AJ Raval is undoubtedly a bombshell.
In just a span of eight months, AJ has starred in four digital movies: Pornstar, Death of A Girlfriend, Taya, and Shoot! Shoot!
The 21-year-old newbie has quickly become the hottest sexy star launched by her mother studio VIVA Entertainment, which has been bringing back titillating films of late.
AJ, whose real name is Elizabeth Buensuceso, was born on September 3, 2000.
She is the daughter of popular '90s action star Jeric Raval and former sexy star Alyssa Alvarez.
But AJ was raised by Jeric and his legal wife Holiday from the time she was three until she turned 14 years old.
AJ fondly calls Holiday by the monicker Deyow.
In an interview dated February 2021, AJ told Cabinet Files: "Yes, kay Deyow ako lumaki and dala-dala ko ang family name niya.
"To be honest, siya talaga ang alam ko na mother ko nung bata pa ako.
"Of course, minahal ko si Deyow. Inalagaan niya ako, minahal, tinanggap, pinalaki na maayos, at tinuruang makipag-kapwa tao."
When she had to leave her father's care, AJ was saddened because she grew close to her stepmom and her half-siblings.
But she also spoke highly of the time she was reunited with her biological mother Alyssa.
AJ elaborated: "Okay na okay ang biological mother ko, napaka-supportive niya sa akin. Parang magbarkada kami.
"Pinagbibigyan niya ako sa lahat dahil gusto niyang bumawi sa ilang years na hindi kami nagkasama.
"Of course, na-appreciate ko iyon. May misunderstandings sometimes dahil iba ang kinalakihan ko, pero habang tumatanda ako, naiintindihan ko naman."
AJ didn't begrudge her unconventional family set-up.
As it happened, she grew up aware that her father Jeric has 18 children from different women.
"Kilala ko ang lahat ng mga kapatid ko, sila lang ang barkada ko. Close talaga kami, walang samaan ng loob at lahat kami ay nagmamahalan.
"Ang sabi ng tatay ko, walang kapatid sa labas. Kapag kapatid mo, kapatid mo."
aj's appearance on it's showtime's "kaparewho"
AJ first caught the attention of netizens in June 2019, when she joined as a searchee in "Kaparewho," a dating match segment in the ABS-CBN noontime show It's Showtime.
She was introduced as Jeric's daughter looking for a male friend among the contestants.
The video clip of her introduction in the show gained 2.7 million views on ABS-CBN Entertainment's YouTube channel.
Most of the netizens noted how AJ takes after Jeric's good looks and how charming she is with her bedimpled smile.
FATHER-DAUGHTER DUO IN MINUTE TO WIN IT
A few days later, in July 2019, AJ had another guest appearance on ABS-CBN. This time, she and Jeric joined the game show Minute To Win It, hosted by Luis Manzano.
AJ charmed the audience when she gave a glimpse of her easy-going relationship with her dad.
Luis asked her, "Paano ba kiligin [si Jeric]? Siyempre sanay tayo, action star iyan, astig iyan!'"
She made everyone laugh when she candidly spoke of how Jeric would ask her to cover up his womanizing ways.
AJ casually exclaimed, "Pag pinagtatakpan ko siya pag nambababae siya!"
Jeric remarked, "Nilaglag mo pa ako, akala ko okay na!"
AJ simply laughed, but she was clearly close to her dad as she kept clinging on to him.
Luis then asked her, "Paano yung pagtatakip na yun? Sige nga scenario natin."
Still looking relaxed on screen, AJ narrated, "Punta kaming mall. Biglang may magbabalita sa mother ko, Yung asawa mo nakita ko sa mall may kasama.'
"Tapos kakausapin niya ako. Sabi niya, 'Ay, ikaw yung kasama ko sa mall, ha? Nag-mall tayo kanina.'"
At no point did Jeric stop AJ from telling her story, and all he did was cover his face in embarassment.
When asked to give a message to his wife, Jeric replied in jest, "Ahh... Alam mo, asawa ko, kung nasaan ka man... diyan ka na lang."
AJ FINALLY JOINS SHOWBIZ
It turned out that AJ had always wanted to follow in her parents' footsteps and make a career for herself in showbiz.
At the age of 15, she was part of an all-female group called Fabulous Girlfriends.
It was a song-and-dance group created by her manager Jojo Veloso, who used to be her mom Alyssa's manager back in the '90s.
"Mahilig kasi akong sumayaw at kumanta. Sa katunayan, palagi kaming gumagawa ng mga rap song ng Kuya Ace ko," AJ said in her interview with Cabinet Files dated January 2021.
She added, "Kaya nung pumirma ako sa VIVA, inalok kaming magkapatid na mag-release ng kanta, ang 'Madaling-Araw' na ginawan namin ng music video."
AJ was 18 years old when she first signed a five-year movie contract with VIVA Entertainment. The contract was later extended to another five years.
In January 2021, she was finally launched as one of the cast members in the comedy film Pornstar starring Ara Mina, Rosanna "Osang" Roces, Alma Moreno, and Maui Taylor.
AJ played the role of an enthusiastic protegé learning the art of being a pornstar from these veteran sexy stars.
They gave her tips—from how to pull off a sexy moan for all kinds of love scenes to how to navigate through showbiz intrigues and detractors.
Off-cam, AJ said she also got a lot of helpful advice from Rosanna and Maui, who knew about her decision to go for daring roles in her next movie projects.
AJ spoke about it when she did a virtual interview for PEP Live along with her Pornstar co-stars back in January.
"Si Ate Osang, sabi niya sa akin, kung papasukin ko yung pagpapa-sexy, dapat buo yung loob ko.
