Mother fig­ure

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - MOVIES -

WATCH out for Jack Neo as Karen Neo in Home­com­ing. “I am Aniu’s mum in the movie,” said the Sin­ga­porean star, who’s back af­ter a sev­en­month hia­tus fol­low­ing the rev­e­la­tion of his ex­tra­mar­i­tal af­fairs in March.

“I was sup­posed to lose some weight for the role, but it’s too late now for that.”

How­ever, Neo, whose up­com­ing movies also in­clude The Ghost Bride, is quick to as­sure that he looks good as a fiftysome­thing aun­tie. “I couldn’t even recog­nise my­self af­ter they did my make-up. My make-up artist is amaz­ing.”

No stranger to cross-dress­ing, the multi-tal­ented Sin­ga­porean ac­tor/di­rec­tor/play­wright/pro­ducer is noted for his amus­ing, over-the-top portrayal of granny Liang Po Po and her younger self, Liang Ximei, in the hit TV show Com­edy Night in the late 1990s.

“But I haven’t been do­ing films with Mark (Lee, his long­time col­lab­o­ra­tor) for a while,” the 50year-old re­lated. “He used to be my son. But now it’s Aniu. I am ex­cited about our new film be­cause it brings the best of Malaysian and Sin­ga­porean tal­ent that ap­peals to both coun­tries.”

On Karen, Neo says he fell in love with her when he first read the script. “It’s a fun role. But above all, she makes me re­alise how im­por­tant fam­ily is as a sup­port sys­tem in our life,” adds Neo, whose wife has stead­fastly stood be­hind him.

Say­ing that he al­ways looks for­ward to go­ing back to his mum’s place for the re­union din­ner ev­ery Chi­nese New Year, the fa­ther of four said: “I will eat my mum’s cook­ing heartily, so much so that the food will last me till my next lunch.”

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