MediaCorp stars unfazed by ATA2015 losses

Pierre Png, Felicia Chin and Chen Hanwei went home empty-handed (but not disheartened) from this year’s Asian Television Awards

Felicia Chin and Pierre Png
Felicia Chin and Pierre Png
04 Dec 2015

Felicia Chin and Pierre Png

Photos: Tammi Tan, Camelia Ting
Videos: Tay Yixuan, Tan Shiqi

The MediaCorp artistes who were nominated at the 2015 Asian Television Awards (ATA), now in its 20th year, may have ultimately gone home empty-handed, but there were no sore losers to be found among them.

Instead, Chen Hanwei, Felicia Chin and Pierre Png chose to see their nods as a form of positive recognition, and to be honoured that they were contending against fellow thespians from all around the region, including Taiwan, Hong Kong, Thailand and China.

First-time nominee Felicia in particular was more than glad to lose the Best Actress in a Leading Role title to her idol Zhou Xun, who delivered her acceptance speech via a recorded video as she could not personally attend the ceremony, held last night (Dec 3) at the Suntec Singapore Convention Centre.

“I really aspire to become an awesome actress just like her,” the 31-year-old gushed in a quick interview with Toggle at the event’s after-party. “I have a lot of room for improvement, but she’s definitely an inspiration to me.”

Pierre, who was last year’s Best Actor in a Leading Role victor, emphasised that he was not expecting to win a second consecutive time. In fact, the 42-year-old was “relieved” that he could just relax and not do as many interviews – at least, compared to the number he would have to do as a champ. “But unfortunately, win or lose, you get interviewed as well!” he said with a good-natured chuckle.

Adding that he was “very happy” for the category’s latest champ, China’s Zhang Jia Yi, Pierre said that there was nothing he needed to do to console himself for his loss as it’s all a “fair game”.

“Sometimes there are scripts that really work for you, and sometimes there’s a better actor, so we all take turns and try our very best each year,” he said. “I’ve always thought ATA is a good opportunity for others to know about us, and for us to know about other stars and learn from their styles.”

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Joanne Peh and Chen Hanwei on the ATA2015 red carpet
Joanne Peh and Chen Hanwei on the ATA2015 red carpet
04 Dec 2015

Joanne Peh and Chen Hanwei on the ATA2015 red carpet

Despite telling us previously that he would not be sporting his black rose brooch lucky charm as he would prefer to stop discussing it, the dark accessory was still found pinned to Hanwei’s left lapel.

“It’s very strange – at first I didn’t want to wear it, but when I was taking out my clothes for tonight, it fell out of my closet!” recounted the Best Actor in a Supporting Role candidate. “So, without thinking too much, I just put it on in a rush, but I just consider it an accessory. It may probably work at the Star Awards, but not at the Asian Television Awards – perhaps next time I’ll have to wear it in my hair! (laughs)”

Admitting that it might be easier for a younger person to feel disheartened from losing, Hanwei said that at his age, it doesn't really matter. "Just because I didn't win doesn't mean I'm not good. You have to keep moving forward and you cannot let these awards affect your emotions," he urged.

Christopher Lee, George Young and Xiang Yun were among the other local stars who received acting nominations, but they did not attend the ceremony. New mum Joanne Peh was present during the live show, where she presented a few awards with Pierre, but left shortly after the after-party kicked off.

(Continued on next slide)

Lim Kay Tong poses with his Best Actor in a Supporting Role trophy
Lim Kay Tong poses with his Best Actor in a Supporting Role trophy
04 Dec 2015

Lim Kay Tong poses with his Best Actor in a Supporting Role trophy

Not all of our Little Red Dot’s talents were left without a shiny trophy to bring back, of course.

Veteran actor Lim Kay Tong nabbed his second ATA Best Actor in a Supporting Role win for HBO original series Grace, in which he plays a fortune teller. He also triumphed in 2010 for his role in Channel 5’s The Pupil, but last night was the first time he could actually be present to receive his prize in person.

“I don’t think I was invited (to the show)! (laughs) The producers gave (the award) to me several months later,” he said of the event five years ago.

Appearing visibly calm and relaxed, Kay Tong admitted that he “wasn’t expecting anything” when he “just turned up to have a good time”. “I know the competition is very good because we’re dealing with countries that have a much larger pool of acting talent,” the 61-year-old told Toggle. “And at this stage of my career and age, my expectations aren’t that high!”

