First off, congratulations on your debut as a film producer. What made you decide on this new career path?
In both Malaysia and Singapore, I am known as an actress and that becomes synonymous to the words “celebrity” and “personality”, but I remember that before I even joined this circle (about 8 years ago), I have always been one behind the scenes.
So I want to go back to my roots and see if I can venture into production.
So does that mean you will give up acting?
I will never give up my role as an actress! I became a producer because I want to produce something that I can be proud of. Something that will be my legacy.
As one who has been in the industry for over 8 years, what is it like now?
As time passes, sometimes people might forget your role as an actress and they just group everyone as a celebrity or just another “pretty face” in the scene and that includes me.
But I always identify and pride myself as an actress, more than anything else. I believe with hard work, they will see who I truly am.
Was it hard to take you seriously as a producer?
It was difficult at first because coming from a pageant background and moving towards to becoming an actress. There is a stereotype of who I am and should be in others’ eyes.
But I believe that if I endure and fight it with all my might, no matter the hardships or obstacles, they will realise that there's so much more to me than what they think they know.
What's your biggest accomplishment thus far?
Surprisingly, it’s not my acting or the awards I’ve been nominated or won. I feel like my collaboration with Hunan TV is something I am very proud because it’s something I’ve pushed for since day one when I ventured the Chinese market in China a few years back.
Before we wrap this up, what is one of your favourite Malaysian productions?
Ola Bola. It took me a while before I watched it but when I did, it blew me away.
The way the director Chiu seamlessly brought three unique cultures into one story was spectacular. It truly reflects Malaysian culture and the unity of the people.
What are your best traits?
I never give up, I am always grateful for the things I have and I always remember who I am and where I came from.
(Photos courtesy of Tong Bing Yu)