One of the more eye-catching personalities to come out of the Pinoy Big Brother house from its most recent season, Rhys Eugenio has caught the admiration of many. It's obviously not just for his boyish, Enrique Gilesque looks, but also for his very amiable personality. Although what not many might know about this emerging young actor, is that behind his new-found celebrity life, is a boy who is very loving of his family and friends, and someone who works hard only for the chance to share his success with them. See how the 18 year-old is mapping out his plan toward a path of success!
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Describe yourself in five words.
Hmm. Loving, kind, makulit sometimes, trustworthy, and hardworking!
How do you think people see you?
To be honest, when I first met people in Philippines, they’d say, “Akala ko suplado ka!” or like, “Mayaman ka kasi galing ka sa States.” But then once they got to know me, none of that was true, so they were kind of surprised. When a lot of people from different countries come here, they kind of assume a lot of things. But I grew up pretty much like a Filipino. Growing up, you always learn your values as a Filipino. Filipino culture versus any culture is really different in their family values, especially going to church on the weekends.
What is something you’d be happy doing every single day?
Hanging out with my family, playing with my dogs, going on a road trip because I like driving around. I love hanging out with my family especially now because it’s just me and my dad in the Philippines. So whenever I do see them, I get so excited!
What keeps you busy nowadays?
Work for me is usually something that has to do with PBB, and helping them promote the show, modeling, and workshops. In my free time, I do my homework, and I try to learn the guitar. I also used to study Tagalog in my free time, but now I just kind of speak it, so I don’t really study it anymore!
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What’s the most spontaneous thing you’ve done lately?
I went on vacation in Siargao, and saw a rope hanging by the side of the road. So, I got out of the car, climbed up a coconut tree, swung on the rope, and did a backflip! There were also some people there that saw me and recognized me, and they even let me write my name on the wet pavement they were constructing. So I think that was pretty fun!
How do you like to spend your alone time?
I don’t really like to be alone that much. I’m mainly with my dad, but when I have time alone, I like to do school, cause I’m really excited to go to college here. I only have two classes left, then I graduate. Other than that, playing the guitar, going to the gym, and then I read the Bible sometimes.
What do you think about when you’re by yourself?
I always think about the future. I think about where I’m going to be, or if I’m still going to be doing what I’m doing now, and how am I going to provide for my family. I just want to be successful for my family, especially for my lola and lolo. I want them to see me successful because I’m kind of the youngest out of all my cousins. All of my other cousins are already successful in life, and I like them to see me succeed before it’s too late.
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What was the best phase of your life?
My whole life so far after moving to the Philippines. Not just because of my career, but because most people in the States don’t understand the culture of any other country at all, their values, and how hard some people have it in life. I’ve seen people here playing here on the streets, and in the States, kids have iPhones and iPads, and complain about being bored and that they are sad. So being here was really eye opening, and made me feel so much grateful for what I have.
What was the worst phase of your life, and how were you able to overcome it?
I would say one real low phase was right before PBB. I was staying in the Philippines by myself, my dad was in the States, and my lolo had Alzheimer’s. I wasn’t sure I wanted to do PBB anymore, because what if after I come out (of the house), my lolo wouldn’t remember me anymore? That was my biggest fear.
Later on I was told that my lolo didn’t have Alzheimer’s, but that he had a brain tumor the size of a lime, so they needed to take it out. And while he was still in the hospital, I had to go back to the Philippines for PBB, so at first I was really sad, and always thought about leaving. That’s where reading the Bible came in. I started reading the Bible, and that was like the first time I really opened up a Bible besides in church. And that’s what got me through it. That, and praying every night.
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What is part of your bucket list this year?
For this year, I’d like to fly out my sister or my lola to the Philippines, because my sister hasn’t been here since 2008, and she’s really been wanting to come here. So if that’s possible, that’s what I would want to do. If not, I have a friend who wants to visit me this summer, and I’d like to show him my country. Like go on a road trip take him to Batangas, and then take him to Siargao.
I’d also like to work hard, but be happy. I really just want to be successful in life so I can take care of my family when they’re older, like how they’ve been taking care of me. That’s still one of my priorities. But now, I just want to really be happy. I just want to enjoy.
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Produced by Mels Timan | Creative direction by Barry Viloria | Photography by Vyn Radovan | Cinematography by Lui Jimenez and Christina Zabat | Editing by Christina Zabat | Styling by Camille Santiago | Grooming by Angie Cruz for Make Up For Ever | Shot on location at Destino Beach Club Dive Resort And Hotel, Bauan, Batangas | Special thanks to John Brillantes of Reco Models, April del Rosario, Portia Dimla of Star Magic, Olli Sara, Fel Sison-Garcia, The staff of It's Showtime, and Havaianas Philippines