8 DAYS: Welcome to Instagram! How are you liking it so far?
RUI EN: Thank you! It’s a lot of fun. I tend to be a very worst-case-scenario kind of person, so before I started, I wanted to be really prepared for all the darkest parts of social media like the trolling and other kinds of very serious issues, and then I joined and I was like, “Oh. It’s not that bad… yet!” (Laughs) But yeah, it’s actually been a lot of fun and I felt so welcomed.
Have you gotten any weird or inappropriate comments or DMs yet?
So far, no. I’m not ruling out that possibility, but like I said, everything has been very positive. I don’t have unrealistic expectations that it’s gonna continue being that way, but it’s actually been okay.
You mentioned that losing your cat, your dad’s heart attack, and the pandemic sort of pushed you to open an IG account. Do you think you would’ve still done so if those never happened?
It’s hard for me to answer this question ‘cos I’m not sure, to be very honest. But I would say that, as an entertainer, I feel a responsibility to entertain with whatever method is available.
When COVID hit, I started turning to movies on Netflix and I was just so grateful that I could forget about this very scary situation in the world for an hour and a half. That’s the main thing that made me feel like, even though I could go on social media and post really silly content like IGTV cooking videos that I won’t win any Nobel Prizes for, if that could distract people for a few minutes, then my goal is accomplished.
It doesn’t always have to be very cheem (profound) or deep — I know Angelina Jolie just joined and hers is very cheem. (Laughs) But personally for me, cat pictures and cat videos are my guilty obsession, and you know, I have three cats, so if I can just use my platform for that, then that’s enough for me.
Speaking of your cats, one of them, Momo, has the same name as your character in The Heartland Hero. Was that a coincidence?
When I read the script and saw my cat’s name, I thought this must be God’s will. (Laughs) But the name Momo is part of my character’s old persona, which she lets go of after coming out of jail and starts using her original name.
You also started sharing more about your dad through your fanclub RBKD. What did he think of all the new attention on himself?
Oh, he’s actually enjoying it leh. (Chuckles) One day, he was like, “Eh, you are so popular ah! I got these messages from all over the world asking me about my health situation.” ‘Cos friends from different parts of the word would text him to ask if he’s all right.
He’s actually really okay with it ‘cos the thing I always do before I post something about him is to ask his permission out of basic respect, and he’s always like, “Yes, please share about it. Share how good God has been to me and how I survived this really scary heart attack.” He’s quite enjoying it, I must say.