Thursday, October 07, 2004

[Ta Kung Pao & The Sun 08/10/04]

Kwong Yip Sang's production "Hidden Treasures" finished filming a while ago and at last it sees the light of day again, but it will be aired on TVB's paid TV channel TVBe as of next week. Cast members including Bobby Au Yeung, Sonija Kwok, Anne Heung, Shirley Yeung and Ellesmere Choy took part in a promotional event in Ap Liu Street yesterday, attracting a crowd of two to three hundred people, who raised their hands to take photos and ask for autographs from the stars. When the souvenirs were handed out, the stars kept well away from the pushing crowds, throwing the presents over from a distance, resulting in a scramble to snatch the items and screams from those who did not get any.

Although TVB sent some motorcyclistss and a number of security personnel, the male stars stepped in to help protect the female stars as well. At first, Bobby was holding the hand of one of the girls, but in the end he ended up grabbing Ellesmere's hand, causing a lot of laughs.

Sonija was half an hour late for the event and she explained that she does not have a car and her driver did not know the way, so she was delayed. When it was mentioned that she was dressed rather conservatively, she says it is because the weather is starting to get colder now. Was she afraid at the number of people in the crowd? She says that she is not because it was like this when they were filming on location there and the locals are very friendly. As for the show being aired on a paid channel, is she worried about the ratings being low? She says: "It must be good for it to be worth the money people are paying for it. As long as the quality is there, then it doesn't matter where they air it."

Anne was not fazed by the large crowds: "We have experienced this before when we were filming here on location. The fans in the mainland and in Malaysia are even more frenzied, I have been scratched and punched by them before. That's why I will never wear any jewellery when I take part in these events, otherwise the jewellery will definitely disappear when I shake hands with people." Originally, Anne had wanted to wear a short skirt, but she was afraid of the number of people there and decided to wear trousers instead. As for whether she was heckled during filming, she says: "Not at all, but in one scene, I had to chase my father in the show (Hui Siu Hung) and as it was a far shot, one of the hawker control officers went into shot and asked if I was okay. We had to NG and re-shoot the scene."

Shirley thinks that the enthusiasm from the crowd makes the event good fun and as there are plenty of security guards around, then she is not worried about being taken advantage of. As for the show being aired on a channel with a small number of viewers, Shirley does not find this disappointing because at least it can be aired and not left in storage.

With some job cuts having taken place at the beginning of the year, producer Kwong was among those who was given his notice. However, due to his contract, he will not be leaving his position until September. During the promotion yesterday, Kwong was asked about his future plans and he indicates he will not be leaving TVB, but will be moving over to the Overseas Production Team, looking after the series that TVB will be filming in cooperation with external companies. Talking of the detail of his new role, he indicates that he will report to his new department in mid-October, so he is not sure yet, but he feels that this will be a new challenge for him. When asked if he was kept by one of the executives, he says: "We have had discussions." As for his production being arranged to be aired on paid TV, Kwong says that he is not disappointed because having it aired on another channel is another new trial for him.

Bobby and Kwong have worked together on many series and each of their creations have had good results, so Bobby is pleased that Kwong will be staying with TVB. He says: "If he leaves, then that would be a great loss to the company and to me. Good producers should be made use of."


[Ta Kung Pao & The Sun 08/10/04]

With the popularity that "Yu Fei" has brought her, Sheren Tang was interviewed for Metro Radio earlier. With "War and Beauty" peaking at 41 ratings points, the two male leads Bowie Lam and Moses Chan have agreed to appear at the celebratory party dressed as concubines to thank the audience for their support. When Sheren was asked if she would appear in a bikini or a camisole, she immediately shook her head and said: "I did not agree to that! To be honest I never really pay much attention to ratings. I remember in 1985 when I filmed my first series 'Sit Yan Kwai' (The Legend of the General Who Never Was), the ratings for that show was 60 points. If I have to wear a bikini for 41 points, then what should I wear for 60 points?"

If Sheren does not pay attention to ratings, then why does she remember the ratings from that show nineteen years ago? She says: "Because when I first entered the industry, my family said that if the ratings for my series was in the top three, then they would take me on holiday. 'Sit' reached 60 points and took the top spot, so my family took me to America for Christmas and that was the first time I travelled on a plane as well as the first time I went abroad, so it was particularly memorable for me."

