Benjamin Kheng, Julie Tan get hot and steamy for Wonder Boy

The first-time collaborators get candid about their “very awkward” bed scenes

Benjamin Kheng, Julie Tan get hot and steamy for Wonder Boy
Benjamin Kheng, Julie Tan get hot and steamy for Wonder Boy
02 Aug 2017

Benjamin Kheng, Julie Tan get hot and steamy for Wonder Boy

Photos: Toh Zi Yi, mm2 Entertainment, Benjamin Kheng/Instagram, Joakim Gomez/Instagram
Video: Goh Wen Kai


For those who are raring to catch upcoming local movie, Wonder Boy, in theatres later this week when it premieres (August 3), here’s a minor spoiler for you – male lead Benjamin Kheng of local band The Sam Willows fame, as well as local actress Julie Tan will have not one, not two, but three “bed scenes” during the run of the 96 minute film, which is rated NC16.

The film chronicles three years of celebrated singer-songwriter Dick Lee’s life, leading up to the release of his debut album Life Story in 1974. Co-directed by Daniel Yam and Dick himself, Wonder Boy stars Benjamin as a young Dick Lee, who was known as Richard back then. Julie plays Richard’s mysterious love interest, Linda.

When asked about the bed scenes during a group interview after the press conference for the movie, which was also attended by Constance Song, Michelle Wong and Foo Fang Rong, yesterday (August 1), Benjamin deadpanned “It wasn’t awkward at all,” when asked about the scenes, as the rest of his cast members, Chen Yi Xi, Ryan Ang and Zachary Ibrahim broke out into raucous laughter.

“Guys, it was so awkward, I swear,” Zachary laughed, imitating Benjamin, who quickly denied everything.

“Julie was very professional about things,” the 26-year-old shared. “We had a job to do, [the scene] was part of the story, and it had to be done.”

“It’s actually a lot more technical than people think it is. When you do a love scene on camera, it airs for only three minutes but we actually filmed for five hours! The whole thing was really like a dance, it’s not as glamorous as you think it is,” he laughed.

Julie was absent at the press conference due to work commitments in China. However, we managed to touch base with the 24-year-old through a phone interview.

Just like Benjamin, Julie laughed that it was “very awkward” filming the scenes, as they had to get down to business and film the scenes early on, before they got closer to each other.

“We filmed these intimate scenes on the very first day of filming. It was really awkward at first, even when we were supposed to be intimate with each other, there was still a ‘friendship gap’ left between us. But, when we watched the playback on screen later, we realised that the camera had really magnified our awkwardness, making it really obvious,” Julie said.

The actress shared that the duo then had a quick chat with each other, and resolved to eliminate any trace of awkwardness between them for the cameras.

During the five-hour filming process, they gradually got closer with each other, sometimes opting to continue embracing each other even after the director yelled cut, in order to better portray the feelings their characters had for each other.

Click on to find out what the cast had to say about director Dick Lee

The crew prepared a special cake for Dick and Benjamin, who were both born in August.
The crew prepared a special cake for Dick and Benjamin, who were both born in August.
02 Aug 2017

The crew prepared a special cake for Dick and Benjamin, who were both born in August.

Though this may be his first time directing a movie, and one based on his own life story to boot, Dick has had plenty of experience from his theatre days, which came in handy for Wonder Boy.

“I used some of those techniques [learnt from directing theatre productions] for Wonder Boy. For example, because I knew that we had a very limited filming time, I had to make sure that the actors were ready. So, I did a lot of preparations beforehand. We had readings twice, so that [the cast] would know their character. We had individual sessions with the actors, Constance met with Ben before filming as well,” Dick shared.

The rest of the cast had nothing but praises for Dick as well, with Constance, who plays Richard’s mother, commending his eye for detail.

Similarly, Michelle, who plays Richard’s younger sister, chimed in with, “I think that Dick was also very encouraging, especially for us as new actors, [because] going to a movie set for the first time can be very intimidating. I had some trouble at the beginning, as I was very nervous and I asked a lot of questions, but he was always very encouraging about the whole process.”

“But, it must have been very hard for [the cast], because they’re playing my mother and my sister, and I was [right] there, it’s my story and I was just standing right there. I feel bad for them actually,” Dick later confessed.

“The cast members, they’re all so good, they managed to capture the essence of their characters. It’s just like with Ben, we actually met many times [before this], and he managed to capture the essence of me, rather than just mimic me,” the director said.

Click on to find out more about Julie’s new project in China, as well as her stint as this year’s National Day Parade host.

Julie has a busy month ahead of her.
Julie has a busy month ahead of her.
02 Aug 2017

Julie has a busy month ahead of her.

Julie, who’s currently shooting her upcoming movie in China, declined to share more details about her mystery project, promising instead to reveal more when the time was right.

Currently, the busy bee has her hands full juggling both filming in China, as well as rehearsals and preparations for this year’s National Day Parade, in which she is one of four hosts for the live event.

“You’ll definitely have to work hard while you’re still young. When I chose this path, I knew that no matter how tough the going might get, I’ll still have to fight it out. The entertainment industry is never a comfortable place. As an actor, I must always put myself in a very uncomfortable position, because that’s how you will grow,” Julie shared, when asked if it was taxing to handle her new commitments.

“I’ve never hosted before, but I found the whole experience to be very fun. I’m really thankful to those who gave me this chance, as this has helped me to overcome my stage fright. Before this, I was always very nervous when I had to speak on stage. I’m excited and looking forward to National Day. I know that there may be criticisms, but I will accept them all, for that is where I can know what to improve on.”

Meanwhile, Julie will set her sights on her budding career in China, as she still has some projects lined up after this.

“However, if there’s a chance, I hope to be able to return to Singapore to film a drama or a movie every year, as this is still my base, after all.”

Click on for more pictures from the press conference!

Foo Fang Rong, Cosntance Song, Dick Lee and Michelle Wong
Foo Fang Rong, Cosntance Song, Dick Lee and Michelle Wong
02 Aug 2017

Foo Fang Rong, Cosntance Song, Dick Lee and Michelle Wong

The cast strikes a pose for the camera
The cast strikes a pose for the camera
02 Aug 2017

The cast strikes a pose for the camera

Chen Yi Xi, Ryan Ang, Zachary Ibrahim and Benjamin Kheng
Chen Yi Xi, Ryan Ang, Zachary Ibrahim and Benjamin Kheng
02 Aug 2017

Chen Yi Xi, Ryan Ang, Zachary Ibrahim and Benjamin Kheng

The four Wonder Boys ham it up for the camera
The four Wonder Boys ham it up for the camera
02 Aug 2017

The four Wonder Boys ham it up for the camera

Benjamin Kheng
Benjamin Kheng
02 Aug 2017

Benjamin Kheng

Michelle Wong, Constance Song and Benjamin Kheng
Michelle Wong, Constance Song and Benjamin Kheng
02 Aug 2017

Michelle Wong, Constance Song and Benjamin Kheng

Watch:
Dick Lee: I was a monster!
Dick Lee can’t stop complimenting Benjamin Kheng
Benjamin Kheng and Julie Tan take our Chinese idioms challenge!

Related:
Dick Lee: Julie Tan “surprised all of us” on Wonder Boy set
Dick Lee faces his fear of reliving his teenage years
8 things to look out for at NDP 2017


Report a problem