Winning the Hero Remaja competition at age 22 changed Fattah Amin’s life forever, bringing a slew of showbiz, acting and singing gigs into his sphere. Today, he is also the proud owner of the cleverly named clothing line Fattastic Raya, proving he is very much a jack of all trades.
Reminiscing about how he first got involved in showbiz, handsome Fattah Amin admitted that he was once super insecure.
“After I finished my studies, I began to fall in love with modelling which somehow led me to join Hero Remaja, and I wasn’t at all confident then about being in front of the cameras on TV for the first time,” he said during an exclusive interview and photoshoot with Pursuit recently. “I didn’t have high expectations at all!”
Hero Remaja is an annual youth icon contest organised by local magazine Remaja and has been the springboard to success for many a star including Azhar Sulaiman, Badrul Muhayat, Norman Hakim, Eizlan Yusof and more recently, Nabil Aqil.
“But, throughout the duration of the competition, I started to build up my self-confidence and Alhamdulillah, I became the winner of Hero Remaja 2012! My acting career began to grow soon after,” said Fattah.
Prior to Hero Remaja, Fattah had already started modelling a little. His first gig was for Telekom.
While studying at the Multimedia College (previously Telekom Training College), Fattah was chosen as a talent for the company calendar and annual report. Fattah switched to acting after Hero Remaja because he quickly learnt that in Malaysia, if you wanted to model seriously, “you wouldn’t be able to survive” on that alone.
With zero experience in acting, the Setiawangsa-born youth began his acting adventure as an extra on the TV drama series Memberku Hawa (2012-2013), and received his first leading role in Playboy Itu Suami Aku in 2013. He had hoped that the experience would be smooth sailing but instead received tons of criticism from viewers who said that he was not ready to be an actor!
“Of course there were lots of obstacles along the way, after all this was something new for me, something I had never done before!” said Fattah. “It was difficult, and I wasn’t comfortable at first. When it was my first time in a lead role, I didn’t have any experience and I didn’t come from an acting background. But I learned from all the criticism and grew from that. People commented a lot about my acting in the early stages, but for me, it was all a learning process,” said the former SMK Desa Tun Hussein Onn student. With his positive attitude, Fattah’s acting started gaining momentum, and in 2016, his popularity skyrocketed thanks to the drama Suri Hati Mr. Pilot, based on a novel by local writer Dila Dyna, in which he starred alongside Neelofa. The 16-episode series holds the record for highest ratings for drama series, and helped Fattah earn the Most Popular Artiste award at the Anugerah Bintang Popular Berita Harian in 2017.
Here, Fattah takes time out to give us the inside scoop about his future in the entertainment industry, his life as an entrepreneur and his love for Ramadhan bazaars!
You are an actor, singer and entrepreneur. Which one defines you, or do you prefer being an all-rounder?
People know me as an actor and my passion is acting, but, nowadays we can’t depend on one thing only. So, I try to expand my branding and talent as well. In terms of singing, I tried and came out with one song and Alhamdulillah my fans loved it! I started singing with my band before but I wasn’t serious about what I was doing at that time. Then, I got an offer from Aizat Amdan and Mel Ramlan, and released Wanita Terakhir. In 2018, I got signed as a 360 artiste under Universal Music Malaysia (UMM), which is a big label, and so I have started singing more seriously. In terms of acting, I had already made a name for myself at the production houses and television stations, but it is now more solid with UMM managing my career.
You have a love for action movies and you’re playing the character of Awang in Mat Kilau. Can you tell us more about being in that film?
I love action movies, dramas, and superhero movies! I just watched Shazam! And my wife, Fazura, knows that I’m into that. She is the opposite of me. She loves to watch thrillers and romantic comedies instead. As an action movie lover, I acted in KL Special Force before and just finished shooting my second action film which is Mat Kilau. It’s an epic movie! I did most of the stunts myself. Awang is Mat Kilau’s brother and has an important role in the war, it is just fascinating! Most people know me from my romantic drama series. They don’t expect to see me in a role like this, I usually play soft-spoken characters. In Mat Kilau, the action is more towards silat, and I had learned ‘seni gayung fatani’ while I was still in school. (Seni gayung fatani is a style of silat based on the art of war, which combines punch and kick striking, joint-locking and grappling techniques). So because I had the background, it was easier for me to do all the movements. To be with all the A-class actors was a dream came true! They are going to release the movie at the end of this year, so make sure to watch it!
Mat Kilau, directed by Syamsul Yusof (that’s Yusof Haslam’s son for those who don’t know), stars Datuk Adi Putra, Beto Kusyairy, Johan As’ari, A. Galak, Wan Hanafi Su, Farid Amirul, Nadiya Nisaa dan Indonesia actor, Yayan Ruhiyan.
