Recipe for suc­cess

Alif Satar is in­spired by Gor­don Ram­say for his lat­est role as a chef.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Showbiz - By ANGELIN YEOH en­ter­tain­ment@thes­tar.com.my

AC­TOR Alif Satar didn’t want to get called out by Chef Wan on In­sta­gram for his role as a chef in the new tele­movie Me­mori Pa­jeri Nanas. So, Alif pre­pared for the role by study­ing Gor­don Ram­say’s cook­ing tech­niques on YouTube. He tried to learn every­thing – from how to hold a knife to the right way to peel an onion sans tears.

The 26-year-old ac­tor takes on the role of Ar­mand in the Astro tele­movie. His char­ac­ter has to win back the af­fec­tion of his es­tranged wife Kayla (Tiz Zaqyah) by cook­ing her din­ner ev­ery day for one month.

“I’m used to cook­ing at home for fun. But I do feel that view­ers, es­pe­cially those who can cook, are par­tic­u­lar about the way cook­ing is por­trayed on TV.

“What if Chef Wan watches this show? I’d be em­bar­rassed if he gets up­set (about my tech­nique and rant) about it on In­sta­gram,” Alif shared dur­ing an in­ter­view in Kuala Lumpur.

“I even went for a man­i­cure just so that my nails would look nice and clean for the cam­era. I don’t think any­one wants to see a chef with dirty fin­ger­nails on TV,” he added.

Di­rec­tor Aidil­fitri Yunos shared that two real-life chefs were brought to the set of Me­mori Pa­jeri Nanas to help Alif and co-star Siti Saleha – who also plays a chef – pre­pare for their roles.

While the crew was set­ting up the scene, Alif said he would use the time to learn how to pre­pare in­gre­di­ents for the food his char­ac­ter would make for the wife.

“So, there would be ex­tra pineap­ple or co­conut ly­ing around just for me to slice and dice in the way an ac­tual chef would. I was ad­vised not to hunch too much when I cut. I even worked out with a dumb­bell at home just so that my arms would look buff on TV be­cause the cam­era al­ways fo­cussed on that area most of the time.”

He main­tained that he is far from be­ing a method ac­tor: “I don’t think of my­self as some­one who is that great in act­ing, es­pe­cially com­pared to some­one like Bront Palarae whom I think is just ex­tremely tal­ented. I just want to make my char­ac­ter comes across as be­liev­able.”

Alif was only 16 when he made his foray into show­busi­ness by join­ing the sing­ing com­pe­ti­tion One In A Mil­lion. He was placed se­cond run­ner-up on the show.

He achieved wide­spread pop­u­lar­ity in 2016 through the hit drama se­ries Dia Se­ma­nis Honey.

How­ever, he hates the per­cep­tion that he seem­ingly achieved overnight suc­cess when in re­al­ity it took him 11 years to es­tab­lish him­self in the en­ter­tain­ment scene.

“Good things take a while. I don’t feel more pop­u­lar. If any­thing, I just feel more com­posed,” he of­fered. The self-dep­re­cat­ing fa­ther of two kids also de­nied that fans throw them­selves at him be­cause of his ro­man­tic on-screen per­sona.

“Peo­ple mostly say nice things. Maybe they (throw them­selves) to more at­trac­tive ac­tor like Aaron Aziz. Def­i­nitely not me,” he said laugh­ing.

Next up, Alif will star along­side Neelofa in the TV drama Red Vel­vet , where he plays a baker.

He joked about how fans will see a dif­fer­ent side of Neelofa on the show: “I think she is on her own mis­sion to be ac­cepted as a cred­i­ble ac­tress. In Red Vel­vet, she is not go­ing to be her­self. When I think of her role on that show, I imag­ine (Reese Wither­spoon) from Legally Blonde.”

Is he wor­ried about step­ping into the shoes of Fat­tah Amin, who was Neelofa’s last lead­ing man in the much-talked about Suri Hati Mr Pi­lot?

“I’m a dif­fer­ent man. I will do my best and de­liver,” he said sim­ply.

Me­mori Pa­jeri Nanas is avail­able on Astro First (Astro Ch 480).

— HAZIM FAUZI/The Star

Alif takes on the role of Ar­mand in Me­mori Pa­jeri Nanas, an ex­ec­u­tive chef who tries to win back his wife’s heart by cook­ing her din­ner ev­ery day.

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