Jack Neo has returned to his TV roots. Sorta. Kinda.
Jack, a small screen fixture in the late 1990s — on the Channel 8 variety show Comedy Night — before becoming one of Singapore’s most successful filmmaker, kept his creative juices flowing during the Circuit Breaker period by hosting a series of live Facebook chats. (He’s only been busy putting together the second sequel to his 1998 breakout Money No Enough.)
Responding to 8days.sg’s queries in Mandarin via Whatsapp, Jack likens the live chats to a TV talk show, featuring interviews and video playback.
If you swing by Jack’s Facebook account, you can see that the man is on a roll — he churns out one show almost every other day. His guests so far include his kaki Mark Lee and Henry Thia, Christopher Lee, Eric Moo and the cast members of his movies.
A self-confessed tech geek, Jack, 60, has also been sharing his live-streaming knowledge to retired artistes who “have nothing to do” or are technophobes. “I think technology scares a lot of people,” he says. “I try my best not to stay stagnant and keep on learning new things.”
Meanwhile, Jack can’t wait for the CB measures to be eased. In a recent live chat, he hoped the cinemas — shuttered since Mar 27 — will reopen by August. Because that’s the best time to release his magnum opus, Not So Long Time Ago, the third chapter of his nation-building saga that started with Long Long Time Ago and Long Long Time Ago 2, both came out in 2016.
This month, the first two movies, about the trials and tribulations of a family from the 1960s to the early 1970s, added to the Lights. Camera. Singapore collection on meWATCH. Here, we ask Jack about his memories making them, his virtual talk show endeavours and the possibility of making a creature-feature.