26 Jun 2018
Jesseca Liu: I’m relying on Jeremy Chan to ace my next role
Video: Aaron Ho
Jeremy Chan and Jesseca Liu will finally be crossing paths in reel-life once again in upcoming movie When Ghost Meets Zombie. This will be the couple’s first time working together on an acting project since 2014, when they were cast mates in web drama Who Killed The Lead.
The pair was announced as part of the supporting cast - along with Andie Chen, Kate Pang, Dennis Chew, Fann Wong and Gurmit Singh - at the drama’s start of production press conference held at the Mandarin Oriental Singapore yesterday. The movie, which stars Nathan Hartono and Ferlyn G, follows the story of a ghost (Ferlyn) who falls in love with a zombie (Nathan) and the hijinks that ensue.
Speaking to Toggle in an interview shortly after the press conference, Jesseca chuckled that saying yes to this project was their way of “repaying our debts. After all, the reason we got together was because of Wawa Pictures' Who Killed The Lead.” Jeremy continued, “A year after we tied the knot, the script came knocking on our door.”
But that wasn't the only reason, as Jesseca added that she will be challenging herself to a role that she’s never taken on before - a funeral makeup artist. “This is a character and a concept that I’ve never tried, and for me, doing a comedic role is a challenge. After all, I don’t know if I’ll be able to pull off my character convincingly, so I’ll need to rely on Jeremy a lot of the time. He’s the person that I’ll be relying on the most (during filming),” she mused. Jesseca’s character will also be the only one who will be able to see Ferlyn’s ghostly character.
That being said, Jeremy revealed that there are times when he “relies” on Jesseca too - namely, when they watch horror movies. “She’s really brave so I think (playing a funeral makeup artist) isn’t a problem for her,” he exclaimed.
“Perhaps because I haven’t seen anything supernatural before, but if I ever do, things might change (…) I’m not afraid of watching horror flicks either!” she grinned. Jeremy added on, “I’ll definitely be afraid, but at least I’m not the type who will scream. I’ll just squint my eyes and make sure that I can only see a bit of the screen. When there are scary parts I might jump!”
(Continued on next slide: Kate on working on (yet another) project with hubby Andie)
26 Jun 2018
Kate on working on (yet another) project with Andie
Andie, who is currently out of town, was unable to make it to the press conference, but Kate was there to hold the fort and tell us more about the roles that they will be playing.
“We’re playing a couple in the movie - I’m a stylist, while he’s an MMA fighter,” she smiled. “Andie has been training really hard to be able to spar with Jeremy on screen.” Jesseca and Andie, who play a former couple in the film, might also have a few intimate scenes in the form of flashbacks, something Kate proclaimed she will “endure, as long as the pay check comes in on time!”
While Jeremy and Jesseca are still very much in their honeymoon period, as evidenced by how tickled she is by every action that he makes (trust us, it’s super endearing), Kate deadpanned that she and Andie have been “married for so long that we don’t have any problems holding in our laughter. There’s nothing funny anyway, so we always treat our jobs very seriously and work with a poker face.”
A poker face is exactly what Jesseca admitted she has to work on, as she and Jeremy are so attuned to each other that she knows what he’ll say or do next just by his facial expressions, and they’ve been working on trying to get her to hold in her laughter while Jeremy does his magic.
“Some things might be funny when I do it, but when someone else does it, it may not have the same effect. That’s why I gave Jesseca a lot of different options and let her choose which she finds the most comfortable and natural for her to work on,” Jeremy explained. Jesseca quipped, “The most challenging part of the 'training' is still trying not to laugh - he always tries his best to make me laugh, and I’ll only pass if I manage to keep a straight face.”
(Continued on next slide: Nathan and Ferlyn are “exceeding expectations” so far)
26 Jun 2018
Nathan and Ferlyn are “exceeding expectations” so far
We also spoke to our male and female leads, who checked in with us on their progress so far as they have two weeks to go before filming starts. Director Han Yew Kwang proudly shared with us that the pair are exceeding expectations thus far - and not just in one aspect.
“Ferlyn has been going for classes and (her Mandarin) has definitely improved. I’ll probably give her 65 out of a hundred at this point? I’ll give Nathan a 55,” he mused. “She’s very brave when it comes to speaking the language; even though she’s not great at it, she tries very hard. Nathan’s probably a little more shy when it comes to speaking Mandarin.”
Previously, the pair also shared that they would be participating in workshops prior to the commencement of filming, and they were happy to report that they’ve been clocking in hours in the dance studio. On the menu for When Ghost Meets Zombie is tap dancing, something neither of them have tried previously.
“Initially, I thought that I wouldn’t have a problem with dancing because I have a dance background, but I don’t know why the director chose tap dancing for this movie - and it’s really difficult! We have to dance together, which makes it even harder. We have to keep to the rhythm and we have to work well together. Seriously speaking though, Nathan is better at dancing than I thought he would be,” Ferlyn grinned.
Yew Kwang added that Nathan has given him a lot of inspiration for the character development for his role. “At the start of the movie, he has to stumble quite a bit, and he really stumbled and kept falling down when we were rehearsing, which surprised me quite a bit,” he shared. “I’ve actually gotten quite a bit of inspiration from Nathan, from simple actions as how the zombie sits up, the ideas that he’s given are pretty good and we’ve been fine-tuning all these details after we started rehearsing.”
After hearing what Yew Kwang had to say, we were understandably concerned about Nathan’s well-being - after all, falling down repeatedly couldn’t have been the most fun. To which, the singer-actor said with a wry smile, “I’m alright; I drink lots of milk anyway.”
26 Jun 2018
Nathan Hartono, Ferlyn G and Han Yew Kwang
26 Jun 2018
Ferlyn G, Kate Pang, Jeremy Chan, Han Yew Kwang, Jesseca Liu, Nathan Hartono
26 Jun 2018
Kate Pang, Jeremy Chan and Jesseca Liu
26 Jun 2018
Jesseca Liu, Jeremy Chan and Kate Pang