Zoe Tay Plays Me! (Not)

I’m kidding, of course! What human could be more luminous than Zoe Tay?

But the beautiful Ms Tay does play a breast cancer patient in her new movie Love Cuts. She is a friendly seamstress whose positive nature touches lives all around her, from acquaintances to foreign workers.

I admire Zoe Tay greatly. When I began my writing career at 8 Days, she was already the Queen of Caldecott Hill. I remember our best-selling issue of that year was the one with Zoe on the cover in black and white. The photos were shot by Derrick Tay, and in the (then-rather-scandalous) spread within, in one particular shot, she wore a really sexy corset and fishnet stockings.

In the accompanying interview, she talked about getting whatever she wants — she was, then, the very picture of a Material Girl.

But today’s Zoe Tay is soft and gentle, a mother of 2.5, an actor who has in the last 15 years worked hard to push herself beyond the cozy comfort of being the biggest fish in the Singapore acting pond.

For her to take on this unglamorous role of being a cancer victim, I think it must have taken guts. (I adore Fann Wong but I doubt she would ever play a character that has cancer.)

I’m also happy to say the script was co-written by my churchmate Danny Yeo, who also goes beyond his own comfort zone in this effort.

Critics have mauled it for being schmaltzy, but most cancer movies sort of are (Beaches, The Bucket List, Love Story… and not just movies but reality shows too. Who can forget Jade Goody, the British “Big Brother” reality show star who died of cervical cancer in 2009).

If you ask me, I’d rather that movies about cancer were suitably sentimental, than over-truthful. The fact is cancer is an ugly, painful disease. It robs families of mothers and fathers, even children. It causes unimaginable stress not just to victims but more so to caregivers.

Love Cuts reveals the best sides of living with cancer — especially the longsuffering husband. He reminds me of my late father, who tirelessly cared for my mother and who stopped at nothing to make her feel his love.

And when you have someone who truly loves you, I guess, even a cancer victim can feel beautiful.

Catch Love Cuts now before it ends! Click here to buy tix.