Sunday, April 04, 2004

[04/04/04 The Sun]

After a round of staff cuts, TVB has started on the next stage of its economy drive and introduced a new set of policies for artiste payments that will reduce the income for its performing staff. Jerry Lamb responded to this news yesterday with a comment suggesting that TVB is squeezing everything out from its staff and calling for a 'work to rule' as a protest. TVB's new measures present a change to the current rules where artistes can claim at least 'half a show' when they make an appearance for a short time. The new policy means that if the artiste appears for less than one minute, they can only claim for '0.1 show', reducing the minimum fee for such appearances by 80%.

Jerry Lamb appeared yesterday with his wife Lily Hong and his son at a childrenswear promotion and expressed his displeasure at the new policy: "To me it has little effect, but after this reduction, TVB will never add it back and I would suggest that artistes should stand up to this by working to rule and not doing the company any favours. Please can the union help us out on this? Everyone can only dare be angry but dare not speak out, but I am not afraid of them striking back. Maybe later TVB will make artistes save up points to swap for dinner tokens, the staff are already worked to the bone and are not earning enough to keep their families. Originally I was going to sing a theme tune with Nnadia Chan, but their cost cutting exercises mean that they will be using their own salaried staff instead. I am kicking myself for signing a new contract."

Also, Timmy Hung and Frankie Lam were playing football against the Hong Kong A Team in Mongkok yesterday and in response to the new policies, they both feel that before the company informs them of this officially, they have only heard the news from the press. Frankie says it will not affect him because he has a per-episode contract with TVB, but it will affect Timmy more. However he is not worried and will wait for notice from the company he does not believe it will be as bad as the reports suggest.


Stephanie Che, Johnny Tang, Linda Chung and Rain Lau appeared at an Easter party promotion for "Virtues of Harmony" yesterday. It has recently been revealed that Stephanie has split with her boyfriend Sherman Lee after reports that Lee has been playing the field with his new model girlfriend and other girls along the way. Among them is TVB production chief Tommy Leung's daughter Toby Leung - little wonder that Stephanie wants to leave him. When asked if she has gotten over him yet, Stephanie did not want to talk about it at first and changed the subject to her throat: "Aren't you concerned about my throat ulcer? (Pains of the heart are harder to heal.) There is no medicine for that. (Your old flame Jordan Chan says you will never be dumped.) I will send him a solicitor's letter telling him not to say anything on my behalf, but as a friend, he is very exaggerated."

Also, TVB is strongly promoting Miss Chinese International winner Linda Chung and arranged for her to appear inside an Easter egg as the centre of attention. She says that she has started work on filming, but some of the lines are too long and she is quite nervous leading to quite a lot of NG's.


Recently there have been reports that whilst filming a music special, Joey Yung has been the object of Michael Tong's desires, but she denies this saying: "Of course not! We have spoken about this and we both find it rather amusing. (Is there any chemistry?) Not at all! I think he is very gracious and I am not very experienced in acting, so he will look after me and when it was windy, he lent me his jacket. (Have any men done this for you before?) Usually it is very hot when we are filming, this is the first time I have met with a cold wind. (Has your boyfriend ever lent you his jacket?) He is often very caring, but I don't really remember."


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