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Making A Mess Out Of Life – Twice

28 Apr

SINGAPORE : Get your tissues out next week because you’re going to need it – if you can understand the plot of this new Chinese drama series, that is.

Debuting on May 5 is the plot-twisting, emotionally-charged MediaCorp TV Channel 8 drama Rhythm of Life. With a plot reminiscent of Gwyneth Paltrow’s Sliding Doors, this 20-part series boasts of a star-studded cast including Christopher Lee, Elvin Ng, Jesseca Liu and Jeanette Aw.

The drama revolves around the lives and loves of a guy and his two friends. Friend A’s sister loves Guy, but Guy loves Girl – who Friend A is in love with, as well. Friend B, however, loves Friend A’s sister, thus forming a love rectangle bound for disaster.

Friend A’s sister then dies in an accident, but because Guy’s too busy chasing Girl, he misses his opportunity to save Friend A’s sister, changing everybody’s lives. Guy is whisked back to the past – just before the accident-prone sister kicks it – for a chance to make things right.

Rhythm of Life is touted as the series that will give your tear ducts a workout. After all, the trailer, shown at the press conference held at Sinema at Old School on Thursday, featured all the male leads in teary-eyed close-ups that spilled dramatically into full-on sobbing.

Hey, real men also cry, okay? –

Channel News Asia

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Caldecott Royalty Does The Fann-Cy Talk

6 Feb

SINGAPORE: Oh yes, Fann Wong is definitely in the mood for love. “I want that rose! It’s beautiful!” she gushed with excitement.

Then, she added coyly: “Valentine’s Day is coming … ”

Take a hint, Chris. And get your cheque book out.

The rose that has captured the heart of the Princess of MediaCorp is no ordinary flower – it’s really a painting titled Life Like Flower No 1 by renown Chinese artist Feng Zhen Jie, and it costs a whopping S$400,000.

“I’d like to receive that on Valentine’s Day. If not, then never mind,” said the actress, mock sniffing, before breaking into faux evil laughter.

It was 9.45 on a Monday morning when Fann met TODAY for this interview, and she was early. She had, in fact, been up since 5am to prep for her interview on Channel News-Asia’s Prime Time Morning, and it was to be a busy, busy day ahead – more promotional work for her latest movie, Jack Neo’s Ah Long Pte Ltd, followed by rehearsals for MediaCorp TV Channel 8’s Chinese New Year countdown show.

Yet, the actress, who just turned 37 two weekends ago, looked fresh as dew, and not a year older than 30. She looked a million bucks – even with minimal make-up – in a flirty white bareback Loewe dress under a matching white leather jacket.

Clearly in high spirits, Fann was uncharacteristically – for a superstar – candid and open, yakking and joking away without reservation.

“As long as the questions are not too personal, I’m okay with it,” she said, flashing her charming megawatt smile.

We took the opportunity to venture into personal waters and asked her why she seems much more open about her relationship with her actor beau Christopher Lee these days, and she teased: “I’ll kiss him back this year (at the Star Awards)!”

We pushed our luck a little further and asked her what her boyfriend thought of her “fanny-baring” scene in Ah Long Pte Ltd (for which she didn’t think it was “necessary to use my body”, so what you’ll be seeing is her butt double).

She volunteered impishly: “I wanted to pull his leg and tell him that it is going to be my butt just to test his reaction … and to see if he’d recognise that it’s not really my butt.”

My oh my. This is not the kind of talk we were expecting from the notoriously private Caldecott royalty who has starred in Hollywood movies alongside international celebrities like Jackie Chan, Owen Wilson and Maggie Q. But who’s complaining?

Behind that glamorous facade, Fann proved to be a goodie-bag full of surprises. We even found out that she sneaks into local cinemas to watch the occasional movie.

“I do! I just go. I don’t care,” she said.

You just celebrated your 37th birthday two weekends ago. Are you feeling the pressure of growing old in an industry that’s constantly thirsty for youthful beauty?

Is it my 37th? I’ve lost count! Age hasn’t bothered me since I turned 21, when I was really happy. I enjoy being where I am now.

I mean, you don’t want be in your 20s forever. I’d be very afraid if I had to keep doing the same things I did in my 20s. You grow older, you get to know yourself better and you become more confident. And I think it’s wonderful to have young people coming onboard the entertainment scene. New blood is a good boost for a small industry like ours.

So you don’t feel threatened by the so-called “Seven Princesses” of MediaCorp (Fiona Xie, Felicia Chin, Joanne Peh, Jeanette Aw, Rui En, Jesseca Liu and Dawn Yeoh) nipping at your Christian Louboutins?

I look at it very positively. You need a new face to represent every era. Yeah, I think every one of (the princesses) stands a very good chance.

I’m just very lucky as I happened to be in right place at the right time, meeting the right people. So, just three words of advice: ‘Hard work’ and ‘luck’.

