Nearly eight years after starring in the film Ao Lua Ha Dong (The White Silk Dress), which established her reputation as a talented actress in the Vietnamese film industry, Truong Ngoc Anh has returned to the silver screen in Huong Ga, a crime film based on the real life of a renowned ringleader in the harbour city of Hai Phong in the north of Viet Nam. The film is expected to hit the screens later this month.
Anh talks to Khac Thi about her new role and how she relates to the character.
Inner Sanctum: You have been busy working as a businesswoman. What made you return to films?
I have been pursuing this film project for nearly three years, since director Cuong Ngo and writer Nguyen Dinh Tu made the first draft of its script. When Ngo consulted Tu about the image of Huong Ga, the main character in his mind, Tu replied that only I could play that role, so Ngo persuaded me to be part of the film.
To be honest, I was planning to take part in another film, but finally it was the script by writer Nguyen Thi Minh Ngoc that attracted my attention. Even though I have been working as a businesswoman, my nature is still that of an actress. Therefore, whenever there are film projects, I will try to arrange my work in a manner that enables me to dedicate all my time to focusing on them.
I was fortunate to have talented colleagues, which explains why I have never been worried about choosing between film and business, two fields that co-exist in my life.
Huong Ga is a crime film, which brought me real changes and new experiences.
Although Huong ga has a woman's tragic fate and leads a very severe life, she dares to overcome all prejudices and violence of the underworld as she has a strong desire to seek and worship love. Like the character, I too believe in staying true to my feelings.
Inner Sanctum: Recently, you have made frequent appearances on many media channels, which cannot be coincidental. Does this mean that you have always been in full possession of your mind and calculating in every step that you have taken?
Some people might think that something I'm going to say is pre-arranged. But, I have been aware that making public appearances is necessary for little-known artists. To gain the attention and affection of the audience, the artists must appear presentable, sincere, and thankful. This might be the reason why the media has favoured me more than the others. However, I'm deeply grateful to my friends working as reporters because whatever I have achieved today could not have been possible without them. People say that I am smart because I never forget those who give me lots of affection. But I'm not calculating because this does not bring success easily in the field of entertainment.
Inner Sanctum: You said that you could relate to the character Huong Ga. Can you elaborate?
As I said, Huong Ga's character bears a lot of resemblance to me. At work, before doing anything, I tend to scrutinise all consequences of my actions. After I get the answers I need, I begin to work and never look back or regret. If I fail even after taking everything into consideration, it means that God did not want to give me that opportunity. Then, I try to let it go and find new things to do because losing something means that there will be a new chance.
In sentiment, I always try to maintain the true values of all relationships. Or in love, I love passionately. Though my feelings are revealed slowly, I can never fake love. I'm not keen on playing tricks to build my personal image either. I found the character of Huong Ga to be similar to me in all these ways.
Inner Sanctum: What are your expectations from this film and is this role exciting enough to attract you to accept more roles like this one?
I do not expect this role to be an impressive one or bring me any award. I just think that an actress does not always get good opportunities. So, whenever there is one, she should seize it and make it a turning point in her career. I believe this role is important for my acting career. If I'm offered other interesting roles after this film, I will certainly accept the offers. No matter what happens, I have been working as an actress for over 20 years, so acting has become part of my blood.
Inner Sanctum: In your journey, it seems that passion is still of minor importance because you tend to easily give up one thing for another. Should I only talk to you about your life goals and plans instead of passion?
We need goals, but we also need passion for any work to achieve success; otherwise, success is simply a matter of luck. I have ambitions and determination and also my own passion.
My passion for business encourages me not to give up after failures in order to be successful.
My passion for acting is high enough to have affection for the characters I play. My passion for my family and my daughter gives me the wisdom to know that I have a place to rest with great comfort after facing all the tiring struggles in the outside world.
Inner Sanctum: I believe that the journey of an intelligent woman like you is a journey of constant self-introspection. At the moment, what questions are you asking yourself? Please answer me as if you were asking yourself.
I often ask myself if I have been too ambitious to have worked relentlessly for the past 20 years. Because of my ambitions, I don't know where to draw the line. Most of my friends have paid more attention to bringing up their families rather than acting. Even with modest means, they live happily. At times, I consider doing the same thing because my husband can earn enough money. However, I forget this line of thought as soon as I get a new opportunity.
Presently, I have forgotten to question myself because I'm following the call of passion. I act in movies because it has become an important part of my life.
Inner Sanctum: What are your plans after Huong Ga?
My first plan is to go on a holiday abroad with my family. Thereafter, I will participate in the promotional activities of Huong Ga and continue with new film and business projects. — VNS