Jennica Garcia, at 23, had no qualms of taking on a mother role for the first time.
“I’m excited. Teeny-bopper roles tend to get old after awhile,” Jennica told the INQUIRER during a recent media gathering for her latest afternoon drama series “Bukod Kang Pinagpala.”
On why she accepted a mother role, Jennica explained: “I want to be able to try out different things.”
In “Bukod,” Jennica plays Ofelia, whose daughter dies of heart failure. Longing and desperate for a child, she decides to keep the abandoned baby she finds in front of the house of Leandro and Bessie Alcuar (played by Mark Anthony Fernandez and Camille Prats, respectively). Ofelia raises the child as her own, calling her Lara (Mona Louise Rey).
“It’s tough to be Ofelia,” she said. “I can’t talk with my supposed child as if we’re just buddies. I can’t use my normal high-pitched voice.”
As a young mother in the GMA teleserye, Jennica pointed out that the role demands her to “act with authority.”
Jennica said she was grateful to be part of “Bukod,” especially since she was out of work for four months. “I wasn’t worried about doing nothing during those months, since there was a time when I had no projects for nine months,” she admitted.
Jennica’s contract with GMA 7 will expire in August of this year.
As a daughter, Jennica said she understood why her mother (actress Jean Garcia) did not initially approve of her relationship with actor Alwyn Uytingco—her boyfriend of three years.
She acknowledged that her mother was just trying to protect her from Alwyn, who had been hit in tabloids for being a “bad influence” on her.
“Mommy would easily get affected by negative write-ups. I, on the other hand, simply chose to ignore them,” Jennica explained.
She went on: “I understand where my mom was coming from. She has been a part of this industry for such a long time that she’s very particular with her image.”
Today, all’s well between her mother and her boyfriend, Jennica reported.
“I’m amazed with how my mom treats Alwyn now,” she observed. “She respects and loves him dearly. Now she cooks for him and not for me anymore.”
Jennica considers her 25-year-old boyfriend “one of the best gifts” God has given her.
“Alwyn is one of my inspirations,” she said. “I wasn’t worried about the (negative) write-ups (about him). I know the truth.”
With their relationship growing stronger, are they ready to take it a step further?
“Alwyn and I talk about it (getting married), but we want it to happen in God’s time,” Jennica said. “You see, he’s only my second boyfriend (with actor Mart Escudero being the first).”
Jennica said she was proud that their relationship has now become “God-centered.”
“Bukod Kang Pinagpala,” directed by Don Michael Perez, also features Jackie Rice, Carl Guevara, Crystal Reyes, Frencheska Farr and Ana Marin, among others.