Peter Davis: 50% Malaysian, 100% Proud

Image Credit: The Fight Nation
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Although brought up in the U.K, actor, model, and MMA fighter Peter Davis has chosen to make Malaysia his home. Sharuna Segaren chats with the jovial multi-talented man on his Malaysian pursuits.

Born to a Malaysian mother of Sabahan Chinese ancestry and British father, 36-year-old Peter Davis spent his adolescent and teenage years in England. He would often come to Malaysia during his summer holidays, around six weeks a year, but he never thought that he would end up living here, enjoying a successful career as an fighter, actor, model, emcee.

Life as a Fighter

When he was 20 years old, back in England, while looking for a new fitness activity to do with his friends, Peter came across Kung Fu fighting. “I watched the class through the window and saw how people were just beating each up and it seemed like a lot of fun! I thought it was really cool so my friends and I signed up. Most of them gave up after a while but I continued and grew to love fighting.”

His Kung Fu master was Malaysian, who encouraged him to train harder and join fights in Malaysia. Recognizing the potential in Malaysia and upcoming interest in MMA in the region, he made the decision to stay in Malaysia and fight here.

As a Celebrity Fitness influencer, Peter is also very passionate about health and fitness. He’s an advocate for healthy eating and also the organic industry. “A few years ago I became a pescetarian, meaning the only meat I consume is fish and seafood. I also try to eat organic and reduce consumption on processed food as well. I’ve tried to give up meat plenty of times but it’s not an easy thing to do. However, concern for animals well-being and the environment made me think seriously about the impact we humans make. Now that I have a better diet, I feel better physically and also mentally,” he said.

Cycling is another of his latest interests, as it helps him stay fit and also increases his stamina and endurance during training. However, at his age and having spent many years training and taking part in jujitsu tournaments, Peter is now looking to focus his future on his acting career. He is married to a Malaysian-Chinese,  and they have two young sons.

“I figure I have one good fight left in me, so I’m currently training for a championship that will be coming up at the end of the year. After that I would like to focus more on my health, acting, modelling, and hosting,” he said.

Transitioning to an Actor

An unexpected chance encounter with a director is what got the affable Peter Davis involved in acting. “I was actually fixing a car in the parking lot of my condominium, when I was approached by a director. Back in 2009, we didn’t have Grab or Uber so I was taking taxis all the time and spending way too  much. I decided it would be cheaper to buy a used car to get around. It had some problems as used cars do, so I was busy fixing it when the director passed by and thought, what is this mat salleh doing here fixing a car? I also happened to look exactly like what he was looking for in an upcoming movie role. So we had a chat and that’s how I acted in my first movie.”


The movie was Sell Out!, a comedy drama that did very well among the Malaysian film scene, and it spurred him to continue. During the shooting,  Peter found he really enjoyed acting and so he spent a lot of time honing his craft.

“I didn’t have much acting background besides television commercials and three drama lessons I took in school. So I started taking more stage drama roles to learn more about acting. In a stage drama or play, it’s more intense as there’s a live audience and you need to remember your lines exactly, as well as where to stand, what to do, where to walk, and so forth, while making it all look natural and seamless. It’s not as easy as people think. Hosting and emceeing is different because although you might have a script, it’s flexible and you can switch it up. With acting you need to know your lines exactly, that is the biggest challenge I face.”

Peter’s latest acting role is an upcoming sci-fi thriller called Spiral X, with a tentative release date at the end of 2018. When asked how he chooses his roles, he said there are a number of reasons. “Sometimes you take the role because you want to learn from the other actors and director, or you want to improve yourself and challenge yourself to do something different. You never really know how a movie is going to turn out as it all comes down to editing and other technical aspects, but it’s always a good experience for me and I hope to further my acting career from now on.”

We concluded the interview by Peter saying he has never regretted his decision to live in Malaysia. “What’s not to love about this place? It’s paradise. The country is beautiful, the people are wonderful, and I feel really proud to call myself half Malaysian.”

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