"Si Ate Maui naman po, ang sabi niya sa akin, dapat wala akong hiya, wala akong pakialam sa sasabihin ng ibang tao. Dapat isipin ko ako lang tao sa mundo.
"Sa movie mismo parang natural yung pagturo nila sa akin kung paano maging sexy kasi nag-start pa lang ako [sa showbiz]."
After Pornstar, AJ was given consecutive starring roles in the movies that were streamed on Vivamax, the streaming site owned by VIVA.
Still based on PEP Live's January episode, AJ said, "Maganda yung feedback sa akin nina Boss Vic. Nagsunud-sunod yung projects ko."
AJ GOES ALL-OUT DARING
Determined to make a name for herself in showbiz, AJ made no qualms about doing breast exposure when she starred in Death of A Girlfriend.
Helmed by Yam Laranas, Death of A Girlfriend is a thriller film where AJ's character Christine gets killed in the forest where she usually walks on her way to school.
But before her tragic death, Christine seemingly establishes a romantic relationship with her schoolmate Alonzo, played by Diego Loyaga.
In a virtual presscon last April, AJ didn't hesitate to say that she only wore cycling shorts for her love scenes with Diego in the movie.
"Naka-cycling shorts lang po kami, pero alaga naman po ako ni Direk. Hindi naman po ako nabastos dun," AJ said.
When prodded if she got carried away by the steamy love scenes, AJ simply replied, "Wala naman po akong naramdaman. Work lang po."
While Death of A Girlfriend has a dark and heavy plot, it proved to be a good vehicle for AJ's first movie.
She gave a convincing portrayal of a worldly teenage student who's up for some naughty experiences.
Then she starred in another sexy movie Taya, where she played the leading lady of Sean De Guzman. Taya started streaming in Vivamax this September, and was directed by Roman Perez Jr.
In the story, AJ's character Nanette is a prostitute who develops a romantic relationship with Sean's character Sixto, who's a consummate online gambler.
This time, AJ did more steamy love scenes with Sean that are said to be similar to the love scenes in the popular '80s bold movie Scorpio Nights.
AJ also did breast exposure for this movie.
AJ CHOOSES CAREER OVER LOVE
AJ's daring roles took a toll on her love life.
Back in May, she admitted to having a relationship with former Pinoy Big Brother: All In housemate Axel Torres.
But they called it quits in June.
She first spoke about it when she did an interview for PEP Live together with Sean last August 5.
AJ said, "Yes po, nagkaroon po ako ng relationship kay Axel, pero wala na rin po kami ngayon. Nagbreak po kami."
In a virtual mediacon for Taya on August 20, AJ revealed that her sexy image and her leading man Sean were the reasons for her breakup with Axel.
AJ went on to say that she understood if Axel had trouble accepting her sexy image since she was not yet in showbiz when they became a couple.
It was supposed to be their second anniversary this September.
But it was also very clear to AJ that her showbiz career is her priority at this point in her life.
Ever direct-to-the-point, AJ underlined, "Gusto ko pong ipagpatuloy yung karera ko. Gusto ko pong sumugal sa karera ko kaysa sa love life."
Even AJ's father Jeric was against her decision to go the sexy route.
In an exclusive interview with Cabinet Files last January, Jeric said: "Bilang ama, walang may gusto na yung anak niya ay nagpapakita ng balat at pa-sexy, kasi alam ko kung ano ang naglalaro sa isipan ng mga lalakeng manyak.
"Ayokong dumating sa punto na baka mabastos ang anak ko at ako pa ang masisi."
But AJ stood her ground.
At the story conference for Taya last June, AJ said, "Tinanggap na nila na nagpapaseksi ako, lalo na po yung tatay ko. Alam ko na naiintindihan niya dahil artista rin siya.
"Ang lagi lang nilang sinasabi sa akin ngayon, magpakabait at galingan ko ang acting."
UNFAZED BY BASHERS
AJ is nothing but grateful for all the movie projects being entrusted to her by VIVA.
"Siyempre sobrang saya ko," she told PEP Live in August.
At the same time, she is aware that she needs to be strong enough to take on the criticism that comes with being a rising star.
"Ni-ready ko yung mental health ko.
"Kasi sa mga nakaraang projects ko, di ko maiwasan before na maapektuhan sa sasabihin ng ibang tao.
"Pero tuluy-tuloy po ang projects, natututo ako sa mga nangyayari."
Rather than be put down by detractors, AJ focuses on how showbiz opened a lot of opportunities for her.
"Dati kasi napaka-introvert kong tao. Never ako kakausap, sa set nasa side lang po ako.
"Pero ngayon po, hindi lang sa career ko, pati sa mga pakikisama sa mga nakikilala kong bagong kaibigan.
"Dumadami yung kaibigan ko, at the same time, umaangat yung career ko."
Is there any actress whose career path she wants to emulate?
AJ replied, "Sinasabi kasi sa akin nila Boss Vic, parang Ina Raymundo raw po ako ngayon.
"Well, okay po sa akin yun. Gusto ko po si Ms. Ina.
"Pero siyempre, gusto ko ng sariling name. Gusto ko rin ng ginagawa akong tao dahil totoong tao po ako.
"Wala akong pinapakitang fake. Yun ang gusto kong tularan sa akin ng mga tao."
- Sons of Nanay Sabel as an extra (2019)
- Indak as an island friend (2019)
- Pornstar as Twinkle (2021)
- Death of A Girlfriend as Christine (2021)
- Nerisa as Lilet (2021)
- Taya as Nannette (2021)
- Shoot! Shoot! (2021)
- It's Showtime as searchee in "Kaparewho" (2020)
- Minute To Win It as player (2020)
- FPJ's Ang Probinsyano as PCpt. Andrea Villar (2021)