Do you see yourself “stepping down” and retiring soon?

Being the free spirit I am, I think I’ll quit as and when there are no more fun and challenging roles left for me to play. Or, when I feel that there is something else that needs me to focus on, I’ll move on. It could happen tomorrow. Much as I love what I do, you never know ῅ passion can go out in a split second giving way to another.

Like family and motherhood, perhaps?

Maybe! I don’t know! Of course I’d like to have children. Ideally, if I can afford it, I would like to have enough children to form a football team!

But at the moment, time just doesn’t allow it. So, I’ll let nature take its course. I think I have ample time before I should start worrying.

As someone who can probably have anything you want, what is one thing you can’t have right now?

That’s not true! I can’t have that beautiful painting by Feng Zhen Jie (Life Like Flower No 1). It costs S$400,000! There’s nothing else I want.

Okay, seriously, I believe in being contented with what you have and being grateful … But I still want that art piece! I am going to steal it! –

Channel News Asia

Ezann Lee In Her Most Challenging Role To Date

27 Feb

Is it the end of sweetness and light for Ezann Lee?

In what promises to be a breakthrough role, the 24-year-old MediaCorp actress will play the mentally challenged cousin of Fann Wong’s character in the serious-minded Channel 8 drama series Making Miracles.

Ezann’s role highlights the susceptibility of the intellectually disabled to sex crimes.

One of Asia’s few hospital- related dramas with scenes shot in an actual operating theatre, the show features a cast of veterans that includes Taiwanese actor John Chiang, Terence Cao, Darren Lim and Zheng Ge Ping.

Despite her nervousness at acting alongside Fann for the first time, Ezann said she learned a lot from her veteran colleague.

“She’d guide me along in some of the more emotional scenes we had to play,” Ezann said during a press conference last Friday.

Best known for her role as a lesbian in Eric Khoo’s 2005 film Be With Me, Ezann’s latest role is a departure from the characters she has played in the past.

In researching the role, Ezann spent time observing intellectually disabled students, as well as studying the South Korean film Marathon – which tells of an autistic youth training to be a marathon runner.

It remains to be seen if Ezann can emulate the success of fellow artiste Jeanette Aw, whose role as an intellectually challenged young woman in Channel 8’s Holland V (2003) won her Best Actress nominations at both 2003 and 2004’s Star Awards.

Either way, in an industry packed with promising up-and- comers such as Jeanette, Joanne Peh, Felicia Chin and Jesseca Liu, Ezann plans to continue making the best of whatever opportunities come her way.

“Actually I’m a little afraid of being stereotyped into kids’ programmes with my sweet image,” she said. “But I guess that’s something I can’t change.”

Channel News Asia

This Is For My Ex-Wife

11 Dec

SINGAPORE: Huang Yiliang did it again – made another controversial speech involving former wife Lin Meijiao.

At Sunday night’s Star Awards, which were held at the St James Power Station for the first time, Yiliang won the Best Supporting Actor Award for his role in the drama Women of Times.

When he went on stage to accept the award, he said he wanted to give the award to Meijiao. In the same speech, he also thanked his current wife. It was a speech that raised eyebrows, not least due to the little-known fact that he has remarried.

In 2003, when he won the same award, Yiliang mentioned Meijiao in his thank-you speech, comparing her to a giraffe and saying her neck had grown from yearning for an award.

Meijiao was not present at Sunday night’s show.

Backstage, Yiliang lost his cool when quizzed him about the speech.

“Meijiao is more talented than me but she doesn’t have my luck,” he said. “I’ve always wanted her to win something so I’d like to give this award to her.”

He claimed he was simply voicing the wish of his daughter with Meijiao. He has been married for three years to Lily Liu.

“When I made that speech in 2003, I only had good intentions. I regret that it’s a joke that fell flat, I shouldn’t have made it.”

Visibly annoyed, he added: “Do you know how influential the media is? If you write bad stuff about me, that’s the end of me. Please spare me. I don’t have any bad intentions.”

Meanwhile, the Best Actor and Actress Awards were won by Li Nanxing and Ivy Lee, respectively, while Hong Huifang nabbed the Best Supporting Actress Award. Bryan Wong won Best Variety Show Host, while Kelvin Tan won Most Popular Newcomer.

The top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes were: Christopher Lee, Gurmit Singh, Tay Ping Hui, Vincent Ng, Edmund Chen, Qi Yuwu, Mark Lee, Kelvin Tan, Elvin Ng and Bryan Wong.

As for the women, the top 10 were Kym Ng, Huang Biren, Xiang Yun, Rui En, Michelle Chia, Jeanette Aw, Felicia Chin, Fiona Xie, Quan Yifeng and Jesseca Liu. – TODAY

Channel News Asia