Posted: 28 Apr 2013 11:55 PM PDT
Former beauty queen Joanne Yew talks about her comeback to the entertainment scene and why she prefers dating Malaysian men.
JOANNE Yew is the kind of girl who would make you stop and stare. And it is not just because that, at nearly 1.76m, she makes most Malaysian men look like hobbits. With porcelain skin and a sultry persona, the 25-year-old stands out as a power-packed combination of a supermodel and a bubbly K-pop star.
Indeed, Yew knows how to work her magic with an audience. In 2007, the fashion marketing and management student competed at the Miss Astro International beauty pageant and took home the coveted crown.
It seems almost inevitable that fame and recognition would come a-calling afterwards. Yew quickly became the "it" girl in the fashion and entertainment scene, scoring modelling gigs and roles in various commercials, and even starred in a local drama series before moving on to pursue a bachelor's degree in South Korea.
Now, the pretty lady is back in showbiz with her first feature film, Nation Movie, more than ready to charm everyone once again.
Nation Movie, produced by Malaysian director Chiu Keng Guan, is the third instalment to his trilogy of family-oriented films, which include Woohoo! (2010) and Great Day (2011).
Woohoo! was selected as one of the Top 10 films at the Osaka Asian Film Festival 2011, where it was screened for the first time outside Malaysia.
Great Day, on the other hand, raked in a whopping RM5.8mil in box office collection within a month of its release.
Nation Movie revolves around a conservative Chinese father, Uncle Quan (played by 73-year-old Frankie Lee), who reluctantly agrees to his daughter's marriage to a Brit, Benji (played by Australian actor Ben Pfeifer).
Here is where the all-too-familiar East-West culture clash comes in. Old Uncle Quan insists that the couple hosts a traditional Chinese wedding and also to deliver their wedding invitation cards by hand (because he's never heard of e-mail), all for the sake of "saving face".
Soon enough, the recalcitrant uncle finds himself on a road trip across the peninsula with the carefree Englishman. Together, they set out to deliver the invitations to Quan's former schoolmates.
Along the journey, Uncle Quan starts to grow fond of the strapping Benji. The strained relationship between Quan and his daughter, Bee, also undergoes a transformation that would forever change their lives.
"Making the film has been an exciting experience," Yew, who plays the role of Bee, shared.
"My character is a strong lady who was sent to England by her dad when she was very young. He was forced to send her overseas after her mother died because there was no one to take care of her. She has always been angry at him for sending her away."
Needless to say, there is a great deal of tension between father and daughter. However, working with Lee has been great fun, Yew said.
"We fight a lot in the film, but he is such a fun person to work with in real life. He is a fun old 'young' man," she said with a laugh.
Yew's experiences in the dating scene also served as research fodder for her performance.
"I have met many men from different countries and went on quite a number of dates when I was in South Korea," she recalled candidly.
"But I still prefer Malaysian guys. I find that they have a sort of 'innocence', and we share similar beliefs such as treating our elders with respect and upholding family values. Also, I grew up here and I feel more comfortable dating a Malaysian."
The chatty actress added: "I encountered a lot of 'ta nan ren' (male chauvinists) when I was in Korea. I don't like 'ta nan ren', because I am a 'ta nu ren' (feminist)!
"I have also met a lot of 'huai nan ren' (bad guys), so I am feeling a little numb right now. I will just sit back and relax, and wait for whatever that comes," she said with a sigh.
For director Chiu, casting the outspoken Yew was an easy decision. Unlike Woohoo! and Great Day, which starred some of the nation's biggest names such as Jack Lim, Vivian Tok and Royce Tan, Chiu decided to do away with the tried-and-tested method and went out of his way to scout new talents this time around.
"I wanted to explore the potential of these new and aspiring actors and actresses for this film," the director explained.
"We must have seen over 100 auditions and we were about to end when Joanne appeared at the last minute. I saw her video clip and knew instantly that we have found our female lead," he concluded.
Posted: 28 Apr 2013 11:58 PM PDT
988 gets you up to speed on GE13.
IF YOU feel overwhelmed with the amount of information and news on the upcoming general election, worry not, as 988 will dispense hourly news highlights on GE13 so you can be clued in on what's happening.
Since the dissolution of parliament, 988 has been covering GE13 with a special segment called Da Xuan Zhui Zhui Zhui (The Election Trail).
The segment, prepared by the 988 news team, aims to provide listeners with accurate coverage on everything pertaining to elections. Stay up-to-date with 988's hourly reports from 7am to 8pm daily.
Being in a democratic nation, voting is a citizen's duty. 988 urges its listeners to perform their responsibility in deciding the nation's future. This week, Morning Up Cases (weekdays, 8am-9am) will feature a showcase named Rock & Roll Home To Vote in line with this cause.
988 has also gathered 20 artistes to do shout-outs on air to encourage voters to exercise their right to vote. To further promote the "Undi" campaign, 988 will be distributing car stickers to the public via 988 Cruisers. These limited edition car stickers bear the message "Tou Nin Shuo Hao. Ai Ma Lai Xi Ya" (Vote Wisely. Love Malaysia).
Also on 988 this week
> Morning Up Cases (Monday-Friday, 8am-9am): The 13th General Election, to be held on May 5, is presumably the country's most intense election since Independence. To both the Ruling Party and the Opposition, every vote counts. "Jom Balik Undi" is a campaign initiated by Malaysian Netizens to urge fellow registered voters overseas to return home to vote. Find out more about today's political campaign on cyberspace.
> The Feature (Monday, Tuesday, 9am-10am): Although many old folks are blessed with filial children who take responsible for their parents' well being, some are sent to elderly care centres. 988 looks into the topic of old age and care centres this week.
> Morning Up VIP (Wednesday-Friday, 9am-10am): Famous funnyman Eric Tsang once said: "I decided to become a martial artist because I'm agile." Yet today, he is well known as the "Jiang Mun Yan" (Game Master) in the popular variety show Super Trio. Want to know more about Tsang? Do not miss this exclusive interview.
> Music Gets Crazy (Monday-Friday, 1pm-4pm): From singer to actor, and now a boss, Wilber Pan Wei Bo has never failed to perform his best. Catch Pan and also Cantopop singer, William So Wing Hong and Taiwanese band, Magic Power in Stars Guide this week.
> Music VIP (Monday-Friday, 2pm): Now that he has established a career in Taiwan, Anthony Neely – who grew up in the United States – wants to get in touch with the Taiwanese culture. Has he succeeded in doing so? Tune in to find out.
For more information, log on to www.988.com.my. 988 is a subsidiary of Star Radio Group.
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