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Apr 28, 2017
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As if the Manila summer heat wasn't enough, Kris Bernal makes the temperatures rise even higher at her FHM cover shoot.

It was Holy Wednesday when the FHM team met with the 27-year-old actress at the newly opened Inflatable Island in Subic to finally shoot her first-ever cover. In hindsight, it could have been a big flop as everything seemed to not go as planned—the establishment was packed (whoever suggested shooting at a beach resort on Holy Week is an a-hole); weather was unbearable at 34-degrees Celsius, and crowd control seemed to be nearly unmanageable. But thankfully, we were in the company of a trooper. Kris Bernal didn’t mind, and went on to do one layout after the other like the pro artist that she is. “Game!” she exclaimed. “Ganun naman yata pag first time, mas exciting siya kasi you never know what to expect.”

What we thought would be a gruelling day for each of us turned out to be the exact opposite. We successfully pulled off the task, and it was a win-win for everyone.

We mean, just look at this:

Don’t you think all the hours under the sun aren’t worth it? Not a tinge of regret, bud!

While all cover shoots are exciting and fun in their own right, we must admit that this outing is especially remarkable for us. First, it marks the closing of the summer season; and second, it took years of pitching, meetings, and planning to happen. “Nasa edad na ako na pakiramdam ko I can finally take charge of my life,” Kris says, when asked about the long wait. “Hindi na ako yung controlled and dependent na bata. I am now a woman who can make decisions on my own.”

Kris was surprisingly straightforward, contrary to how one would perceive her in all her five-foot cuteness. “I don’t want to be stuck in that wholesome image,” she says. “I don’t want to be limited as an actress. I want people to know that I can take on meatier roles.” Kris, the pixie-like charmer we always see portraying the token sweetheart on TV, wants to break the mold showbiz has put her in. With this outing, Kris is making a bold coming-of-age statement: “This is just growing up. Now, I’m ready.”

Coincidentally, Kris stars in the GMA primetime drama Impostora, where we will see her play both the protagonist and antagonist. “The antagonist is harder for me to play, kasi parang hindi naman ako innately mean or masungit. Rosette is very queenly, napakalayo sa totoong ako,” Kris says. “Ang hirap din pala maging salbahe. Mas madali pa rin maging mabait, ha ha! But again, it’s always interesting to tap that side of you. It lets you express other emotions nang hindi ka talaga nakakasakit o nakaka-offend kasi in turn, it’s an artform. You’re just acting yet you’re releasing all these other emotions.”

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Read more about Kris’ newfound independence, her take on body-shaming, and fanaticism in the digital age. And while you’re at it, check out this month’s hot features: How to build a boat from scratch; How to like (or pretend to like) what your girl likes; and how to buy your first car like a real man.

FHM May 2017 will be available in the following days in supermarkets, convenience stores, newsstands, and bookstores nationwide!

You can score digital copies through the FHM app on Apple App Store (http://bit.ly/fhmphapple) and on Google Play (http://bit.ly/FhmPHandroid), Buqo, and the Summit Media Newsstand (http://bit.ly/fhmmagph)!

Photography Eve Baswel

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