Bubbly Nadiah and zany Divian spice up Mata Mata

Mata Mata stars Divian Nair and Nadiah M. Din will reprise their roles on the Channel 5 drama series when it returns for its second season on Monday. We catch up with the zany duo.


WILD AND WACKY: Divian Nair is a prankster while Nadiah M. Din has uncontrollable fits of laughter. (Photos: Nurul Nabilah)
WILD AND WACKY: Divian Nair is a prankster while Nadiah M. Din experiences uncontrollable fits of laughter while filming. (Photos: Nurul Nabilah)

Rep Post: We’re excited about the new season of Mata Mata in September. Can you share with us what the viewers can look forward to?

Divian: I think if you haven’t watched the season 1 of Mata Mata. Season 2 is definitely going to be better … because I’m in it. No no, I’m kidding! I’m working with a great team – Erwin Dawson, Rayve Tay and Dhanya Nambiar. There are also a lot more emotions in this season, a lot more action as well. Everything’s put together very nicely and it will be, at the heart of it all, a very good story.

Nadiah: There’s definitely a lot more drama and I would say, for this season, there’s a lot more love. For my character, for myself, there’s a whole new development of my love story with Sadeek (her  love interest in the show) and a whole different responsibility as well. There’s a lot more fighting scenes that you have to watch out for. On top of that, there are a lot of many different other characters in the show. There’s Pierre Png, Rebecca Lim, Patricia so all of these is gonna be really great thing for you not to miss.

Rep Post: Mata Mata is a pretty popular series in Singapore. What kind of response do you get from your fans?

Divian: I think that everyone has been quite excited, especially after I left radio. They were all kind of wondering what I was going to do. When they found out I was in Mata mata season 2, I think they were really excited and I really appreciate all the support.

Nadiah: Yeah! We get a lot of people going like “Ahhh! Inspector Hani! Inspector Hani!”.  So, after I did that show, they don’t call me Nadiah M. Din, they call me Inspector Hani. So, I think, when people start calling you by your character name, it shows a lot – that they really enjoy the whole show.

I remember when I was walking down Far East Plaza and then after that there were this group of little kids with their parents, and the kids were like “Mama, that one the Mata Mata jie jie, the Mata Mata jie jie!” and then I just go “Oh hi, yes, I’m the Mata Mata. Nice to meet you”. And then they will just laugh with me but yeah it’s quite awesome actually being on board this Mata Mata show. There can be some people that are very hardcore Mata Mata fans. It’s like they would come down to every road show, they would bring banners, they would recognize us, and they would follow us to the carpark. It’s quite insane.

Rep Post: So, did any interesting or fun things happen while filming on set of Season 2?

Nadiah: The thing about me is when the director shouts “Action!” and when I am in my laughing mode I cannot stop laughing. So, it’s gonna be like, if I’m acting and Erwin is opposite me, I’ll be trying to control my laughter but then I keep laughing and laughing. He will just control himself and say, “Hani, are you serious this is what you want to do?” and I’ll be like (signals the cut action) “No no, don’t. Cut cut cut.” Erwin is always the slightly serious one, compared to me. But he is also a very very funny guy, very hilarious guy. He is also a very giving actor. To be an actor, you gotta give in order to get.

Divian: Lots of things. I went around scaring everyone. It’s all over Vine. It’s called the instant scare cam. So, I went around scaring everyone and everyone kind of hates me for it now.

Rep Post: Was that was your plan the whole time? To go and scare everybody?

Divian: – (laughs) It wasn’t a plan. It was just something that I had to do – disturb people. It’s in my blood. I just like to get in trouble.

Rep Post: Lastly, any tips for budding actors and actresses looking to join the acting industry?

Divian: A huge part of acting is really your research, your homework, understanding your character even if it’s just a character. Pierre Png actually gave me a really good tip – for 24 hours, you just pretend to be this person and do everything that this person would do and then you will really understand like how you would react in this situation or that. Then you play the character. So, that’s a really good tip.

Nadiah: If you wanna be an actress, one thing that I got to mention is that you got to be true to yourself. You have to be true to your craft, the work that you give. Always remember that whatever you do, be it on TV, be it live, be it meeting up with your fans, there’s gotta be sincerity. People will know when you are sincere or not sincere, even when you are acting on TV.

For example, if you have a very intense scene like a crying scene or a love scene, if your action does not show that it’s sincere on camera, people are can very easily detect like it and go “nah, that’s not how it is supposed to be normally”. Also, if u wanna be an actor, you gotta be prepared to work really, really hard because there’s very strong competition here. What more if you want to go overseas. So you gotta really prepare yourself mentally, emotionally, physically as well. You gotta look good on TV. You don’t want people to wonder why she is an actress if she looks so ugly.


Mata Mata 2 –  A New Decade premieres on Sep 1, 8pm on Channel 5.