Twenty one-year-old Daniel Azurin is quickly gaining a name for himself—and not just among the students in his alma mater. Tall, dark, and handsome, he’s the kind of guy who, at first glance, will pique your curiosity. And with an impressive set of skills to match—from rapping, to dancing, to sports, to acting—he’ll have you wondering just what he isn’t capable of.
He’s got a competitive side, too. Between November 22 to 27, Daniel goes up against male models from around the world to participate at Manhunt International 2017 in Bangkok, Thailand. If he wins, he’ll be the second Pinoy titleholder since 2012's June Macasaet.
It’s a far cry from what he originally came to the Philippines for. “The plan was to play basketball. But things didn’t really work out how I thought they would,” he admits. When this happened, he immediately shifted his focus towards studying. He's currently majoring in Finance at De La Salle University. “I’m a really business-minded person and, for me, that’s definitely going to help in life. Knowing how money works, how it gets around, how you can invest is long-term knowledge. You can never really go wrong with knowing or graduating with it,” he says.
Though born here, the jock was raised in California. He spent most of his life in the United States and only returned to the Philippines about two years ago.
Luckily, the move hasn’t been difficult. “I could speak Tagalog and I knew the culture. When I came back here, I still knew how to speak Tagalog and it wasn’t hard adjusting because I’d already lived in the Third World,” Daniel reveals.
It’s easy to assume that even at his young age, he had his whole future figured out. He’s just a few months shy of graduating, and can easily pursue a career in business or commerce as soon as he gets his diploma in his hands. Then modelling happened. And a bit of acting soon after.
A body and face like his don’t go unnoticed, especially among top tier agencies like Mercator Artist and Model Management, Inc. One of the very first jobs he booked with them was for Chalk Magazine, where he was featured alongside athletes Bea De Leon, Jerrili Malabanan, and Kim Dy, as well as actors and models Tony Labrusca and Jules Fernandez. Says Daniel, “When I started modeling, it was so weird and awkward. But it was a good thing to experience. I’ve learned so much since (then). It comes (more) naturally now.
His socials have blown up, too. Daniel has over 14,000 followers on Instagram alone. And this isn’t something he takes lightly. “Whether it’s modeling or starting your own business…if you really want to excel, you need a social media platform. If you don’t do anything, then you’re already behind," he explains.
To him, opportunities, like these are more than just gimmicks. “I saw the impact I had towards people. When I would go to the gym, people would ask me a lot of questions like, ‘Hey how do you get the body you have,’ ” he says. “Or when I act (people will ask), ‘Where did you learn that?’ ”
Despite the sudden attention he’s gotten throughout his short stay in Manila, he doesn’t flatter himself. Nor does he think he’s an expert in his newfound craft. “I recently started doing acting workshops. That definitely helped ‘cause I had zero experience,” he reveals.
Daniel is living proof that good things come to when you least expect it. “Even if I didn’t make it in basketball, I’m just taking every opportunity given to me and maximising it so I’m just really open to anything that comes my way,” he reflects.
Only time will tell just what’s in store for this hot undergrad. Best of luck, Daniel!
ALSO READ: Hottie Alert: Meet Hunky Student DJ Max Berardi, The Fil-Aussie Of Your Dreams!
Produced by Mels Timan & Barry Viloria | Cinematography by Jana Jimenez | Photography by Vyn Radovan | Grooming by Iris Tolentino of J.Cat Beauty | Styling by Barry Viloria | Clothes by The Athlete's Foot
Shot on location at FUCT MNL (Unit 7, La Fuerza Building, Chino Roces Avenue, Makati City)
Special thanks to Mae Bello and Dennis Gonzales of Fuct MNL and Will Hsu and Kelly Grace Oliveros of Monster Centaur PR