"Losing money is the director's business" says Dee Hsu, unfazed by her movie's poor showing

Dee Hsu, who is brand ambassador for Taiwanese fast-fashion label iRoo, was in Singapore last Friday to celebrate the label's seventh anniversary here.
Dee Hsu, who is brand ambassador for Taiwanese fast-fashion label iRoo, was in Singapore last Friday to celebrate the label's seventh anniversary here.ST PHOTO: LAU FOOK KONG

Television host Dee Hsu is looking forward to trying new types of roles, instead of those that show off her cheery side

Her film career may not have taken off as expected, but the brazen confidence of Taiwanese television host Dee Hsu, better known as Xiao S, remains unshaken.

She had her first starring role in the comedy Didi's Dreams, which opened here last month. But it has received mixed reviews and its performance has reportedly been lacklustre in China.

While in town last Friday to celebrate Taiwanese fast-fashion label iRoo's seventh anniversary in Singapore, Hsu, who is the label's brand ambassador, did not skirt questions about the movie.

When a reporter suggested that it had lost money, the 39-year-old replied: "Losing money is the director's business. I didn't invest in the film.

"There is some sense that, in China, the movie didn't do as well as we thought it would. But it did very well in Taiwan, so there are some results there."

Taking a playful jab at her co-star, Taiwanese model-actress Lin Chi- ling, she joked: "It's just that Lin Chi- ling is not that popular in China."

Since the film, two directors have approached Hsu with offers to appear in other movies.

She said, with a slight tinge of disappointment: "I thought after the movie, many directors would come to me with roles. So far, the offers I have received are not lead roles and the content was average.

"So I am waiting. I don't want to just accept anything," said Hsu, who is married to Taiwanese businessman Mike Hsu and has three daughters aged five to 11.

Moving forward, she hopes to try new types of roles, not just those that show off her cheery side. In her words, perhaps something "more gloomy, like a murderer".

Even if that does not happen, it is not as though her plate is empty after the popular long-running talk show Mr Con & Ms Csi ended more than a year ago.

Since then, she has gone on to host a new cooking programme, S-style Show, where she invites celebrities to cook, chat and - for the good- looking male stars - get hit upon.

Now in its second season, the show has seen the likes of actor Huang Xiaoming, singer-songwriter Li Ronghao and singer-actress Mavis Fan appear as guests.

Given its success, a third season is a "definite", she said. "We are still thinking about this third season. Maybe we will ask family members - like father and son, mother and daughter - to come on the show."

As to which celebrity guest has most impressed her, the answer is none other than Hong Kong singer-actor Nicholas Tse.

"He surprised me so much. He is a man of few words. But when he cooks, he is so suave - I can't describe it.Even my mother says the way he cuts fish is so attractive."

But hosting the show has not transformed her into a chef.

"I keep wanting to slim down and tend to crave alcohol whenever I cook. So I haven't cooked much in a while."

She added unabashedly: "But when I do cook, I am good."

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 10, 2017, with the headline 'Murderer, she hopes'. Print Edition | Subscribe