DUALITY: Directing Duo Readies Female-Centric Malaysian Martial Arts Action Sci-Fi Thriller

Knightsbridge Entertainment and Metal Cut Film Productions held a press conference recently at The Bee @ Publika in Kuala Lumpur for the new sci-fi action thriller, Duality. The local Malaysian production is hailing its cast and crew with a round of fresh faces to accompany its raft of commercial TV and film veterans behind the lens with VFX talents, executive producer and award winning director Timo (The Attack of the Mutant Flower Crab) and Metal Cut's own Wynner Cheong at the helm.

Leading the cast is actress Sylvia Tan from a script by Jason Ding (The Tailor-Made Man, Something Playing in My Ear, Esther) which tells a dystopian tale of Miss Red, an amnesiac who awakens to unknown whereabouts, and a mysterious set of skills that become vital to her survival as she fights to seek answers about who she is, why she was displaced, and the person(s) responsible. Tan, a model since the age of 16 and brand ambassador to Stone and Co. and work credits that include Owled, Ohnii and Calvin Klein, sets Duality as her feature acting debut.

“The film is a passion project,” said Timo and executive producer Joseph Tang. “It’s always been a dream of mine to produce a female-lead action film that is packed with fight scenes. There’s something so captivating about strong women, especially in this time and age when women are pushing for equality.”

Starring opposite Tan is actress Serene Claire, first runner up at Miss World Malaysia Pageant in 2015 and a Top 8 entry in last year's Miss Astro Chinese International Pageant, making her own debut as Miss Jane, Miss Red's nemesis. Muay Thai and BJJ proponent, local Brazilian actor Marcio Sebsam (Mortal Enemies a.k.a. Pirate Brothers, Netflix series Marco Polo) plays Boyd, Miss Jane's superior and the ring leader for Kill Squad Six (KISS), and the man responsible for Red's troubles.

Dara Yong Sophie, a certified personal trainer with experience in modeling and physical fitness will play Thracia, a woman of few words who can do massive destruction. Eurasian model-turned-TV actress personality Sharlin Dian (Astro Battleground, Nasi Lemak 2.0, Love You You) rounds out the cast in her first bad girl role as Neve, a tactical expert who never forgets and never forgives.

On board for the fight action is choreographer Chin Chun Ket, born in Sabah and a University of Wolverhampton graduate with a degree in illustration, and a background in music and body movement following his membership in Malaysia performing arts troupe, Hands Percussion, through 2014. Ket was present at the press conference highlighting the strenuous training regiment the cast underwent in getting combat ready. 

“Women fight differently, but they can be just as dangerous when they are trained properly,” said Chin who also stated the process as challenging but exciting.

“The cast all had to dedicate a great deal of their time to getting physically fit and fight ready,” said Timo providing insight on the four-month process in preparing the cast for their roles. “Besides mixed-martial arts, they are also trained in Krav Maga, tactical firearms, edge weapons and knives defence, and kickboxing. Training was a full-time ordeal for everyone, including us, the directors and producers.”

The conference also featured MMA demonstrations by Team X Academy in addition to a staged fight scene between Ket and lead actress Tan. The event wrapped up with a lucky draw, giving away 10 goodie bags of Duality merchandises, including t-shirt, a cap, HairWorx discount voucher, MoltoBene products voucher, and one-week free personal training at Team X Academy.

Timo launched his directorial debut in 2003 with Six, earming him the Cyberjaya Digital Video Award and a Silver for Malaysia Video Award. His 2008 film, Burger Boy, earned an official spot at the Official Selection Cannes Short Film Corner. Cheong, co-founder and creative director at Motionmancer, Metal Cut Film Productions and Nightchaser Photography Studio, has almost two decades of experience in TV, film, commercials and VFX, working with Chroma Key, 3D camera tracking, background replacement/extensions, and wire removals.

Prior to the BTS footage, the press conference warmed up the crowd with a montage of character images. All are viewable in the player below starting at around the 45-minute mark with the event itself beginning at 54 minutes in. Enjoy!

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