Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Folks both here on the Little Red Dot and across the causeway rejoiced two Saturday nights ago when Christopher Lee nabbed Best Actor in a Television Series at the Golden Bell Awards, which is considered Taiwan’s equivalent of the Emmys.

 

The Malaysian-born, Singapore-based thespian was nominated for his role as an architect with a troubled marriage in A Good Wife, and triumphed over contenders such as Blue Lan and Junior Han to clinch the prestigious title. He previously received a Best Actor in a Mini-series in 2012 for Forgotten but lost to Chen Chu-Sheng.

 

Chris is far from the only talent to proudly represent Singapore and/or Malaysia in other countries. Check out others who have fared just as fantastically on foreign soil:

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Fann Wong (Singapore)

 

Chris’ wife and baby mama has enjoyed an illustrious career marked by both local and regional successes, but her role in 2003’s Shanghai Knights is especially notable as she was the first local actress to break into Hollywood.

 

Playing the younger sister of Jackie Chan and the object of affection of Owen Wilson, her performance as a feisty, butt-kicking lass won her numerous praises and an MTV Movie Awards nomination for Best Fight. One publication even touted her as the next Lucy Liu.

 

After that, Fann shifted her focus to China, then Taiwan, and now, on being a good mother to her impossibly cute little boy Zed. However, we can’t help but wonder if she will ever return to the Tinseltown scene – perhaps with hubby Chris in tow? We can already see the headlines: “Singapore’s power couple takes on Hollywood together!”

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Fann Wong with Shanghai Knights co-stars Jackie Chan and Owen Wilson.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

JJ Lin (Singapore)

 

The Saint Andrew’s Junior College alumnus is arguably Singapore’s most celebrated export in the Mandopop scene. Since his debut in 2003, the balladeer has amassed an incredible stash of awards and nominations, including two nods and a win for Best Mandarin Male Singer at Taiwan’s Golden Melody Awards a.k.a. the Chinese Grammys.

 

JJ’s also had the chance to become pals – and sometimes collaborate – with some of the biggest names in the industry, including Lee Hom, Mayday’s Ashin, Jay Chou, Jimmy Lin, Show Luo, David Tao and more. Not bad, eh?

 

Our Taiwan-based homeboy hasn’t forgotten his Lion City roots either. He serves as the country’s tourist ambassador, promoting the Little Red Dot wherever he goes, and makes sure to include Singapore as a stop for all of his world tours.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Penny Tai (a proud Malaysian export) and JJ Lin giving their Best Mandarin Female Artist and Best Mandarin Male Artist trophies a smooch at the 25th Golden Melody Awards.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Stefanie Sun (Singapore)

 

Another SAJC graduate who’s gone on to make waves in the Asian music scene is this yummy mummy of one. Stef has been no stranger to success since she dropped her debut album all the way back in 2000, which was the first in a string of feverishly-selling records in Taiwan and abroad.

 

Other achievements by the songbird include singing the official theme song for ASEAN’s 40th anniversary, collaborating with fellow Mandopop heavyweights like Mayday, F.I.R and Lee Hom, and – best of all, if we might add – getting her own figure at the recently opened Madame Tussauds Singapore.

 

With all that under one belt, who cares when netizens dub a makeup-less, queuing-for-McDonalds you a “cute auntie” on the internet?

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Stefanie Sun performing in Hong Kong.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Chin Han (Singapore)

 

How many people can say that they’ve played a Batman baddie? Or that they were involved in a Captain America film? Chin Han, whose first starring role was in then-TCS’ Masters of the Sea (Singapore’s first full-length English series), can.

 

While the latter show was a let-down, his performance as a mob accountant in The Dark Knight – where he shares screen-time with Morgan Freeman, Christian Bale, Gary Oldman and the late Heath Ledger – certainly was not. Other Hollywood acting credits of his include 2012 and Contagion.

 

In 2010, Chin Han, as well as Fann, made CNNGo’s (CNN’s travel division) list of Asia’s 25 greatest actors of all time, alongside other greats like Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Leslie Cheung, Gong Li and Zhou Xun. Singapore represent!

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Chin Han (far left) just hanging out with his The Dark Knight co-stars Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Christian Bale, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Aaron Eckhart and Morgan Freeman.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Tanya Chua (Singapore)

 

The Singapore Polytechnic Business Administration graduate had her first taste of musical success when she became the first Singaporean to nab a prize at the Asia Song Festival in 1998. Fast forward to 2012, and she brought home her third Golden Melody Award for Best Mandarin Female Artist – making her the first to do so in the category.

