SINGAPORE - Taiwanese heartthrob Eddie Peng has come a long way since he entered the showbiz industry with the TV series, Tomorrow. The 31-year-old will next be taking on the role of legendary gongfu master Wong Fei Hung, in Rise Of The Legend.
My Paper speaks to the actor about his choice of roles, and life in showbiz.
You're seen as a villain in Tai Chi 0, and as a hardcore MMA fighter in Unbeatable. What is the one role you wish you could play?
I really like playing roles based on real-life stories, so I enjoyed playing a gymnast in the movie Jump! Ashin.
I would like to try my hand at comedies, it brings laughter and happiness to the audience. That's what makes being an actor so meaningful.
Recently you've played anti-heroes in movies such as Tai Chi 0 and Cold War. Is it easier to play the good or bad guy?
It's difficult to say which role is easier and I think it depends on the individual character. But I always hope that I'm challenged, in each movie role I take on.
In fact, I want to play different types of role - the weirder, the better.
Do you have ambitions to direct?
I am very interested in directing, but currently I want to give acting my best shot. There are lots of roles I want to try and my dreams have not been fulfilled.
You debuted in the TV drama Tomorrow. Have you ever thought of returning to your roots by going back to those?
I've had many offers for TV dramas, but the problem is that I find such dramas usually revolve around love or family ties. Those stories are all too familiar. You'll find yourself sticking to a certain mould.
That's why I find it more interesting to take on movie projects. The characters and settings tend to vary. You have to change your appearance, mannerisms and even the way you walk.
Ultimately, what's important to me is whether the script and the role moves me. I wouldn't rule out going back to television dramas if it was for a good project.
Life in showbiz can be pretty complicated. Do you think it's possible to remain true to yourself?
Yes, I believe it's all a matter of choices. I feel that my life hasn't changed much (since I entered showbiz), it's just that I'm a lot busier. Once I finish work, I go home to my family. I cook meals for my mother and older sister.
What would you do if you weren't an actor?
I'd probably be helping my mother with her restaurant (Xiao Cheng Gu Shi, located in Shanghai).
But thinking about it, (it makes me realise how much) I love acting, and I've thought of going back to Canada to study, take acting classes or something related. I don't want to stop, I want to keep enriching myself.
Do you feel that celebrities like yourself have to be careful about what you say in the media?
It's more like the words we say have lots of influence on the fans, so you've got to be responsible and to be careful with your words.
More people are watching your language on Facebook or Twitter. It's a great platform to express your feelings and opinions, but it's also a place where people can attack you.
Who are the actors you admire?
My idols are Hong Kong actor Tony Leung Ka-fai and Andy Lau. They are my role models and I hope to be like them one day.
What do you admire most about yourself?
I'm content with my own lot. I want to be at peace with being who I really am. I'm also humorous, so I'm a really good catch!
Unbeatable is showing in cinemas. On TV, catch the Celestial Double Bill: Tai Chi 0 and Tai Chi Hero on Celestial Movies (StarHub Ch 868 and mioTV Ch 585). Tai Chi 0 airs next Saturday at 7.15pm and Tai Chi Hero airs next Sunday at 3.30pm.
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