
“Ang sabi sa ‘kin ni Mr. Tuviera noon e “You will always have a home here in Eat Bulaga at siyempre inasahan ko yon. So when they decided to go on air, it’s their decision kung sino’ng pababalikin nila. Ang makakasagot lang kung tinanggal ako o hindi ay sila. That’s why I always say, please ask them. I don’t know how they will answer it.”
Why Ruby is now back with Viva
She further talked about the reason why she is now with Viva. As a matter of fact, this is more of a homecoming since her roots are with this media company.
“Lahat ng mga, kumbaga, kaliga ko, yung mga kapareho ko ng edad at mga kasabay ko na artista, nagbabalikan sa Viva. Naisip ng handler ko, kinausap niya ang Viva. Sabi niya, “Ruby, bumalik ka na do’n.” Kasi ang hirap ng walang nagma-manage sa ‘yo kasi katulad niyan, kapag kinuha ka, hindi ka makabigay ng ‘real rate.’ Nobody will stand up for you or fix your schedule or choose the right project. We decided to go with Viva because [ang Viva ay] subok na matibay, subok na matatag.”
Ruby started her acting career in the hit sitcom Okay Ka, Fairy Ko, starring Eat Bulaga main host Vic Sotto and EB’s Little Miss Philippines discovery Aiza Seguerra. The TV show was so popular that it ran for a decade (1987-1998) and had a total of 10 spin-off movies.
She puts her trust to Viva—the one she says ‘built her career in acting in the movies.’ “Nagtitiwala ako sa kanila dahil do’n ako nag-umpisa. Viva built my career in acting in the movies. It was really Viva who give me the biggest break. [And] of course, Vic Sotto—hindi natin maaalis yon—sa Okay Ka, Fairy Ko.
“It was Vic Sotto who pulled me in, it was Maricel Soriano who really opened the door, Viva sealed the deal.
“Viva gave the projects, everything. So I was a Viva contract star noong panahon namin ng mga pelikula. I think it’s just right, now on my heydays—pinagaganda ko yung term—ngayong medyo nasa ibang chapter na tayo, I think Viva should handle also my career and I think they know the best because they know everything about me.”
Hosting or acting? Sitcom or movies?
Ruby currently stars in GMA Network’s romantic comedy primetime series Owe My Love, top-billed by Lovi Poe and Benjamin Alves. She plays the role of Nanay Coring, the mother of Lovi’s character. The series is now on its final week on air.
When asked what she is most comfortable to choose among hosting, acting in movies, and acting on TV, she firmly chose acting on television, specifically for a sitcom.
“Sitcom. I’ll choose sitcom. Masaya! At saka doon talaga ako nag-umpisa. Hindi naman talaga ako host originally e. Nag-umpisa akong umarte. I started with Okey Ka Fairy Ko, not Eat Bulaga, and I did movies with Viva. So I was really lined with acting. Nabigyan lang ako ng break sa Eat Bulaga.”
On adjusting to a day job outside showbiz
“Bago naman ako nag-showbiz, nagtrabaho ako ng normal, 8-5, 9-5. Nagtrabaho muna ako Bristol–Myers-Mead Johnson, nagturo ako after. Alam ko yung clock-out, clock-in, alam ko yung buhay na ganon. Tapos, nag-showbiz.
“Hindi talaga ako masyadong nag-adjust kasi I feel like it’s also public relations when you’re working there because you’re dealing with Filipinos, yung mga kababayan natin. It really feels so good to help. Ang sarap ng pakiramdam na kapag may tanong sila at nasagot mo nang tama, tapos nag-thank you sila… ang feeling ko para akong nagtuturo ulit.
“Maski nagshu-showbiz ako noon, bumalik ako sa eskuwela para mag-aral ng SPED (Special Education) para mas maintindihan ko yung anak ko. Yung ate ko, tinutulungan ko sa [nursing job niya]. It feels good because you’re treated normal. Hindi porket artista ka e ayaw kang utusan.”
She also feels good about keeping herself grounded with a smile. Since she does not drive to Los Angeles where her office is located, she has to go through daily public commuting.
“Yung traffic dito, ang lala! Although, siyempre, winner ang EDSA. Ang ginagawa ko, nagpapahatid ako sa subway station or mag-u-Uber or Lyft, tapos nagsa-subway ako papasok. As in inaral ko. Bahala na! Basa, tanong.”
Watch out for Ruby Rodriguez’ upcoming projects soon as she is now under Viva management.