The New Paper
Thursday, Mar 3, 2016
The first time Tong Bing Yu shared the screen with Terence Cao was in the period drama The Journey: A Voyage. She played a concubine who was raped and abused by Cao's character.
Now, in Beyond Words, their fourth drama together, Tong and Cao play loving brother and sister.
When asked about the contrast in roles, the 32-year-old Malaysian actress told The New Paper: "It's actually quite funny to think about it now. But I'm glad it happened in that order.
"Terence is a very immersive actor, so when he was abusing me in The Journey, my fear was very real. Because we didn't really know each other, I was genuinely afraid of him and I think that helped my performance."
Tong, who plays Liang Lekun's younger sister Lening, feels her close friendship with Cao has improved their on-screen chemistry.
"When I read the script for Beyond Words, I was secretly hoping to be cast as his sister because we have already played lovers before. So I'm glad I got my wish."
Cao is like a big brother to her, she said, because he is naturally caring.
"On set, he looks after me and makes sure I have eaten, and even asks about my health. I'm very grateful for that.
"Sometimes, we will get into disagreements about how to approach a scene, but when filming wraps, we will happily go off and eat together. Only siblings can argue the way we do."
Tong, who is also often paired with actor Thomas Ong, said her relationship with the two actors is very different.
"Thomas is more like a peer. He often teases me by calling me short or fat and I'll tease him back by calling him old," she said.
"The way he looks after me is very different from Terence. Thomas is more nonchalant whereas Terence is more obviously nurturing. But I am close to them both."
This article was first published on March 2, 2016.
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