In fact, his idea of a “celebration” may just be a quiet night in, despite receiving a text message from his wife, food writer Sylvia Tan, congratulating him and telling him to “enjoy himself”. “Awards are gratifying because they reaffirm what you do, but at the same time, they’re not the be-all and end-all,” he said.

When asked to dish some advice to the other Singapore nominees, Kay Tong shared, “Stick to it. It’s a whole lifetime of learning, so you can only just try to be better, and choose interesting roles. But the most important thing is to enjoy it, because with the enjoyment comes commitment, then hard work, then the aspiration to keep on being better.”

Other notable winners include MediaCorp, which won Terrestrial Broadcaster of the Year for the third consecutive year, as well as Channel NewsAsia, which won Terrestrial Channel of the Year.

This year’s Asian Television Awards marked the first time the show was broadcast live on various channels across the region (including on Toggle), as well as the first time it was held over two nights. The technical awards were presented on Dec 2.

Click through for more photos and highlights from the 2015 Asian Television Awards, including performances by K-pop girl group SECRET, a quick chat with veteran Mandopop singer Jeff Chang, red carpet moments and more:

Jeff Chang
Jeff Chang
04 Dec 2015

Jeff Chang

In an interview at the post-show party, the veteran Taiwanese crooner gave us a hint of what to expect from his upcoming single, which will be released next week: “I’ve invited someone very special to come and record a duet with me. He is someone who has influenced me greatly – it is because of him that I started to learn music.”

The 48-year-old also revealed plans to perform at the Taipei Arena for the very first time on his birthday, March 26, next year. Despite being in the biz for 27 years and having thrown over 10 tours and 220 shows, he admitted to being extremely nervous about this new venture – so much so that small bald spots have started appearing on his head!

“I didn’t even notice it myself, it was my hairstylist who made the discovery,” he said. Concerned, he went to see a doctor, who prescribed lots of rest.

During our chat, Jeff also voiced his intention to invite female singers he has collaborated with before to perform with him at his concert, including our very own Fann Wong, with whom he sang ‘Bie Rang Qing Liang Nan’, the theme song of drama Brave New World. He joked that if Fann had come to last night’s ATA, he would do everything in his power to “block” her so he could ask.

“So far, none of the female singers I’ve contacted have replied; instead, it’s the guys like Harlem Yu and Xiao Huang-Chi who asked me why I never invited them!” he said. “But before the female artistes give me their answer, I shouldn’t think about which male artiste to invite yet. (laughs)”

Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Lim Kay Tong
Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Lim Kay Tong
04 Dec 2015

Best Actor in a Supporting Role: Lim Kay Tong

Hanwei, Felicia and Pierre all expressed their joy at Kay Tong's win. For Hanwei, last night was the night he finally met the actor he said he respects a lot as his senior. "I got the chance to shake his hand, and he gives off this warm, fatherly feel," he reported.

Best Actress in a Leading Role: Zhou Xun
Best Actress in a Leading Role: Zhou Xun
04 Dec 2015

Best Actress in a Leading Role: Zhou Xun

Zhou Xun, who won for her role in TV series Red Sorghum (adapted from the same novel that inspired Zhang Yimou's 1987 classic film), delivered her acceptance speech via a video recording as she was not able to attend the show.

"As an actress, I feel very fortunate to have been able to play this character. I hope to have better roles to share with everyone in the future. Thank you, and I wish everyone good health and peace."

Best Actor in a Leading Role: Zhang Jia Yi
Best Actor in a Leading Role: Zhang Jia Yi
04 Dec 2015

Best Actor in a Leading Role: Zhang Jia Yi

A representative accepts the award for the Chinese actor, who was unable to attend the show, with a picture of him in character from Forty-nine Days Memory in the backdrop.

Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Nusba Punnakanta
Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Nusba Punnakanta
04 Dec 2015

Best Actress in a Supporting Role: Nusba Punnakanta

The Thai actress won for her role in The Secret Truth.

MediaCorp CEO Shaun Seow receives the award for Terrestrial Broadcaster of the Year
MediaCorp CEO Shaun Seow receives the award for Terrestrial Broadcaster of the Year
04 Dec 2015

MediaCorp CEO Shaun Seow receives the award for Terrestrial Broadcaster of the Year

In his acceptance speech, Mr Seow thanked the entire team at MediaCorp. He acknowledged our audiences and said the awards spur us to continue producing excellent content for them. This is the 12th time MediaCorp has been named Terrestrial Broadcaster of the Year at the ATA.

