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Ooi Liang Chia is set on building a career in the entertainment industry

BE fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire – this is a description that perfectly fits Ooi Liang Chia, 26.

Although he has a bachelor’s degree in Law, he is set on becoming an actor and is willing to face any amount of hardship to make his dream come true.

Explaining his love for acting, he said: “Acting pushed me to the unknown. Through acting, I get the chance to experience life in a different persona as well as explore human behaviour and emotions.”

Ooi started his career in the entertainment industry first as a television commercial model at the age of 23. Later, he appeared in a few short films.

In 2017, he made his debut as an actor in China in a movie called The Big Call, where he played Zhang Shuang, a university student. He went to Dalian in China and Bangkok in Thailand to shoot the movie.

“It was my first time shooting abroad. I really cherished the experience.”

Last year, he appeared in a Malay telemovie, Jangan Curi Hati Saya, where he played a supporting role. He will also be hosting a travelogue show in Bahasa Malaysia called Travelog Projek Film that showcases historical places in our country.

“I want to make my mark in the Malay entertainment industry because it is the biggest market here,” he said of his recent projects.

“This show will be my stepping stone into the Malay entertainment scene. This is also my first time hosting a show and I am feeling a little nervous,” said Ooi.

The shooting of the 13-episode series is slated for mid-year.


Describe your childhood years.

I grew up in Jitra, Kedah. My parents run a kopitiam. They have four children and I am the eldest. My parents were active in sports. As a young kid, I used to follow my father to his football practice and watched him play. My mother was into netball. As a result, I love to play sports too. I play squash and badminton three times a week. It is my way of keeping fit.

When did you discover your love for acting?

I was 19 when I first discovered the joy of acting. I was studying for a degree in English at University Sains Malaysia (USM). I joined the Drama Club at USM, which produced stage plays and short films. I appeared in some of the productions and from there, developed my love for acting. Then, I changed my course. I took a law degree instead. But my love for acting remains.

The journey to be an actor is not going to be easy. Are you ready to face the hurdles?

I am fully aware that the competition is really intense. There are always talents who are better than you in this industry. As a result, you have to constantly improve yourself. I have been taking some short acting courses. This industry can also make you feel insecure. You could easily get ignored by the entire industry. It is important to remind yourself that your value is not based on how many auditions you get. Despite all these challenges, I still want to be an actor and I know I have to chase after my dream.

I do not want to be one of those people who look back at their lives and regret not chasing their dreams. I need to follow my heart.

How did your parents react to your dream of being an actor?

My parents support me as long as I am happy. They are pleased that I completed my law degree before pursuing my dream to be an actor. They want me to have something to fall back on in case my dream of being an actor does not materialise.

How do your friends describe you?

My good friends say that I am funny and that I make them laugh. My strength is that I always put my thoughts into action. My friends believe I am brave enough to chase my dream. My weakness is I am an introvert. It takes time for me to warm up to people. To be an actor, you need to be friendly and extroverted. I am learning to improve on this.

Who is your role model in life?

The female tennis player Jelena Jankovic. She is very humble. I love one of her quotes where she said that her value is not in what she has achieved but in how she treats people.