How long did it take you to prepare for the character in Mat Kilau?
It took us about six months to prepare in terms of skills and reading up on the history. I got back to my old silat teacher and started to polish my steps again, started training at the gym for stamina and to be mentally prepared. The movements that I learned for this movie were mostly “bunga silat” and for me, it is very different from what I had done before. It beautifies silat.
It has been three years since you acted in a Samarinda slot on TV3, can you tell us a bit about the new drama Cetera Hati Diya?
We are still shooting the drama which is an adaption of the novel Isteri Aku Kalis Cinta, directed by Raja Mukhriz. It’s my second time acting with (female lead) Azar Azmi, as we did a thriller telemovie together before. Overall, the plot is fascinating for me because the storyline is not the typical romantic drama that you would have watched before. It’s different! The release date is estimated to be after Raya.
You own a few businesses, including Stalkers Café and clothing line Fattastic Raya. Tell us more.
I opened my cafe two years ago but I’m not the one who manages it; my family runs the business. As for Fattastic Raya, it’s my first time coming out with Baju Raya, and I collaborated with my wife’s company, Fazbulous. I have been in the fashion industry for a while now, but only as an ambassador for three years and not involved in production. This time I got involved in every single thing.
For the past three years, I have learned a lot of things – costing, production, marketing and promotions. Fazura has been in the industry for so long and I was inspired to create my brand and design so that I would feel more fulfilled. Usually, my job is to promote the clothes but now I am involved in everything, from A to Z. I did my research and studied what makes Baju Melayu comfortable, I learned more about the detailed designs and quality materials.
You had to go through some challenges with your business recently, with stockist issues. What kept you going?
Any business that you handle has its ups and downs, sometimes things don’t go your way. Don’t ever feel that giving up is an option, instead you must push yourself to be better. If we don’t hold on to the passion for what we are doing and keep sticking to that dream, every time we encounter some problem, we will run from it. Being a celebrity, you will face tons of gossip and controversy, all these things make you stronger and there is always something you can learn. I always look on the bright side of things – a lesson for me to keep going and be a better person. A support system is important too! Family, friends and fans are always there for me and that motivates me to move forward.
We are celebrating Ramadhan this month. What does Ramadhan mean to you?
For me, Ramadhan is a month for us to earn countless blessings and rewards, learn to fast and how to abstain from consuming food and drink. But it’s more than that, as part of it also makes one realise how hard it is for some people to get food. I hope to go to Solat Sunat Terawih (pray) every single day and do more Amal Ibadah and Jariah (good deeds).
What types of food are you looking forward to getting at the Ramadhan bazaar?
Everyone is looking forward to going to the Ramadhan bazaars! But, unfortunately celebrities don’t get to visit any of them. I used to go to the one located in the Setiawangsa area – as the eldest child, I rode my bike to the bazaar and bought all the food to take home. I miss those moments, eating all the good food like murtabak, ayam percik and kuih muih! So, because we don’t get those opportunities anymore, we usually get help from our assistant to buy these things for us, if we have shooting going on and such.
It has been almost two years since you got married to Fazura, what do you love about being married?
Home cooked meals! I love Fazura’s cooking, but we are both busy even during Ramadhan as we have different schedules. If we have time to spend together, Faz will cook and I will ask her to prepare the same dishes – udang goreng petai, kailan and fried eggs – I can eat this every day! Then, she will say that it’s easy to take care of me and we will be together forever.
Last year you said that you are going to work together with Fazura on a duet, when would it become a reality and are there any plans for you to do a full album soon?
Our duet, a pop ballad, came out on April 19, and the song is called Paling Sempurna. Before releasing the full album, an acoustic version of Isterimewa came out on April 17 and has been available on all digital platforms includinng iTunes, Spotify and Joox. We made two versions of this song, the original version was acoustic and another one where Mel Ramlan added a tempo, was used at the Official Sound Track (OST) for Isteri Untuk Disewa.
I’m planning to release my album this year, around October or November, and it will consist of seven or eight songs that I have sung before, such as Cinderella and Paling Sempurna, as well as a few new tunes.
Mother’s Day is on May 12; how do you plan to celebrate?
The celebration is not just during Mother’s Day, if Fazura and I have free time we will gather both families and dine with them. If it’s their birthday, we will do a surprise for them. For this upcoming Mother’s Day, we will be doing the same thing and sometimes we will take our mothers travelling to different places. Recently, I took them to Melaka, we ate and explored the city.