Yvonne Lim may have meant it as a joke, but who’s to say Yao Wenlong’s dad bod isn’t attractive? In a recent press conference for the new Mediacorp drama Strike Gold, Yvonne joked that she had one condition that needed to be fulfilled before she would consider returning to Singapore to act.
“One of my requirements was that the male lead who would be acting alongside me must take his clothes off,” the 46-year-old actress deadpanned, before bursting into laughter.
Wenlong, 52, calmly replied: “So it was you who asked for it. My agency asking me to take off my clothes? That’s impossible!”
In the drama, Yvonne plays Lisa Fang, a woman who feigns insanity to escape her creditors after accumulating a lot of debt.
She finds refuge with Mei Youyong (Wenlong), who believes he was the one who caused her to go insane after an accident and wants to take responsibility for it.
However, Youyong, a former muay thai boxer and instructor, has his own set of problems to deal with, and his daughters Xiaoxi (He Yingying) and Xiaoxiao (Kiki Lim) are very upset.
And perhaps it’s Wenlong’s dad-like character, attitude and physique that reminded Yvonne of her own husband back home in Taiwan.
Her husband is Alex Tien — formerly of Taiwanese boy band B.A.D — who she has two children with: AJ, seven, and Alexa, five.
“Yvonne, does your husband not take off his clothes often enough at home?” DJ and press conference host Kunhua teased.
“Are you a little deprived, that you’ve returned to Singapore to see your co-star shirtless?”
Yvonne responded: “I really do spend a long time here when I’m filming a show, so maybe I start to miss my husband a little… and the person closest in body shape to my husband is Wenlong!”
‘It feels like my husband’s tummy’
On the topic of Wenlong being shirtless, Yvonne also shared a scene where her character ends up falling asleep atop his belly.
Their characters find themselves drinking into the wee hours of the night and are extremely drunk and tired.
Youyong sleeps on the ground while Lisa finds cushioning — Youyong’s dad bod belly.
“Lying on his tummy is as good as lying on my husband’s tummy,” Yvonne laughed as she told AsiaOne. “So I just joked with him and said, ‘Hey, this feels familiar, it feels like my husband’s tummy!'”
She added that she feels close to Wenlong and comfortable around him, so they’re able to talk to each other so casually.
Yvonne’s real requirements
Jokes aside, Yvonne also explained what really brought her back to Singapore to film.
One of the reasons, she said, was because she wanted to act alongside her good friend Hong Huifang. She had previously met up with the 62-year-old when she attended the Golden Horse Awards in Taiwan.
“I also felt that the script was interesting, and I’ve always really enjoyed the festivity of the new year,” Yvonne said. “I’ve never acted in a show that has that much of it.”
Additionally, everything lined up in her schedule for it — her children were having their school holidays, so she could bring the whole family to Singapore for a vacation and act on the side as well, she explained.
She added: “I always say that if I want to act, I have to make sure that my schedule matches what is required. As long as I can get the timing correct, then I’ll join the filming.
“On top of that, the character I play is important too. I believe this is my most daring role yet.”
Strike Gold also stars Jin Yinji, Desmond Tan, Edwin Goh and Jeffrey Xu. It’s shown on Channel 8 on weekdays at 9pm and also free on demand on meWATCH.