09 Feb 2018
Hong Ling is “sian” of Nick Teo
Come May, Toggle Original Love At Cavenagh Bridge will make its debut – featuring a host of real-life (think Andie Chen and Kate Pang, along with Shane Pow and Kimberly Wang) and reel-life couples, each episode will revolve around the respective love stories of 10 different couples at the bridge.
Pairing up again after working together on 118 are Nick Teo and Hong Ling, and Toggle headed down to the bridge on February 2 to witness the duo in action. They’re no strangers to each other and also spend plenty of time with each other when the cameras stop rolling.
After hours of filming under the hot sun, the pair spoke to us during their lunch break, and told us a bit more about their characters, what they really think about working together again, and what they think are the best ‘selling points’ of the opposite party as a romantic partner.
We also addressed the white elephant in the room (last we checked, it’s wearing a pink tutu and dancing the flamenco) and asked them point blank about their dating rumours after hearing several firsthand accounts from eyewitnesses.
So, are they dating - or not? We hear it from Nick and Hong Ling. Read on for more.
(Continued on next slide: Hong Ling and yet another ‘bimbo’ role)
09 Feb 2018
Hong Ling and yet another ‘bimbo’ role
When asked to describe their respective characters, Hong Ling heaved a sigh of mock exasperation and mused, “My character isn’t too different from what I’ve done in the past. The director told me, ‘You can just act as a bimbo!’ In 118, my character was also quite bimbo, maybe I look like one, so I keep getting cast in such roles.”
This time around, however, Nick gets to play a character that has a bit different from what he’s done in the past. He shared, “She’s a blogger and I’m really, really fascinated with her character. I even give her a teddy bear when she wins an award so she has quite a deep impression of it. We ended up going on a date of sorts, but there’s a plot twist at the end and I’m not just the simple stalker that she thinks that I am…”
At this point, Hong Ling chimed in, “If you look at his face, this character is totally him – he doesn’t even need to act to pull off this role! He looks a bit creepy with the glasses on, so this character is really suited for him.”
With Nick’s character being an over-zealous fan (we won’t give away too many details), we asked if the pair has ever encountered similar supporters in real life, to which they said no (thankfully) and that their fans have always been supportive of them in only the best ways.
(Continued on next slide: The one time Hong Ling encountered a stalker)
09 Feb 2018
The one time Hong Ling encountered a stalker
Nick shared, “I’ve met fans that have given us food and drinks – I think every celeb encounters that. They’re always there to support us for our events but I haven’t encountered anyone who’s as obsessed as my character in the show.” Hong Ling added, “I’ve also received stuffed toys from fans, but after working on this show, I have to think twice about it.”
The reason for her worry is warranted, as she revealed her creepy encounter with a stalker.
“I was stalked before I entered showbiz,” she let on. “I was going home after my gym session one night and someone took the same lift as me up to the top floor. I was wondering which unit he was living at and I was a bit worried since I never saw him before so I kept watching him. He followed me to near to my unit, which is a corner unit, before he took the stairs down instead. I’m quite sure he was following me, so I was quite scared after that. Thankfully, it was only that one time.”
(Continued on next slide: Why is Hong Ling “sian” of Nick Teo?)
09 Feb 2018
Why is Hong Ling “sian” of Nick Teo?
Given that the pair has worked together so often, we figured that they’d be more than happy to be paired up again – alas, Hong Ling thought otherwise.
She glanced at Nick before starting, “We’ve worked on so many projects together, so when I see him I also get a bit sian (it means bored in Hokkien). We worked together so many times. Even before 118, we entered showbiz together and we worked on a lot of smaller-scale projects together. We filmed something called Sago Lane (死人街) together but I’m not sure if it ever got released.”
Nick continued, “We see each other around all the time, and we keep working on the same projects. Even though we’ve never acted as a reel-life couple, but we just keep crossing paths.”
However, it looks like the boredom might be forgiven – at least, on Hong Ling’s end, as she thought about it a bit more and let on ,”Even though I’m sian, I think I’d prefer working with people that I’m comfortable with. For example, in Fifty & Fabulous, I’m paired up with Edwin (Goh), so we have to work on the chemistry from scratch, which is a bit difficult. With Nick, we can just directly tell each other what we want to do and we don’t have to be overly courteous about it since we’re so familiar with each other.”
Agreeing, Nick added, “It’s easier for us to discuss things and we won’t get offended easily by differences in opinion.”
(Continued on next slide: What do Nick and Hong Ling have to say about their dating rumours?)
09 Feb 2018
What do Nick and Hong Ling have to say about their dating rumours?
They finish off each other’s sentences and have even been spotted everywhere together, from cafes and clubs, to, presumably, build up their chemistry with each other for their shows. In fact, they’ve “lost count” of the number of times they’ve told others that they’re “just friends” (us, included), so we asked them what they really think of the persistent speculation.
Hong Ling mused, “We’re so close to each other that people will think that we’re together. I’m usually closer to my male friends – there was once I was misunderstood to be dating one of my non-celebrity friends because I’m pretty close to him too. My character is more boyish, so I guess that’s why.”
“When we first started hearing rumours of us dating, we’d feel a bit awkward and we even thought of distancing ourselves from each other so that others would stop talking about it and making us uncomfortable,” Nick continued. “After that, we realised that finding a good friend in showbiz is not that simple, so we decided that we’d just do what we want.”
After what they said, we couldn’t help but to ask about how they will treat their future relationships since the pair insisted that they’re single at the moment.
For Hong Ling, she maintained that she “might keep it under wraps or I might go public with it – I think it all depends on which stage of my career and relationship I’m at”. When further probed if she’d want to go public if she were in a relationship right now, she thought for a moment before sharing, “If it’s right now, I don’t think I will. It’s too soon for it.”
Nick’s answer was a tad different, citing the need to discuss things through with his partner before coming to a common consensus. “It’s not just my decision and it’s also her choice if she wants to go public or not.”
As fellow singletons who spend a lot of time together, we decided to then ask them what they think of each other as potential partners. Nick started the ball rolling with, “She’s like a bro – if she’s your girlfriend, you’ll have a two-in-one. You’ll not only have a partner, but also a good brother. If you look at her throat, she has a bump that’s quite like an Adam’s apple. Plus, she’s quite the tomboy in real life – not a bimbo.”
Meanwhile, Hong Ling took a long time to think before she said, “I think he’s someone who pays attention to details – he has a lot of manners and common sense. He’ll help the others around him and he’s cheerful too. If you look at him, don’t you think that he’s the kind that will make girls happy? His face itself is already quite funny."
“I don’t know, that’s just the feeling I get,” she quipped.
So much feels.