 

The multi-talented Tanya, who has lived in Taiwan for seven years, has also written and produced tracks for other Asian music A-listers (for example: Faye Wong, Karen Mok, A-Mei, Sammi Cheng and S.H.E, just to name a few). Her skills have prompted prominent producer Jonathan Lee a.k.a. one of the godfathers of Mandopop to dub her a “musician” instead of a mere “performer” – now, that’s praise we’d like to hear if we were in that profession.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Tanya Chua and Lee Hom pose with their respective Best Mandarin Female and Male Artist awards at the 17th Golden Melody Awards.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Anthony Chen (Singapore) and Yeo Yann Yann (Malaysia)

 

Ilo Ilo’s triumph at the 2013 Cannes Film Festival, where it bagged the prestigious Camera d’Or award, was just the start of the humble Singaporean film’s world domination. From there, it swept accolades in the United States, the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Japan, Dubai, Russia and more.

 

While those are enough to scream and shout about, its victory at Taipei’s Golden Horse Awards – a.k.a. the Chinese Oscars – is probably considered the biggest. The flick nabbed a total of four trophies, including Best Film, and director Anthony and star Yann Yann also did us proud by winning Best New Director and Best Supporting Actress respectively.

 

Oh, and in case you were wondering, some of the bigwigs they were up against were Wong Kar Wai’s The Grandmaster and Johnnie To’s Drug War for Best Film; and So Young’s Zhao Wei for Best New Director.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Anthony Chen accepts the Camera d'Or award from Zhang Ziyi and Un Certain Regard director Agnes Varda at the 66th Cannes Film Festival.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Michelle Yeoh (Malaysia)

 

Not all Bond girls have been bland babes offering nothing but, er, titillating visuals to the 007 films. The Ipoh-born Michelle brought beauty, brains and brawn to the stern but stunning Wai Lin in Tomorrow Never Dies, leading viewers to rave about her as one of the best Bond girls and “an equal match” for the sexy super spy (then played by Pierce Brosnan).

 

Michelle further demonstrated her versatility as an actress when she took a graceful turn as the soft-spoken Mameha in Memoirs of a Geisha, a biologist on a mission to save a dying sun in Sunshine, and political icon Aung San Suu Kyi in The Lady. Other internationally acclaimed projects she’s been a part of are Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor.

 

In addition to her legion of awards and titles (including Tan Sri, Malaysia’s second highest civilian honour), Michelle has also made the cut for lists such as People’s “50 Most Beautiful People in the World” and Rotten Tomatoes’ greatest action heroine of all time.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Michelle Yeoh with Pierce Brosnan in James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Gary Chaw (Malaysia)

 

Born in a small town in Sabah, east Malaysia, Gary had quite a rocky, troubled start to his now established career. After leaving for Taiwan with a one-way ticket and a few hundred dollars in his pocket, he suffered a slew of harsh rejections from record companies who lambasted his lack of good looks and talents (seriously).

 

Finally, after two years of let-downs that left him drinking, depressed and suicidal, he signed on with Rock Records and released his first major album in 2006. The next year, his first Golden Melody Awards nomination for Best Male Mandarin Singer came in, and although he lost that crown, he emerged triumphant at the 2008 ceremony.

 

Gary’s been making rounds outside of the music circuit as well. Earlier this year, he and his children Grace and Joe joined the second season of China’s Dad, Where Are You Going? with other A-list papas like Francis Ng and Yao Ming, where they charmed viewers with their adorable family antics.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

Gary Chaw jumps for joy with his trophy for Best Mandarin Male Singer at the 19th Golden Melody Awards.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

James Wan (Malaysia)

 

Did you know that the director behind the original Saw gore-fest, the chilling Dead Silence and the spook-tacular The Conjuring (all of which contain malicious dolls) was born in Sarawak, Malaysia? He lived there for seven years before immigrating to Australia, where he met the person he would create a five-minute Saw short with.

 

That brief scene grew into a seven-film horror franchise that has garnered over $800 million at the global box office, and subsequently opened up many more directing opportunities for the RMIT student – he’s behind the wheel of the latest Fast & Furious film, and will be taking on The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Poltergeist, slated for a 2016 release.

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas
11 Mar 2015

Singapore and Malaysia talents who have done us proud overseas

James Wan directing Vera Farmiga in The Conjuring.

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