Tuesday, July 13, 2004

[Sing Pao & Ta Kung Pao]

TVB's "To Catch the Uncatchable" (previously referred to as "Stand-up Sleuth") starring Dayo Wong and Ada Choi will begin airing next Monday and yesterday, cast members also including Woo Fung, Lai Lok Yi, Mary Hon, Claire Yiu and Leung Suet Mei took part in a promotion at a slimming centre, creating a fun-filled atmosphere.

Ada has been filming for "Heroic Doctor Legend" in Hengdian recently and returned to Hong Kong especially for the promotion, before flying out in the evening to Taiwan to promote a local production, with such a tight schedule, she is finding it quite tough. When asked if this was because she will be away from her boyfriend Zhang Jin, she immediately changed the subject, saying: "The hardest thing is that there are a lot of mosquitos there, but I have changed hotels now. (Are you missing each other?) My boyfriend (suggesting Lawrence Ng, her on-screen lover) has come back to Hong Kong to film for 'Healing Hands III', so we won't miss each other because we both have work to do. (You seem so happy, is this because you are in love?) I am happy that 'To Catch' will soon be airing."

As Ada was constantly changing the subject, the press could only ask her directly to respond to the reports that she is dating Zhang and she smiles sweetly and says: "From my experience, to avoid good news becoming bad news, then no matter whether I have a boyfriend or not, then I will say I don't. It is not that I am not open about it, just that I do not want the pointless news to linger and give myself pressure. I am thankful to you all for your concern about my life and loves, I am happy at the moment and only concerned about the ratings for 'To Catch'. (What if you are seen dating?) Just go with the flow, I don't need to answer to anyone."

Dayo will be singing the theme song to the new show and in response to the mediocre ratings for TVB's prime time recently, with very few surprises, he was asked if he was confident about his show. He laughs: "There are still a few days left." When asked what he meant by this, he says that the reason his last show "War of the Genders" had good results was because when he was filming, he bumped into Chow Yun Fat and they had their photo taken together. Later Chow put their photo in a frame, then he wrote "Number 1 ratings" on it and it came true.

Dayo smiles: "Brother Fat has such foresight, so I have been wandering around the streets this time in the hope that I will meet him again as he has not left Hong Kong yet, so if anyone knows where he is, please let me know. (Do you feel pressure from the ratings?) How would I? The person with pressure should be Ada, but her previous few shows have had good results, so if this does not do well, it is my fault."

He also laughs that he is busy practising his singing in preparation for future stage appearances and he hopes that the well experienced Ada will look out for him. When asked if he has congratulated her for finding her love, he admits that he daren't bring it up because he does not know the situation and whether she has admitted it or not. As for whether he will be getting married to celebrate high ratings for the show, he says: "No, because I will wait for Cheung Tat Ming to have his third son before I get married. (So how would you celebrate?) I will make another series for TVB, this would be a great gift because filming series is very hard work. (Have TVB already asked you?) This industry is very realistic, if this show doesn't do well then TVB will not ask me to do another one."


[The Sun & Oriental Daily]

Bernice Liu and Kenix Kwok were shooting the poster for "Blossoming Hearts" yesterday at TVB City before Kenix begins filming for new series "Ten Brothers" alongside her husband Frankie Lam.

Kenix was asked whether she was worried about having conflicts working with her husband and she says: "This needs to be overcome, you cannot 'cut off your toes to avoid the sandfleas' [Em: Chinese phrase meaning "to be too careful".] Anyhow, Frankie has a very high EQ [Emotional Quotient], so there should be no problem. I can take the opportunity to raise my own EQ." Weighing just 95 lbs at the moment, Kenix indicates that most girls are happier the skinnier they get and she does not feel there is any problem to even slimmer. She feels that the perfect woman would have the facial structure of Liza Wang and the perfect figure of Maggie Cheung Man Yuk.

Bernice revealed that she was driving home in her seven-seater earlier when she accidentally drove into a kerb. She was trying to pick something up that she had dropped when she lost concentration. Luckily she was not injured, but her tyre has been knocked out of shape and there are some scratches on the front of her car. She says: "I dropped something on the floor of the car and was worried it might get in the way of the brake, but then I felt the car was tilting and I had mounted the kerb. I was very scared!" The most worrying thing for her at the time was being scolded by her father when he found out: "He is very sensitive about the car and can spot even the smallest scratch, but when I called him about the car, the first thing he asked about was me, then he asked how the car was." Also, she says that she met Sammul Chan recently who is still wearing his neck brace and that whenever someone calls his name, he will quickly look around and then there will be a snapping sound before he feels a great pain in his neck!


