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Entertainment

Javi Benitez to action (genre) born

FUNFARE - Ricky Lo - The Philippine Star
Javi Benitez to action (genre) born
Javi is the son of Negros Occidental Rep. Albee Benitez who gave him the go-signal to venture into showbiz with a reminder, “If you like it, stay. If you don’t, go back to the corporate world.”

Asked in a “body talk” feature in this corner how his sex life is, showbiz newcomer Javier “Javi” Benitez answered without batting his thick eyelashes, “Have you seen Fast & Furious? Hahaha!!!”

It was with the same brutal frankness that Javi dealt with movie writers during a free-wheeling “fast and furious” session over lunch at the posh Terrace Manila restaurant on Mother Ignacia St. right across from the ABS-CBN Studios where Javi has been attending workshops and other kinds of training as member of Star Circle 16.

Javi is the son of Negros Occidental Rep. Albee Benitez who gave him the go-signal to venture into showbiz with a reminder, “If you like it, stay. If you don’t, go back to the corporate world.”

Any more reminders from his dad?

“Two things,” disclosed Javi, 23. “One, don’t do drugs. And two, don’t get a girl pregnant.”

Being clean-living and a fitness freak, Javi stays away from anything harmful (he doesn’t even smoke). And how does he avoid violating reminder #2, considering that he’s in a field packed full with beautiful girls?

He answered with the term used by the crew when it’s time to go to the set — “Pull out.” Otherwise, to control the, well, “longing,” he bikes, goes go-kart racing or works out in the gym. Besides, there are as many safety measures as those he observes in every sports (many!) he dabbles in, one of them a tiny item available at your friendly neighborhood sari-sari store.

Asked how many girlfriends he has had so far, he mentioned only two, one of whom a beauty queen whose name starts with the letter “K” with whom he has broken up amicably.

The son of Negros Occidental Rep. Albee Benitez (left) could be a romantic hero or a sexy stud but he’d rather create an image as an action star

“Having a beauty queen girlfriend is stressful,” said Javi. “Daming nakapaligid na ibang guys. Mahirap,” adding that he’s not possessive and he becomes jealous only if the relationship is serious.

Javi stidied elementary and high school at Xavier (classes of 2008 and 2012 respectively), graduating with honors. He was a member of the school’s badminton and football teams, an active go-kart racer from Grade 4 to senior high, and played in the 2008/2009 Asian Karting Open Championships (AKOC).

He likewise excelled in academics and a member of the debating team, aside from being  class president of junior high school  Section A. He took up Political Science at the Santa Clara University in California. In school, Javi had his first taste of acting as the lead actor of a play for the Filipino Club. When he was about 13, Javi co-hosted a TV show called Sports Kidz (2006 to 2008) and, much later, two seasons of Game Changer with his dad.

“I don’t think I will go back to the corporate world,” said Javi who has worked in several companies. “I feel that showbiz is my world.”

Actually, he had a brief stint with Star Magic but went back to the business community.

“I miss showbiz. I think I’m here to stay.”

Now in the cast of the Kapamilya adventure series The General’s Daughter, Javi is shooting Kid Alpha One, an action movie produced by the family outfit with Sue Ramirez as leading lady and Richard Somes as director. He has the full support of his dad who has co-produced a few movies and whose dream project is a local version of Oceans 11 starring his showbiz friends that include Gabby Concepcion, Piolo Pascual, Sharon Cuneta, Albert Martinez and his brother William. 

The teaser of Kid Alpha One was shown during the presscon and the media guys gave Javi a thumbs-up, impressed as they were with Javi’s “fast and furious” action skills.

“It’s just a teaser,” said Javi who has also taken up martial arts (Arnis, etc.) and other action stunts. “The whole movie will be much more exciting.”

(E-mail reactions at [email protected]. For more updates, photos and videos, visit www.philstar.com/funfare or follow me on Instagram @therealrickylo.)

ALBEE BENITEZ

JAVI BENITEZ

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