Sammi Cheng has no plans for a baby in 2019

Sammi Cheng has no plans for a baby in 2019
PHOTO: AsiaOne/Sheryl Tan

Sammi Cheng has many plans for 2019 but a new addition to the family is not one of them.

The 46-year-old Hong Kong actress chuckled during an interview with AsiaOne on Friday (Dec 7): "A baby? No, no, no. Definitely no plans for this."

What she has lined up for the coming year though are four new films as well as a July concert in Hong Kong.

And if you thought that Sammi, who is in town for the Singapore International Film Festival (SGIFF), only acts in romantic comedies, think again.

She is breaking the mould in her latest film First Night Nerves - a drama that revolves around two rival actresses in a stage play.

"I'm glad to show a different side of me in this movie," Sammi said.

In the film, she plays Yuan Xiuling, a retired actress who returns to the stage after the death of her husband. Xiuling co-stars in a theatrical production with up-and-coming actress He Yuwen, played by Gigi Leung.

The catfight begins as the two actresses pit their acting skills against each other and vie for attention in the spotlight.

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For Sammi, her occupation is where the similarities with her character Xiuling ends.

In a talk hosted at the National Museum of Singapore on the same day, she said: "We're very different. I'm not so traditional. She listens to her husband... Well, I also listen to my husband (artiste Andy Hui). Sometimes."

The movie also sees Sammi reuniting on the big screen with longtime friend Gigi, who was her co-star in the romantic comedy Feel 100 Percent in 1996.

So, how was it like acting with Gigi again?

"Of course, we've both grown up," she said. "We're glad we've got this chance to try acting in another genre."

The actress added that she saw a lot of changes in Gigi's performance, which was very good.

First Night Nerves marks the second time Sammi has worked with famed Hong Kong director Stanley Kwan. She previously starred in his film Everlasting Regret in 2005.

"The last time we worked together I felt a lot of pressure. This time I was more comfortable and confident. We have a better rapport this time," she said.

Sammi praised him on his "deep understanding of women", adding that he was very patient while directing the cast.

"Before every scene, he explained the context to us clearly to make sure that all of us understood the mentalities of the characters."

With eight major female characters in a film, there's bound to be some on-screen drama.

Surprisingly, Sammi revealed, there were no catfights on set. The cast focused on their jobs and helped each other, believing that team spirit would make the film a better movie.

"A good actor should not be a selfish actor," she quoted an unnamed director.

First Night Nerves screened at SGIFF on Dec 7.

minlee@sph.com.sg

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