[Sing Pao, Ta Kung Pao, The Sun & Oriental Daily]

In the past there has been much criticism that there is no true music programming for Hong Kong's music industry, but TVB is taking steps to rectify this as it held a major party earlier to mark the revolutionisation of "Jade Solid Gold", waving goodbye to miming and the excuses of being unwell as the producer announced that if you are afraid of singing out of tune, then don't come on because it will be you who is embarrassed.

TVB held the party entitled "Heart. Deep Breath Music Population - TVB's New Wave in Music Party" at the trendy Wanchai venue Club ing, inviting forty singers and executives from the radio stations and record companies to bear witness to the new changes. For mysterious effect, only one of the new hosts Denise Ho was announced as the producer Chan King Yau pointed out that the other host would be revealed when the new format begins airing on the 21st. He also admits that in the past, "Jade Solid Gold" only looked at the class of its guests, but with the new format, the show will be all about the music as well as the guests and it will be aired live, with a live band.

When asked if they would not invite singers who sing out of tune, he says: "If they sing out of tune, then it is them who will be embarrassed, this does not affect the show. They need to be well rehearsed, this is a basic requirement. (Will there be no more miming?) Yes, if you are afraid, then don't come on. (What if they ask to mime?) It will not be allowed. (How about feigning illness?) Well we will ask them to leave, I hope this will not happen but if they are genuinely ill, then we can discuss it." The guest list will depend on the chart positions, so if the number one singer does not come on, will he or she lose their position? Chan says: "We have an agreement with all the record companies, if the song has achieved this, then there is no reason not to award that position."

The stars present at the event included Hacken Lee, Joey Yug, Gigi Leung, Leo Ku, Steve Wong, Joey Tang, Andy Hui, Candy Lo and Denise Ho.

Andy Hui, Paul Wong and Steve Wong all support the changes wholeheartedly and are happy that Hong Kong finally has a music show that will be dedicated to the music. Andy believes that this will give newcomers a great opportunity to experience singing in a live environment and he says: "Some newcomers say to me that to remember half an hours worth of lyrics is very scary. I say to them that if that was the case, then they would have to be scared five times over if they were to hold a concert! Even Alan Tam has commented that singing the wrong lyrics is a Hong Kong singer speciality."

Paul feels that maybe there will be some confusion to start with, but everyone should be patient. Having previously criticised JSG in the past, Paul says he is very supportive of the changes: "It is not about whether I criticised it or not, but I am pleased to see a new vision and as a musician, I will wholly support this." Steve is not worried that there will be no singers daring to go on the show because there are many truly talented stars in Hong Kong. He says: "If you find that your idol does not go on the show, then you need to reassess whether you know what you are actually listening to." As for TVB's distribution of Beyond's music special VCD's, Paul and Steve are not bothered by this, saying that they filmed the shows for TVB in the past and Beyond have singer contracts with the company.

Denise admits that there is pressure on her as the live host for the show and she will have to do a lot of preparation. She indicates that she is not worried about tricks from the other stars, nor is she worried about appearing on stage with her rumoured boyfriends. When asked if she is at an advantage being the host, she says: "No, TVB are very fair and I have discussed this with the producer about what will happen when I have an album released."

Production resourcing department deputy director Lok Yik Ling indicates that they are currently considering whether to sign Jackie Chan's son Jaycee as a singer. When asked whether they will be giving him special treatment, she says: "Don't say it like that, as he is Jackie's son, things will be different. (Are you racing against Cable to produce a special interview with him?) We each do our own thing, Jaycee will be promoting through many channels." When asked about the IFPI's complaints against TVB's release of music specials on VCD's, Ms Lok responded: "This is a happy occasion, I will talk about this with you another time."


[The Sun]

With TVB's recent release of some of its music specials and music awards ceremonies on VCD, this has led to the displeasure of a number of record companies, who have lodged complaints to Hong Kong's authority for the music industry the IFPI in a move to claim royalties on the sale of such programmes that feature their singers and their songs. Leon Lai has recently joined in the protest as TVB have released one of his music specials previously filmed for the company, claiming that as he no longer has a contract with them, then he should be given royalties on any profit they continue to make from his work. He says: "Singers make these specials for promotion and having done the work, we should be entitled to claim our rewards as the company will already have made from the advertising revenue when the show was aired. (Will you be asking TVB for some money back?) No, I will leave this decision with them, if I need to chase anyone it will be the record company. (Will you be making your own productions and selling them to TVB to air instead?) It doesn't matter if I make them myself or not, but if they are selling them, then we should be entitled to royalties."


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