Photo: TODAY/Robin Choo

Felicia Chin
Felicia Chin
04 Dec 2015

Felicia Chin

Felicia, who can currently be seen on Channel 8 long-form drama Life - Fear Not, arrived late to the ceremony and did not get to walk the red carpet "due to unforeseen circumstances". She also brought her mother, who sat with her own friends and was attending an awards show for the very first time.

ATA2015 red carpet highlights
ATA2015 red carpet highlights
04 Dec 2015

ATA2015 red carpet highlights

Korean girl group SECRET swept into town for the third time this year (after their first solo fan meeting and for a special anniversary event).

SECRET performed 'I'm In Love' and 'Love is Move'
SECRET performed 'I'm In Love' and 'Love is Move'
04 Dec 2015

SECRET performed 'I'm In Love' and 'Love is Move'

SECRET waves to their screaming fans
SECRET waves to their screaming fans
04 Dec 2015

SECRET waves to their screaming fans

Pierre Png and Joanne Peh presented several awards on stage
Pierre Png and Joanne Peh presented several awards on stage
04 Dec 2015

Pierre Png and Joanne Peh presented several awards on stage

Jeff Chang performed two songs, including the Chinese version of Lyn's 'My Destiny'
Jeff Chang performed two songs, including the Chinese version of Lyn's 'My Destiny'
04 Dec 2015

Jeff Chang performed two songs, including the Chinese version of Lyn's 'My Destiny'

JTR rocks out with fans
JTR rocks out with fans
04 Dec 2015

JTR rocks out with fans

Indonesian singer Anggun performs
Indonesian singer Anggun performs
04 Dec 2015

Indonesian singer Anggun performs

Indonesian singer Anggun performs
Indonesian singer Anggun performs
04 Dec 2015

Indonesian singer Anggun performs

Owen Yap, Asyifa Latief and Frederick Lee
Owen Yap, Asyifa Latief and Frederick Lee
04 Dec 2015

Owen Yap, Asyifa Latief and Frederick Lee

Christopher Lee may not have been able to make it to the ceremony, but his younger brother, Malaysian actor Frederick Lee, got to present some awards.

ATA2015 red carpet highlights
ATA2015 red carpet highlights
04 Dec 2015

ATA2015 red carpet highlights

When asked if she prefers being an actress or a producer, Taiwanese beauty Ruby Lin, pictured between Melvin Sia and Pierre Png, said, "Both!"

The 39-year-old was nominated for Best Actress in a Leading Role for The Way We Were but did not win.

ATA2015 red carpet highlights
ATA2015 red carpet highlights
04 Dec 2015

ATA2015 red carpet highlights

Swedish boy band of brothers JTR.

ATA2015 red carpet highlights
ATA2015 red carpet highlights
04 Dec 2015

ATA2015 red carpet highlights

Best Actress in a Supporting Role nominees Wee Soon-Hui, Jean Toh and Chu Mi-Mi.

ATA2015 red carpet highlights
ATA2015 red carpet highlights
04 Dec 2015

ATA2015 red carpet highlights

Thai stars Akapan Namatra and Karnklao Duaysianklao (Grace).

Ah Boys Noah Yap, Wang Weiliang and Tosh Zhang
Ah Boys Noah Yap, Wang Weiliang and Tosh Zhang
04 Dec 2015

Ah Boys Noah Yap, Wang Weiliang and Tosh Zhang

During SECRET's performance, Tosh uploaded a hilarious video of the trio pretending to fanboy wildly over the girls. According to Noah, it was Tosh's idea and done completely for fun.

The evening's hosts Joey Mead King, Allan Wu, Max Loong and Munah Bagharib
The evening's hosts Joey Mead King, Allan Wu, Max Loong and Munah Bagharib
04 Dec 2015

The evening's hosts Joey Mead King, Allan Wu, Max Loong and Munah Bagharib

For the full list of ATA2015 winners, click here.

WATCH:
Lim Kay Tong is feeling relaxed about winning Best Actor in a Supporting Role
Pierre Png: Of course I wasn't expecting to win!
SECRET performs 'Love is More' and 'I'm in Love'
Jeff Chang hoped he would meet Fann Wong!
Jeff Chang performs at the 20th Asian Television Awards (ATA)

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