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Monday, October 09, 2006

[The Changing Times] updates

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Next year is HK 10th anniversary of handover back to China. To celebrate this significant event, Hong Kong TVB and Mainland China CCTV will be collaborating on a 60 episode modern series titled "The Changing Times" (Shui Yuet Fung Wan) and to be aired on HK National Day.

As reported, TVB and CCTV are placing heavy emphasis on their collaboration and TVB has roped in their 6 main actors: Damien Lau, Michael Miu, Joe Ma, Raymond Lam, Ron Ng and Ng Wai Kwok with 6 main actresses: Sheren Tang, Jessica Hsuan, Charmaine Sheh, Myolie Wu, Gigi Wong and Toby Leung to participate in this series. The cast is even grander than anniversary series, and considered as mammoth production.

Story: Continuing family struggle and vengeance

HK TVB General Manager Stephen Chan disclosed that "The Changing Times" mainly narrates the development of Chinese automobile industry. Apart from Hong Kong, they will also be filming overseas in Mainland China and Canada. It has been decided that the series will be aired simultaneously via TVB, CCTV and other overseas Chinese channel during October next year. There will be an estimate of 140 million audiences, creating a milestone in Chinese television history. Since 2000's "At the Threshold of an Era" (ATE), TVB has yet to produce series more than 40 episodes. "The Changing Times" will have 60 episodes, with Tommy Leung Kar Shu as its producer (Tommy also produced ATE).

The story revolved between the relationships and rivalries of four families lead by Damien Lau, Michael Miu, Liu Ging Sang (Mainland actor) and Chan Mei Kei. The main plot about the older generation are: Chan Mei Kei (as Wai Cheung Ping), Damien Lau (Wah Man Hang) and Liu Ging Sang (Wah Man Hung, the 2nd Wah brothers) were childhood friends and involved in a triangle relationship. After they grew up, Cheung Ping, Man Hang and his wife Gigi Wong (as Zhan Yan) were involved into another love triangle.

Pictures credit to Chan Mei Kei's blog

In addition, TVB offered almost all of their younger fadan and siusang to lead in the second generation: Raymond Lam and Jessica Hsuan will be playing as Damien's children while Charmaine Sheh is Chan Mei Kei's daughter. Because her mother spent her lifetime obsessing (心系 - sorry if I translated wrongly) Damien Lau, after Charmaine grew up she began to plan revenge on his family. However, she fell in love with Damien's son; Ray. Toby Leung will be playing Michael Miu and Sheren Tang's daughter.

Cast: Sending out the top fadans

This time, TVB has arranged for its top actresses such as Jessica Hsuan, Charmaine Sheh, Myolie Wu, Toby Leung and others to participate in the series. They will represent the different generation and styles of TVB actresses. Since there is some difference in age, there shouldn't be much 'conflict' as in WAB.

Jessica Hsuan can be considered as the longest actress under TVB management contract. Recently due to contracting helicobacterium pylorus, she's not feeling well and have slowly reduced her workload. However, she expressed that she joined the series because it is a rare opportunity to co-operate with CCTV. Jessica has also trimmed her long hair for this series. She admitted that at first she was reluctant to trim them, but she doesn't want to bore the audiences with the same image, so she trimmed them.

Charmaine Sheh will be portraying a strong willed HK girl who is bend on seeking revenge for her mother. Unexpectedly, she got involved in a relationship with the enemy's son; Raymond Lam. There were reports that Charmaine has recently broke up with her rumoured beau Benny Chan and Ray was asked of he was afraid of having rumours with Charmaine. Ray frankly said that he always took his female co-stars as male friends, so he's not afraid of rumours.

Since Toby Leung is producer Tommy Leung's daughter, and compared to the strong cast she was relatively inexperienced, would she worry being accused of getting the role due to her father's connection? Toby tactfully replied: "I'm used to it. He's my father, you can't expect me to cut my ties with him?" She will be pairing up with Ron in the series, and portray from age 18 till 30's.

Portraying rich lady for the first time

With this year's popular "Le Femme Desperado" (LFD) as independent career woman, Sheren Tang has regained TVB favour after being 'frozen' over WAB award fiasco. She will be portraying a rich lady in 'The Changing Times'. Sheren expressed that she has never played this kind of role before, so she will try to prepare herself mentally before filming starts. To show emphasis, Sheren has specially worn sponsored jewelleries worth over a few million HKD to "The Changing Times" press conference. However, as Sheren feared losing the jewelleries, she will be wearing her own accessories and wardrobe during filming.

There are rumors that LFD will be making Sheren's as this year's "black horse" (underdog) for TVB anniversary Best Actress candidate. Due to the "Yu Fei vs. Yuk Ying" fiasco created during WAB, Sheren will not put attention to the rivalry for the award. She expressed that the most important things to her is her series, and she will not think much about other things. When asked whether she was disappointed in losing the previous Best Actress award, Sheren smiled: "That is already in the past, people should look ahead (to the future)."

Chinese news source: Sina
Translated by sehseh. Kindly credit me if reposted.

Pictures credit to Chan Mei Kei's blog:

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