One of Indonesia’s brightest young celebrities, Atiqah Hasiholan graces the pages of DA MAN with her understated sexiness and dazzling brilliance that make her the enchanting beauty that she is.
In the course of a few years, Atiqah Hasiholan has gone from a struggling actress who was more or less known as the daughter of activist/artist Ratna Sarumpaet, into an A-list star whose definition of sexy is the complete package of looks, brains, talent and confidence.
As she comes into the room on a sunny Saturday afternoon, wrapped in a lacey, flower-printed dress, it is clear why she is one of the most sought-after faces in Indonesian show business. She is stunningly beautiful. It is not until she starts talking about her new movie and her aspirations as an actress, however, that it becomes clear how Atiqah Hasiholan has rocketed up the rankings to one of the most valued Indonesian actresses that she is, and not just another pretty face.
Tiqa, as she is usually called, steps modestly but confidently into the topic of her sexiness and how people view her as a “sex symbol,” with a roaring laugh she responds with a question: “Oh, really?” With her sultry style, full lips and ravishing hair, the sexy symbol label seems somewhat inevitable. In fact, on various occasions, Tiqa has been called one of the sexiest women in Indonesia. “Oh yeah, that’s a blessing,” she says with a light chuckle. “I mean, sexy doesn’t mean tacky, right?” Tiqa is definitely not tacky and very careful about her image in that way.
She sees sexiness as more than just sensuality. Tiqa believes that being sexy means being sure of oneself. “My definition of sexy is confidence in sharing your thoughts, in doing what you do,” she says. As an actress that wants to be taken seriously, Tiqa wants people to see her as that kind of sexy. “I hope that’s what people see, instead of an erotic face and sexy dresses. That’s not what I’m aiming for,” she says.
One of the biggest events in Tiqa’s life recently has her role as the ambassador for Lux, in line with some of the sexiest sex symbols in the world. Beginning in the 1930s, hundreds of the world’s most alluring stars have been associated with Lux, including Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren, Natalie Wood, Brigitte Bardot, Demi Moore, Catherine Zeta-Jones, Sarah Jessica Parker, Aishwarya Rai, Raquel Welch and Jennifer Lopez; while in Indonesia sexy kittens such as Tamara Bleszynski and Nadya Hutagalung have preceded sexy Tiqa. “It’s a big thing for me,” Tiqa explains. Being a Lux ambassador is not just about appearing in commercials, however. As the face of Lux, she is responsible to protect the image of the brand. “I’m really happy that a brand as big as Lux can trust me to bear its image.”
Tiqa started off her career in theater, as a member of the Satu Merah Panggung Theater. Her first movie was Berbagi Suami (Husband Sharing; 2006), where she played one of the many wives of a hajji in a movie about polygamy. Since then, she has played in a range of movies like Pintu Terlarang (The Forbidden Door; 2009), Jamila dan Sang Presiden (Jamila and the President; 2009) and Darah Garuda (The Blood of the Garuda; 2010). Also a regular in the film television series, or FTV, and the newly appointed ambassador for the coveted Lux soap brand, Tiqa is ready to dominate the entertainment business.
A strong force
The latest in her long list of quality movies is The Mirror Never Lies (2011), produced by Indonesian renowned director, Garin Nugroho. Filmed in Wakatobi in the far-flung Indonesian province of Southeast Sulawesi, the movie tells the story of a Bajonese girl, Pakis, as she copes with the death of her father. The Bajonese people are seafaring nomads, who rely fully on the ocean, the coral reefs and a healthy marine ecosystem for survival.
Playing Pakis’ mother, Tiqa says that one of the reasons she was interested in getting involved in the movie was the role itself. She has never played the role of a mother before, and found it to be challenging. Even more challenging, she says, was playing the role as a Bajonese woman. “Most people are not familiar with what the Bajonese are like. It’s always a challenge for an actor/actress to play a role that is not just difficult, but one where you have to put even more effort into becoming a completely different character,” she says.
As an actress, Tiqa likes to challenge herself. She tries to do a variety of movies from various genres. “As an actress, I want to be able to do well in any genre. So I can’t choose any genre I like the best,” she says. Expanding her horizons, she is ready to try various roles in various movies.
The ‘it’ couple
The last time DA MAN talked to Tiqa a couple years ago, she was single and ready to mingle. This time, she is in a relationship with star actor Rio Dewanto, her co-star in Pintu Terlarang. As a rising star, her relationship with Rio has been under the spotlight, but Tiqa is taking it easy. “For me and Rio, our relationship is normal,” she says with a grin on her face. “We are not overrating our relationship.” Tiqa has been dating Rio for more than a year now, and their relaxed attitudes seem to be working well.
Roots in the theater
Having Ratna Sarumpaet, the artist and activist, as a mother really affects the way Tiqa sees the world. “She doesn’t tell me what to think. [Her activism] just affects me in term of how I see things,” she says. Tiqa admits that she’s really close with her mother. Tiqa started acting in Satu Merah Panggung Theater, which her mother founded. Although she hasn’t done theater in quite a while, Tiqa says that theater acting is part of her roots. “I always refer to myself as a theater actress, even though I haven’t actually done it for a while,” she says with a chuckle.
She also admits that she misses being in theater. “I do miss the process, actually,” she says. Tiqa says that although theater and film are similar, they are different, especially in the process of preparation. “For theater, we have longer periods for practicing, preparing everything. I do get a lot when I’m preparing a theater play,” she says.
Atiqah Hasiholan has definitely been on a roll. Her love life, her career and her family life seem to be in place. In the last few years, she has starred in several movies from the horror film, Suster N (Nurse N; ), to a nationalist movie, Darah Garuda. What is next for this 29-year-old dynamo? “Next is keeping up the work that I’ve been doing,” she says. “Hopefully, I will be in more good productions.”
Tiqa is ready to be in any kind of movie, too. She wants to try anything. “I don’t want to be stereotyped or typecast. ‘Oh she’s only good in drama’, or ‘she won’t be able to do comedy’. I’m trying to avoid being typecast like that by people,” she says.
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