After a three-month holiday in Jakarta where she ‘accidentally’ got her foot in the proverbial door, Marissa Locke Nasution’s career in showbiz has rocketed her to the verge of superstardom … it also helps that she’s as delectable as a warm plate of apfelstrudel, has deliciously long legs and a smile that says wunderbar!
With her seductive beauty and prodigious talent that has led to modeling contracts, MTV gigs, film, TV, alongside a rare business and fashion acumen that has led to a new brand of shoes, Marissa is on the verge of great things.
Marissa is the type of girl who is blessed with the type of attractiveness that could melt any man’s heart with a slight glimpse from her eyes or a light smile from her flirtatious lips. Spending a Sunday with Marissa for the ‘Darling’ photo shoot, DA MAN discovered that this German-Batak beauty is also kind-hearted, independent and free from that ghastly star-attitude syndrome.
Born on February 2, 1986 in Jakarta (then moved and spent her childhood and most of her youth in Hagen, Germany), Marissa got her stunning European looks and height from her German father, Hubert, and the sultry dark hair from her Indonesian mother, Sri Revita Nasution. She is the oldest child in her family and has two sisters, Dewi Carina (20) and Juliette (17).
Life’s journey has been more accidental, not exactly pre-planned for this Amélie film aficionado. After spending some time studying economics at the University of Hagen, Germany, in 2005 Marissa decided to go on a trip to Indonesia for “three months, tops.” It was a summer holiday to rediscover her mom’s heritage. The trip ended up opening new opportunities and a new direction for Marissa; she fell in love with the country and met the right people from the entertainment industry. At the age of only 19 then, with only US$20 left in her pocket, Marissa decided to stay, build her life and pursue a career in Jakarta.
“Life doesn’t always take the turn we planned. My parents weren’t too happy letting go of their first daughter to go off all by herself in this mega-city,” Marissa reminiscences. “But I am pretty proud of my self development. The first few months living in Indonesia were tough. I found myself alone in this big city, my parents and my younger sisters were all in Germany. But I needed to prove to them that I could survive on my own.”
With her amazing figure and a pair of long legs to die for, she started to make her own money by walking the runways for several fashion houses in Indonesia, and later, some in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur. Marissa also began doing fashion features in magazines. In 2007, she was chosen by MTV Indonesia to be a vee-jay, along with other celebs such as Daniel Mananta, Cathy Sharon and Rianty Cartwright. “I met one of the bosses from MTV on the ‘GUESS Faces to Watch’ final night, where I was a finalist. I didn’t win the competition, but I actually won so much more than that; a casting for the MTV vee-jay position. Since that day, my life changed dramatically and sometimes it still feels like a rollercoaster.”
Movies and more
When the modeling world no longer offered enough challenge for Marissa, she decided to make her move into the film and TV industry. She started by playing “pretty girl” roles in a handful of comedy films such as 2007’s Namaku Dick (My Name is Dick) and TV shows such as Ojek Bang Jeck and Naga Bukan Bonar, both in 2008. Since then, many people (including many of those faux-puritan tabloid hacks) have been blathering on and gossiping about her figure-revealing roles and her seductive poses in some of those risqué “men’s” magazines. Then, of course, they jump to all sorts of conclusions and labels such as ‘sex symbol.’ “People tend to categorize too much … I personally don’t think I have as much sex appeal as those [other men’s mag] girls have. In fact, I like my eyes better than any of my other body parts. I think they’re the most appealing parts of me.”
Currently, Marissa is also hosting a music program on TV called Mantap and shooting for Getting Married 2, as well as the TV Series Manohara, where she plays one of the key protagonists, unlike her stereotyped roles of previous acting gigs. “This is the reason I took the offer in this TV Series, not because it’s Manohara. The character is different and it’s a challenge for me. So it is not always about the money, it’s about experience.”
Some of the aforementioned gossipers have also labeled Marissa opportunistic, but it doesn’t bother her much. “One thing I learned in life is that opportunity comes when it’s least expected and who am I to say ‘no’ when one comes? And anyway, changes in life are good, so we can learn something new each and every day.”
While Marissa is making her mark as an accomplished actress and model, she is also on the verge of taking the fashion world by storm. When it comes to clothes, Marissa is quite spontaneous. She can easily jump from Roberto Cavalli or Gucci to vintage attire often found in bohemian second-hand shops. She showed up on location in her casual-funk gear—white tank top, miniskirt, accentuated with ‘Boho’ shawl and black ankle boots. “My style is pretty much modern, classy, but timeless,” she adds. We found her to be a person with an incredibly intense passion for the latest styles, and definitely someone with great fashion sense. So, it’s no wonder that she is starting her own fashion label. Marissa has been busy getting her own line of shoes off the ground, named MLN (her initials). Her fashion statement is associated with her taste in shoes; “High heels less than four inches (10 centimeters) aren’t considered high heels,” she asserts.
Same thing with men, “Judge a man by his shoes!” she laughs. Loyalty, spontaneity, humor and fabulous personality are the qualities Marissa considers important for her man, but also, “It could be the way he talks, the way he walks or even his smile. It’s the whole package.”
Since coming to Jakarta and becoming adept at succeeding in the entertainment business here, Marissa has become an experienced veteran of the industry, but that does not stop her form still enjoying it and loving her life. “One of my sisters is visiting right now and she started to like living here in Jakarta. My parents are starting to get worried, that I might ‘kidnap’ their other daughters,” she grins.
When we asked her about how she sees herself 10 years from now, Marissa candidly replies, “Still good looking, I hope! And I want to be healthy with a wonderful family and on the top of my career … or maybe I could be the president of Indonesia. That will work too, I guess,” She laughs.
Photographs: Timur Angin
SHARE THIS ARTICLE