All eyes on TV5 princess Ritz Azul, thanks to sexy magazine cover

And just like that, her life changed in a flash.

TV5 Princess Ritz Azul insists that as far as she’s concerned, she remains the same person she was, say, a month ago. “Sa sarili ko, wala namang nagbago. I’m still the same person,” she nonchalantly declared.

But the leading lady of the upcoming TV5 fantaserye “Kidlat” is also quick to acknowledge that since the release of the November 2012 issue of FHM Philippines, which features her on the cover, everyone else around her has changed.

“Dati, pag may taping, tinatanong pa ako ng mga production assistants (PAs) kung sino ako, ngayon naririnig ko na lang sila, ‘Ah, si Ritz ‘yan!’ Ganun din sa mga mall, ngayon mas marami nang tumatawag sa kin, nagpapa-picture,” she admitted during the pocket interview with InterAksyon and other selected members of media that preceded her well-attended FHM autograph signing session at Robinsons Gallera Saturday.

Ditto with the suddenly increasing number of suitors of the curvaceous 18-year old “Star Factor” alumna who has confessed to having had “no boyfriend since birth”. “Mula nang lumabas ang FHM, ang daming nagpaparamdam sa text, merong from showbiz, may non-showbiz, may politician,” she shared.

Does that include her “Kapitan Awesome” co-star Martin Escudero who only recently has admitted to have feelings for Ritz?

“All I can say is very close kami ni Mart pero alam din naman niya and all those other guys na wala pa talaga sa isip ko ang magka-boyfriend,” she declared.

What does Mart have to say about her posing for FHM?

“Actually, ayaw mag-comment ni Mart pagdating sa FHM. Binanggit ko sa kanya ‘yun bago ako nag-shoot and sabi niya, pag ininterview siya about it, hindi raw siya magco-comment. Sabi niya kasi conservative daw ako so hindi na lang daw siya magsasalita kasi hindi siya sure kung masasaktan ako o hindi sa sinabi niya,” Ritz added.

Her FHM cover also contains a generous cover story and pictorial spread throughout 13 pages and sees Ritz wearing a lacy maillot as well as a couple of two-string bikinis.

Ritz, however, pointed out that the pose is not without its share of hard work. Although she revealed that the premier men’s magazine has been “courting” her since last year after she made heads turn with her daring portrayal of a showbiz aspirant in “Mga Nagbabagang Bulaklak”.

Last September, she also made a lot of heads turn when she graced the 2012 Cosplay Mania event in a sizzling Catwoman suit that, as it turned out, served as a prelude of sorts for her FHM cover stint.

“That was part of the promotion for ‘Kidlat’. Although hindi ko pa alam kung magkakaroon ako ng superpowers sa show, ang sabi sa ‘kin ng creative team, itabi ko lang daw ‘yung Catwoman costume at baka magamit ulit.”

At that time, she still did not know that she’ll be appearing in FHM until one week later when negotiations with her management team finally came through.

That also meant she had to get in shape some more and shed a few pounds as part of her preparation. “Nagpapayat po lalo talaga ako for the shoot,” she disclosed.

All her sacrifices, however, paid off as she is now one of the most talked about FHM cover girls this year, hailed by the magazine as “TV5’s hottest property”, “ a virginal bombshell”, and “a future crush ng bayan”.

Ritz’s cover pose also comes on the heels of Yam Concepcion’s bestselling October shoot for FHM in line with her launching film, “Rigodon” which is hoped to trigger the return of sexy films.

When asked what she feels about doing sexy films herself, Ritz said she’s not prepared to go that far yet.

“Hanggang cover lang muna,” she said, laughing. When asked if she would be willing to do this again, especially if she makes the list of FHM’s annual 100 Sexiest Women In The World, Ritz said she will leave it up to her management team.

As for being compared with other actresses and personalities particularly “Will Tme Big Time” co-host Mariel Rodriguez, who was the magazine’s December 2008 cover babe, Ritz has only one word to say: flattered.

“Wala akong masabi kung hindi puro flattered kasi ang ganda-ganda ni Miss Mariel. Nahihiya nga akong tanggapin na kamukha ko daw siya. Dati, ang naririnig ko, si Angel Locsin naman daw ang kahawig ko.”

For someone who does not even consider herself sexy to begin with and who could not remember any serious suitor pursuing her until recently, being the center of everyone’s attention is certainly something new to the recent debutante.

Whether or not it also eventually translates into a long and illustrious showbiz career, only time will tell. But regardless of what happens, Ritz, who is also the Sangguniang Kabataan Chairman in her barangay in Pampanga, is also keen on pursuing a career in politics.

“Being president? I don’t think that far naman just yet. But I do see myself as a councilor in the near future. Let’s see what happens.”