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‘Golden Age’ Actress Dy Saveth on Success

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un visits a mushroom farm in this undated photo released by North Korea's Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) in Pyongyang.

Now 66 years old, actress Dy Saveth still retains much of the charm that made her one of the greats of Cambodia’s Golden Age of cinema.

The film star, who won her first beauty pageant in 1959, told “Hello VOA” Monday she had no idea how to act when she got started—but once she began she was determined to succeed.

She first starred in “Raft Life” in 1962 and went on to be featured in more than 100 films, although she said she lost count after the Khmer Rouge rose to power.

“I have performed with Thai, Chinese, Indonesian, Korean and Taiwanese actors,” she said. “I also sang a duet with Sin Sisamouth in Khmer and Thai, in the film that I acted in with Thai actors.”

After the takeover, Dy Saveth moved to France with her husband, whom she would later divorce, and her two children. She returned to Cambodia in 1993. Asked how she said looking so young, she said, “I don’t want to be unhappy. I take care of myself and do things that I like, just to make my life happy. I watch what I eat.”

As for aspiring actresses, she said, “I usually tell my students to focus on concentrating and practicing.”