Talking of Bowie Lam getting plenty of job offers after the effects of "War", has Sheren also made plenty of money from the show? She laughs: "Don't say earning a lot of money, but recently I have had many more offers of work and you will see me taking part in events every single day. (How will you be rewarding yourself?) My reward will be to have a rest on Friday because I have not had a good sleep for a long time."

When asked what she felt about the appearance of pirate "War and Beauty" DVD's appearing on the market, Sheren says: "Surely not? The pirated Mandarin versions are not as powerful. (Some fans gave up watching the football to watch the last episode.) This is a good sign, the women finally win for once." As for the suggestion from Charmaine Sheh to film a modern version, she feels the opposite, saying: "It would not be as good, the story is about the conflicts in the Qing palace, people in the modern day would not be as evil."


[Ta Kung Pao 08/10/04]

With her popularity rising after the airing of new series "Split Second", Yoyo Mung's movie "Ngoc Mung" (Nightmare) will be released on the 21st, also starring Jo Koo, Edmond Leung, Michael Tong and Helena Law. The film should prove to be a hit during the Double Nine festival holiday.

The storyline of the film surrounds a female journalist who has had the same nightmare for over ten years. The atmosphere of the film is terrifying with a twisting storyline and Yoyo plays this plagued journalist in the film. She says that she has always been afraid of watching horror films since she was young, especially the scenes that suddenly scare you, because they will linger in her mind for a while afterwards, making her very uncomfortable and even having nightmares that make her cry out loud. Because of this, she did think about turning down the part when she received the script to the film.

Yoyo says: "I have never acted in a horror film before because I am very scared of becoming too absorbed in the role and being unable to step out of the character. However, after I read the script, I felt that there was a big chance to shine in this role and a test to my acting abilities, so I decided to take it in the end."

In the film, Yoyo's character starts off as a sweet lovable character, but the nightmare leaves her exhausted and all the strange occurrences leave her psychologically scarred. During the filming, Yoyo had to scream loudly and cry out often and in one scene that told of her being possessed, she immediately rushed madly towards the camera. When Edmond and Michael saw her, they tried to stop her and then she burst into tears. When the director called to stop, she could not stop crying and got even worse as she curled herself up trembling. Edmond was very scared when he saw this and immediately got a cup of hot tea for her to calm her down.

Although it was hard work filming for the movie, Yoyo has no regrets about it and believes that this was a very valuable experience.


[Oriental Daily & The Sun 08/10/04]

Marco Ngai, Rebecca Chan, Joyce Koi and Priscilla Chik were among the stars at the "October Birthday Stars" celebration yesterday and with a rise in her popularity thanks to "War and Beauty", Rebecca revealed that she shares a birthday with Marco, so they raised their cakes together as birthday twins. Although Marco refers to himself as an emperor [Ref: new series "Imperial Layabout"], 'Empress' Rebecca refused the kiss from this 'fake Emperor', laughing that she does not want to have rumours with him.

Rebecca laughs: "I share my birthday with Marco, Ben Wong and Vinci Wang on 20th October and we did all celebrate together once at work. However, my position is high and mighty now, so I may not celebrate with them now." Rebecca indicates that in her new series "King of Herbal Medicine", she has to wear pauper's clothing and has no servants as well as filming a coffin scene for the first time. " The first scene requires me to lie in a coffin, but I am not afraid because I was told by a crew member that it is good fortune! I received a lucky packet for it."

Marco reveals that this year will be the seventh birthday he will be spending with his girlfriend Joyce Tang and when asked if he is suffering from the seven year itch, he says: "What do you mean? I was itchy from day one!" He then said jokingly that he would consider getting married. As for Joyce Koi who has just celebrated her birthday, she will be having a special celebration with over a thousand fans in the middle of the month.


[Oriental Daily 08/10/04]

Kenix Kwok and Sheren Tang took part in a event yesterday and Kenix was asked about her recent burglary. She indicates that the item that she was most disappointed in losing was their wedding rings and a Christian Dior watch that was specially made for her. Kenix reveals that she has now bought back some of her jewellery, some of which was given to her by her husband and some that she bought herself. Kenix says that luckily most of the more valuable items were kept in the safety deposit box in the bank and so she was not emptied out by the theif. She also jokes that those items were not kept in the bank where a number of safety deposit boxes were destroyed.

Kenix and Sheren were guests at the launch of a new Max Mara perfume and Kenix prefers a fresh scent such as jasmine, but if she has to dress asexually, then she will wear cologne to add to her style.


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