Lina Ng unhappy with her ‘Lion Mums 3’ performance?

The Top 10 Most Popular Female Artistes nominee gets candid about her unglamorous problem with crying scenes

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Photos: Tammi Tan, Ochre Pictures/Daniel Ooi, Instagram/Lina Ng

When Lina Ng, who left her full-time showbiz career to become a stay-at-home mum about 15 years ago, first told her three sons (aged 8, 13, and 15) that she used to be a very popular artiste, they didn’t believe her.

It wasn’t until Lion Mums 2 aired that they began noticing the recognition their mother would get on the streets, or the little celebrity perks she would be offered at restaurants. Even their own friends started asking them to help get her autograph. Now, they have accepted the fact that she is a bona fide celebrity, but life goes on as per normal.

In fact, when they found out about her nomination for the Star Awards 2019 Top 10 Most Popular Female Artistes(her first since 1998), they didn’t seem to care about it… and frankly speaking, neither does Lina.

Hey, her words, not ours. “They know it’s a popularity award because of the name, but they didn’t ask me much about it,” she told us during an interview over breakfast at a Botanic Gardens cafe last week (fun fact: one enthusiastic waitress couldn’t stop fangirling over how pretty Lina was). “I think they bochup because their mother also bochup - I seriously don’t care!”

This doesn’t mean that the 44-year-old Close Your Eyes actress isn’t pleased with the coveted honour, of course. “I’m happy to be nominated but I have no expectations about getting into the Top 10 at all, and I love it!” she said, adding that this nonchalant outlook is a complete reversal from two decades ago, when she was much younger and did feel a burden to win.

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Lina and her husband Mike Lam and their sons Joel, Samuel, and Jeriel

These days, Lina is under an entirely different kind of pressure now that she’s returned to the world of entertainment. “It’s exciting to hear people say that they’re glad to have me back, but it’s also a little scary because it shows that they expect to see the same kind of standard I left behind all those years ago,” she mused. “So I hope that I can at least display that same level of quality - I may not be any better but I must not be worse! (Laughs)”

“It’s a very real issue,” she continued. “I’m getting older, and honestly, my memory and energy levels are not as good as they were before. In Lion Mums 2, I had to keep scolding my [onscreen] son in one scene, and after I was done, I felt so dizzy! It’s true - I could feel my blood pressure rising!”

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A still from 'Lion Mums 3'

(Continued on next page: Lina recounts her struggles with two scenes in 'Lion Mums 3')

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