Saturday, September 29, 2018

Ario Bayu

I had the chance to meet Ario Bayu, the well known Indonesian actor over coffee one saturday and this is the result from our conversation  

Headline: The Modest Actor 
By Bissme S 

INDONESIAN actor Ario Bayu has once again delivered an emotionally-charged performance, this time, in One Two Jaga. In director Namron’s latest film, he plays an Indonesian immigrant who wants a better life for his son.
But the 33-year-old is quick to give credit to others. “Filmmaking is always a collaborative effort. You need a good script … a good director … a good cast and a good crew to make a film work.
“I am just a small part of this collaborative effort. I am just a facilitator of a good script.”
However, this modest actor has never failed to win the hearts of his audience and critics with his performances.
He has played a great variety of roles from gay cop in the thriller Kala, to the first president of Indonesia in the biopic Soekarno: Indonesia Merdeka.
Back home, his role as the 17th-century king of Mataram in Central Java who fought against the Dutch colonial masters in the biopic Sultan Agung: Tahta, Perjuangan, Cinta, currently playing in Indonesia’s cinemas, is receiving rave reviews.
He is in the midst of shooting his new film, Darah Daging, where his character plans to rob a bank so that he can pay the medical expenses for his ailing mother.
Ario knew he wanted to make music and acting his career from a very young age.
“I was not doing well in my studies,” he recalls, and fell in love with acting when he took part in his first school play at age 14.
His parents had migrated to New Zealand when he was eight. But he returned to Indonesia to pursue his interest in acting and music when he was 19.
He had wanted to know his roots again, he explains. His parents and sister continue to stay in New Zealand.
Initially, he had a hard time fitting in, upset by the corruption, bureaucracy, traffic jams and pollution in the country.
“I was attached to a musical band and I remember writing lyrics against the establishment,” he says with a smile. But he has since become more accepting of his surroundings.
Ario survived university for just a year before dropping out. “I suspect I have learning difficulties,” he says, “but I never got tested.”
His passion for acting earned him a four-month theatre scholarship at the prestigious The Globe Theatre in London, and this experience brought out the better actor in him.
Ario’s rise to fame has not been entirely smooth. For example, in 2012, when he was picked to play the Indonesian president in Soekarno: Indonesia Merdeka, there was a huge backlash.
Critics believed that he wasn’t Indonesian enough to play the legendary leader due to his years of living abroad.
But he did not allow such criticisms to get the better of him. He let his acting speak on his behalf and his performance won his critics over.
In 2013, Ario made his first foray into Hollywood in the film, Java Heat, acting opposite Kellan Lutz and Oscar nominee Mickey Rourke.
That same year, he appeared alongside Hollywood actress Joan Chen in the HBO Asia production Serangoon Road.
Though Hollywood is known to stereotype Asian actors, Ario intends to carve his own niche in Tinseltown.
“Every actor in the world has a Hollywood dream, and I am no different,” he says.
Last year, the actor tied the knot with French model Valentine Payen. The couple reportedly met on the set of Java Heat four years ago.
Ario prefers to keep his private life private. He says: “We are like any other couple. We fight and we make up. My personal life does not contribute anything interesting.”
He also plans to go into directing but he is not rushing into it. As he says, “a director needs to have a voice and I have not found my voice, yet”.
But when he does, you can expect Ario to shine, just like the way he has done with his acting career.

Ario in One Two Jaga
Ario in Java Heat
Ario in Soekarno: Indonesia Merdeka.

Ario in Sultan Agung: Tahta, Perjuangan, Cinta

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