Back from NYC better, bolder, braver: Julie Tan

There’s no time for rest for this busy bee with two back-to-back projects—a Channel 8 drama and a movie—lined up


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)

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