Athlete Ricci Rivero’s recent foray in showbiz was smeared with his first controversy after showing hesitation on the possibility of working with actress Liza Soberano during a press interview.
As a fledging actor, Ricci Rivero sure is getting the full experience of show business after most recently drawing flak for an interview gaffe he had involving leading love team LizQuen, consisting of Enrique Gil and Liza Soberano.
During a press meeting for horror flick Otlum, a 2018 Metro Manila Film Festival official entry and his first-ever project as an actor, the athlete was asked if he would be interested in working with LizQuen in the future, considering he’s an avid fan of their fellow love team, power couple Kathryn Bernardo and Daniel Padilla.
While he would honestly rather not — he hesitated for a moment before answering with a definite ‘pass’ — Ricci sees a possibility in working with Liza, but only if his schedule allows, he said.
“Depende po sa schedule ko. I mean, Liza is Liza. Given the chance, well, if free yung schedule, then why not? Pero, mahirap po kasi pa-start na rin ako ulit.”
Naturally, fans were quick to call out Ricci for making such a statement, citing that the interview made him look all high and mighty for someone who has just begun his showbiz career.
One tweet reads, “Ricci Rivero, feelingero na Liza would even breathe in his direction,” while another states, “Taray, ang isang Liza Soberano na pala ngayon ang dapat mag-adjust para kay Ricci Rivero.”
In his defense, however, Ricci — in a statement to comedian and Liza's talent manager Ogie Diaz last Saturday — explained that he was only but misconstrued.
“Tito Ogie, super sorry po for what happened. I didn’t mean to say that in a bad way, but I was just trying to say that I don’t wanna go between Enrique and Liza because I respect the love teams in the industry.
“I even said that Liza will always be Liza — so that simply means that she is already established as Liza. Who am I to say no?”
Ricci, who mentioned that he once requested for a photo op with Liza prior to the controversy, stressed that he has nothing but respect for the young actress.
“I know it’s probably the way I said that statement so I’m sorry for that po. I hope you understand and not only you, but especially Liza.”
Prior to becoming a celebrity, Ricci is already a star of sorts in the sports field as a basketball player for University of the Philippines Fighting Maroons. As an athlete, he has earned quite a few recognitions from University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP), including a spot in the Mythical Five and the Most Improved Player award during the UAAP Season 80 Men’s Basketball Tournament.
While his performance in his debut film Otlum— which saw its release late in December last year — wasn’t quite successful with getting the reception it was aiming for, the future continues to look promising for Ricci, as he is set to topbill another film under the production of Reality Entertainment, The Happy Times, this 2019.