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CLEO Hot Shots

Updated: May 27

The CLEO Hot Shots was a yearly 360-degree project that aimed to showcase some of Malaysia's talented young women and rising stars.


At a publication like CLEO, it's not enough to just report the news or the trends. You have to BE the news. For example, that's how CLEO became so synonymous with hot hunks and boys, with the annual CLEO Bachelors shoots and events.


So we wanted to be more than that, and looked to women who read our magazines, and the women we wanted to tell our friends about. To really capture the audience's attention, the projects needed to stand for something to stand out and have an impact. CLEO Hot Shots was something created before my Editorship and when I took over in 2016, it was the first significant project I took on within weeks. To date, I've met 100 CLEO Hots Shots!


We'd find and select women from a diverse range of backgrounds and industries to give an even cross-section for readers to know more and learn from.


We've had MMA fighters, helicopter pilots, national athletes, activists, voices for the marginalised, business owners, community creators, designers, models, performance artists... The list goes on.


In totality, the CLEO Hot Shots is a 360-degree project where we rolled out the women in the print magazine, online on our digital and socials platforms, and wrap it all up with an event at the end of the month.


CLEO Hot Shots 2019


In this CLEO Hot Shots (which turned out to be the last), we interviewed 10 women and instead of breadth we wanted more in-depth interviews and longer reads. We held three events to showcase the sponsors that we had on board with us:

  1. First, an all-day all-women mini retreat where we partnered with Supparetreat to give these amazing women time to themselves.

  2. Second, a styling workshop with JD Sports with readers and CLEO Hot Shots.

  3. Third, a beauty workshop with Biotherm and readers and three CLEO Hot Shots.



Here are just some of the interview videos that were shot by M8 and videographers at BluInc, and edited by them with my direction.


Editor Lina Esa

Project Manager and Writer Pamela Choo

Project Assistants Vanessa Lim, Aina Nur Sarah, Hanan Khair, Yap Jin Wen

Fashion Direction Voon Wei

Styling Lim Lee Ann

Art Director Mils Gan

Photography Robin Yong & Muhammad Zulfikry

Makeup Kah Yean

Hair Cody Chua

Videographers Ricky Hang and Howard Tu/M8 Studio, Karen Ho Yuen Mun, Hoo Poh Xin, Samantha



CLEO Hot Shots 2018

As previous years had a very print focus, I tried to go a different way in 2018 by skewing it more digitally, by ensuring the video interviews were beautifully-produced and were of shareable quality.


We wrapped the project up with two mini panel discussions (Day 1 - Business-skewed, Day 2 - NGO-focused) that I moderated with a friend of an industry.


For the interview videos, we shot them at Alila Bangsar when it had first opened its doors and made use of their beautiful light-filled spaces. We had 30 women shot and interviewed in two days. It took around 6 weeks thereafter to produce and edit the 30 videos and print interviews.


Concept and video interviews Lina Esa

Project manager and interviews Joceline Yan

Assisted by Meghan Angelica Paul, Vanessa Lim, Cheryl Law, Medina Azaldin, Joash Kong, Shyafika Arina

Art direction Mils Gan

Styling Stephanie Boey, Ed Voon Wei

Videographers Dennis; Emest; Wei Bin

Assistant videographer Hor Chee Yoong

Video editor Rachel Koh

Photography Raisa Azzam

Assistant photographer Amanda Tan Wen Zhen

Special thanks to Alila Bangsar for venue assistance during the whole production.




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