Linda fights back

Honesty, to some Hong Kong reporters, does not seem to be the best policy. Just ask Hong Kong TVB actress Linda Chung.

In an interview with Life! on Wednesday, the sweet-faced 29-year-old revealed that some journalists would say nice things to her and then turn around and slam her in their articles the very next day.

Take, for example, her first solo concert Love Love Love that was held at Kowloon Bay Trade & Exhibition Centre last month.

Looking bemused, the Canadian-born star said in English: "You know, these magazine reporters are so nice in person but their reports are the complete opposite.

"After my concert, they said, 'Oh, you sang so well. You can dance and you also sang and played the piano'. But when I read their articles, they wrote things such as, 'She sucks, she can't sing, she's terrible'. I mean, it was really a 180-degree change."

Her performance has drawn negative reviews from the audience too, with some netizens commenting that she appeared awkward and failed to hit the high notes.

But she is unfazed by these discouraging reports. After all, she has her ways of fighting back.

"It's cool because we have things such as Weibo, Instagram and stuff now, so we can always go online to clarify rumours or say what we want to say," she pointed out.

Chung was in town to grace the opening of jewellery boutique Mikimoto at Marina Bay Sands. Looking elegant in a strapless silver and teal dress, she was chatty and bubbly.

No matter what others think, she said she will continue to pursue music as she "loves it so much".

Chung, who has four albums to her name, including My Love Story (2009) and her latest Love Love Love (2012), added: "I thought the concert went great. It turned out better than I thought. So I've spoken to my record company and it wants to continue pushing me in music and to see if I can put on even bigger shows in future."

Despite the unflattering reviews, she said: "I love to sing. I've been doing it for four years now and I think I've improved. People around me also think I'm improving, so why not keep going?" Acting, however, is still her bread and butter.

She joined TVB after winning the Miss Chinese International beauty pageant in Hong Kong in 2004. Since then, she has appeared in more than 25 TVB dramas, including Moonlight Resonance (2008), Yes, Sir, Sorry, Sir! (2011) and Witness Insecurity (2012), and is now among the station's top leading ladies.

She is up for three awards at the StarHub TVB Awards 2013, which will be held at Marina Bay Sands tonight: My Favourite TVB Actress and My Favourite TVB Female TV Character for her role as a cellist in Witness Insecurity, and My Favourite On Screen Couple with actor Bosco Wong for the same drama. Organised by StarHub and TVB, the annual event pays tribute to TVB shows and stars who are popular with the Singapore audience. Chung is currently filming Tiger Cubs 2, the much-anticipated sequel to the last year's hit series about Hong Kong's elite Special Duties Unit officers that also stars Joe Ma and Him Law.

In the new show, which is slated for broadcast some time next year, Chung plays an investigator whom she said is "unlike anything I have done before".

"You won't recognise me. I can fight and I'm super tough even though I can be bleeding all over."

She found herself so immersed in the character during filming that she admitted she might have scared some people.

"Everyone thought I was always angry or something. And that's how rumours start. Journalists who saw me wrote that I was emotionally unstable and seemed angry all the time, but I wasn't. I was just really into the role."

The part is certainly a far cry from her usual good-girl image, made famous by her sweet character in the mega-hit TVB drama Heart Of Greed (2007). The breakout role earned her a nomination for Best Actress at the TVB Anniversary Awards that year.

Asked how close she is in real life to that famous goody-two-shoes part, she replied with a laugh: "I don't know, but whatever you're seeing now is 100 per cent Linda Chung."

She is often cited by netizens as the dream girl of many men, but she laughed at the notion.

"Maybe I seem more approachable. I'm the type of girl who says what's on my mind and maybe that comes across as genuine. I don't like being fake."

There is one thing, however, that she declined to talk about - her love life.

She reportedly broke up last week with Hong Kong-born American martial arts choreographer Philip Ng, 36, her boyfriend of six years.

Ever so sunny, she said with yet another laugh: "Sorry, but my relationship status now is a mystery and will remain a mystery. I'd rather keep that kind of information to myself or my close friends.

"I just think a relationship is too important and I don't want people to put labels on it and harm it. It's just not worth it."

yipwy@sph.com.sg

The StarHub TVB Awards 2013, which will be held at Marina Bay Sands tonight, will be broadcast live on E City (StarHub TV Channels 111 and 825) at 7.30pm.


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