Photos: Dion Tang
Video: Vina Chia
There must be something in the air of New York City, and it sure did plenty of good for Julie Tan who just returned from her three-month studying stint at New York Film Academy’s school of acting. When she left for the Big Apple in June this year, she was looking to start afresh and find herself again, after going through another heartbreak.
Fast forward to three months later, she walks with a skip in her steps and has clearly stepped out from the shadows of her last breakup. The 24-year-old has not only learned to love herself better, she also reconnected with her lost innocence.
“I discovered the independent and happy side of myself, which I never knew I had, after going to America,” said Julie, during an interview with Toggle at the imaging session for her upcoming Channel 8 drama, The Lead, on Thursday.
“These [lost] feelings all started coming back and I’m feeling at peace with myself – and this is not something that can I can get from the people around me; it is something that comes from within,” she quipped.
Although she plans to focus on her career right now, Julie says she’s not one who shies from love and plans to keep an open mind when it comes to affairs of the heart.
Julie plays Fang Anya, an "ugly duckling" who becomes an actress with the help of plastic surgery in The Lead. Photos: Channel 8
Once bitten twice shy, she admitted, “I don’t want to harbour any expectations or go in with the mindset of expecting something. I tried looking for someone based on my expectations previously and—in hindsight—it didn’t turn out to be a good thing.”
Let bygones be bygones, Julie is ready for bigger and better things in life right now, like her drama role as an A-list actress Fang Anya who gets on the fast track of fame with the help of plastic surgery and her movie role as Linda in The Wonder Boys, a movie inspired by the early life of music maestro Dick Lee.
In The Lead, TV viewers will get to watch her transform from a buck-toothed ugly duckling into a beautiful Swan; in The Wonder Boys, Julie hints that viewers will be in for a really big surprise as she pushes boundaries and goes to new lengths for her role as the love interest of Dick, who will be played by The Sam Willows’ Benjamin Kheng.
(Continued on next page: Julie continues to push boundaries in The Wonder Boys)
The Wonder Boys filming is underway in Penang. Photos: Julie Tan, The Celebrity Agency/Instagram
“I can’t reveal the details right now but I think everyone will be in for a shock,” she teased, with a cheeky grin plastered on her face.
So where does Julie draw the line when it comes to acting? “You can say I have no limits – my boundaries are pretty wide,” she replied.
“My parents are OK with it as long as I am OK with it,” added Julie, who is currently in the midst of filming The Wonder Boys in Penang, Malaysia, “I’d only inform them about it after I’m done with filming. (Guffaws) Everyone’s going to be in for a shock.”
While she declined to elaborate further on the extent of the scenes she will be doing for the movie, Julie maintained that things are kept very “professional” on set, a cryptic comment that, well, leaves little to the imagination.
One can only imagine what shock—or surprise—everyone will be in for when the movie hits cinemas in the third quarter of 2017.
The Lead premieres May 22, 2017, 9pm on Channel 8.