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Sunday, June 19, 2011

[Love is the Only Answer] Alex Fong and Charmaine Sheh finding true love in wife swapping

[Mingpao 19/06/2011]

In the past 8 years, Patrick Kong mostly directed romantic movies. After receiving recognition for his [Love] trilogy, last year his extramarital affair themed movie [Marriage with a Liar] received garnered good review for its blunt depiction. This year he decided to encore with the debated topic of wife swapping through new movie [Marriage with a Liar]. Can you find true love in wife swapping?

Patrick's work last year [Marriage with a Liar] resonates well with audiences and gave him a new insight in filming. Therefore this year he directed [Mr & Mrs Single] and [Love is the Only Answer] to complete his [Marriage] trilogy. He indicates that his recent works are bolder in terms of attitude and not flesh exposure. In [Marriage], the movie frankly depicted the issue of extramarital affair. The intention is not to persuade people to have affair, but to delve into why the society is inclined to commit affairs.

A study, not just hype

Patrick said: "The audiences are receptive to debated themed movies. I implemented this factor by discussing the topic of wife swapping through [Love is the Only Answer]. What are our values, do we feel safer if our partner chose another person for you? I dare to delve this topic but it's not just following the hype. The truth is this problem does exist in the society. As the couple themselves is accepting of this, the bystanders could not pass their judgment on them."

Deriving the theme from urban legend

Patrick loves getting inspiration from every day life. He did not deny that plenty of his part works are derived from his friends' personal experiences. As for the new work [Love is the Only Answer], it was based on an urban legend from the internet. "I've always wanted to film an urban legend. Earlier, a friend told me that there were a lot of replies in a forum discussing about this urban legend: During the wedding banquet of a newlywed couple, the clip which was supposed to air their childhood pictures suddenly switched to the groom and the bridesmaid having sex. The bride immediately announced annulling the wedding and returned the gifts to the guests. This story is very familiar among the younger generation. I personally feel that it is interesting and decided to use it as the opening for the movie."

Praising Charmaine Sheh's acting skills

Mentioning the main lead Alex Fong and Charmaine Sheh, are they an older woman, younger man couple? Patrick trusts that it will not affect the believability as modern love relationships are beyond difference in age. Charmaine might be used to filming highly rated television series but when it comes to movies, will he be worried that she could not attract the audiences? Patrick said: "I've considered this issue. Currently, there are not enough actors in the movie industry. Some audiences go to watch movies for their preferred cast only. I wanted to give a fresh feeling to audiences. Using the same cast repeatedly be too clichéd. Let's give this a try."

He revealed that at first, his intention to collaborate with Charmaine to fulfill his personal wish to work with his idol. He is now in love with Charmaine after getting to know her. "Charmaine's acting is very natural. Although she is a 'Big Sister' (actress with diva status) but she never exerted pressure on the cast and filming crew. She is very into her character. I requested for her to pretend to be Sister Fa and she even agreed to do so. She is very exceptional in emotional scenes, especially with her eyes brimming with tears. I will be discussing with her to film another movie again." As for Alex, Patrick has not been collaborating with him for a few years already. The reason Patrick chose Alex to portray a jerk was due to his contrasting clean image. "Alex has grown up and is willing to accept challenge. His portrayal is quite bold."

Using the same supporting cast minus Chrissie Chau

In order to provide a sense of continuity from movie [Marriage with a Liar], Patrick specially included the '4 Little Dragons' Timmy Hung, King Kong, Jacqueline Chong and Charmaine Fong from the former movie. "I called them to arrange the schedule for filming together. The meaning will be lost if either one of them were absent." In addition, one of the female lead in [Marriage], Carol Yang will be making a guest appearance as Charmaine's love rival in the movie. However, the other female lead Chrissie Chau was excluded. Was it due to disagreement in filming fees? Patrick said that it is not related to money, but the story doesn't involve her character and he could not find a better role for her.

Wedding turned into Divorce


At Bo (Charmaine Sheh) and Keung (Alex Fong) wedding banquet, the screen was playing their romantic scenes when it suddenly changed to Keung having sex with a sexy woman. Bo calmly walked onstage and announced divorce and cancelled the wedding on the spot. This incident was widely circulated online.

A year has passed and the single Bo and flirty Keung maintained their relationship as good friends. One day, the womanizing Keung brought Bo to a wife swapping party. The conservative Bo wanted to leave, but Keung pressurized her into taking part. In the party, they met Kit (Him Law) and his wife Man Lai (Kelly Fu). The four developed a romantic and passionate relationship…. On the other hand, while another wedding banquet was playing a romantic clip of its groom (Jason Chan) and bride (Anjaylia Chan), something unexpectedly appeared onscreen…

Premiere date: End of July

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