At first glance, one immediately notices Daaim Jailani’s impressive physique.
Looking at his muscular form, it’s hard to believe the 25-year-old’s declaration: “I tried dating but I was always rejected.”
That was way back in secondary school, when he was a “very, very skinny kid”.
“I was one of the smallest in my class,” recalls Singapore-born Daaim. “And as a result, I had low self-esteem. Being rejected by girls made it worse.”
Now, those who turned down Daaim’s request for a date are probably regretting it. The former personal trainer (whose full name is Muhammad Solatuddaaim Jailani) is becoming one of the hottest rising actors in Malaysia.
Thus far, Daaim has starred in movies and TV series such as Pinjamkan Hatiku, Gadis Kampung Paling Popular and Pinggan Tak Retak Nasi Tak Dingin.
Up next, he will be seen in horror film Langsuir, which was shot in Langkawi and co-starred Syafiq Kyle, Hannah Delisha and Firdaus Nadxaman. Presently, he is in the midst of shooting TV drama Melankolia with Aliff Aziz.
The 177cm-tall Daaim is also part of the Adrenaline Impact Family. “With the help of Azmeer Yusri (a rally car driver in Malaysian Rally Championshop 2017 which was held in Perlis), we want to create more awareness for rally car racing for not only Malaysians, but the international market, too.”
One of four siblings, Daaim’s interest in fitness was sparked in 2014.
“At that time, I joined an established fitness centre in Singapore as personal trainer. I built up a reputation as one of the centre’s best trainers.”
As Daaim’s clientele grew and his knowledge in fitness increased, so did his confidence. So, when he was invited to join Manhunt Singapore 2015, he didn’t hesitate.
“The pageant was the first platform to showcase my talents. Although I did not win, I made it to the finals and gained invaluable experience. Through that pageant, I met other like-minded individuals who shared the same fitness goals.”
He also tried his hand at freelance modelling.
“This opened up doors to meeting new people from all sorts of backgrounds. My passion for acting began to grow, and the decision to go for auditions was the best I ever made. It led me to an unfamiliar place which I now call home – Malaysia – where my acting career began, with my debut in the romance movie Pinjamkan Hatiku.”
In Malaysia, Daaim feels that he can maximise his potential in life.
“I am so used to speaking English in Singapore, so it’s a bit of a challenge speaking and acting in Malay. I am still learning, and trying my best. I am always keen to learn and improve myself.”
Naturally, Singapore-born actor Datuk Aaron Aziz is someone whom Daaim aims to emulate.
“Of course, he is one of the actors I look up to. But I hope to chart my own course, eventually,” muses Daaim, whose dream is to be cast in an action movie.
With close to 13,000 followers on Instagram (@daaimjailani), he realises the importance of social media for artistes. “In this day and age, it’s the perfect medium to communicate with my friends and fans, and update them on what I’m shooting.”
He makes it a point to reply all his fans. “Although the number is small, it’s growing, and more people have reached out to address my pros and cons as an actor. I appreciate their feedback, as it will only help me improve.”
Despite his increasingly busy schedule, Daaim is still passionate about fitness. “I try to work out in the morning before a shoot or at night.”
Asked for his fitness tip, Daaim replies: “Motivation is key. If you’re not motivated, it’s hard to exercise.”
Not surprisingly, he applies the same discipline to his acting. “I motivate myself and focus on my character. In every aspect of life, it requires discipline.”
Asked to recap the past year, Daaim answers: “2017 has been a challenging year as I just started to focus on acting. But with the support of family, friends and Malaysian fans who are by my side, I was able to achieve what I wanted.”
He adds: “As a new actor, the past year has definitely been eye-opening. I have learnt so much from other senior actors and directors, which included an acting class by Ellie Suriaty before filming Langsuir.”
As for the new year, Daaim muses: “I want to be a better version of myself as I believe the best of me has yet to come.
“Of course, I’d love to be entrusted with more opportunities in entertainment in 2018, and to be able to work with talented people in the industry. My principle in life is to never stop learning, as knowledge has no limits.”