We'd probably be most familiar with actor Ekin Cheng
and his shoulder length hair, the image with which he's
featured in mass appeal movies like the Young and Dangerous
series (1996-2000), and the hugely popular The Storm
what if he had to chop those locks off one day?
40-year-old actor did just that, for the very first
time, in his latest television production, Huo Yuan
Jia, a Chinese folk hero whom modern audiences will
best remember as being depicted by action superstar
Jet Li in Fearless (2006). While there have been both
television and movie versions on the story of Huo, Cheng
thinks that while comparisons would be inevitable, he
relished the challenge and the opportunity in playing
the historical character.
easiest part about filming this was actually my bald
head,” Cheng tells MovieXclusive.com during an
interview when he dropped by Singapore recently to promote
the television series.
his Hong Kong-accented Mandarin, the good-looking actor
recalls: “Everything was cooling and simple. There
was no need for a stylist!”
such, Cheng also learnt quite a bit about the Huo style
of boxing, and paid visits to surviving descendants
of Huo Yuan Jia. As part of his research for the 42-parter,
he researched Huo's character in depth, as well as went
through many images and photographs depicting his life
to understand the psyche of Huo.
the much publicized disagreements that Huo's descendants
had with the recent movie version (which depicted the
annihilation of the Huo Family), there was no such dispute
as they were consulted on this television series, thus
lending some authenticity.
trouble is the last thing Cheng wants. In 2000, the
actor was in the limelight for his troubled love life.
“I was very affected back then, but now, I just
worry about what our next generation would be like if
the situation carries on like this.
all about communication and respect between celebrities
and the media,” adds Cheng somberly.
of Jordan Chan will be glad to know that he too has
a role opposite his good friend, though Chan will be
playing Chen Zhen, Huo's famed disciple. Cheng mentions
that it was indeed nice to have collaborated with Chan
on the television series. It was also the first time
he spent more than three months filming in China under
extremely cold weather conditions.
hesitation, Cheng states: “Weather was the most
difficult thing about filming this project.”
plenty of firsts that Cheng sacrificed for this series,
and from what we've seen from the publicity clips, Huo
Yuan Jia the series looks set to thrill audiences again
with Huo's brand of martial arts and philosophy.
wish that after watching this series, we Chinese can
learn to learn to open up.”
Talking about his upcoming new movie, "Rule #1"
(directed by our very own Kelvin Tong):
On his bald image in "The Legend of Huo Yuan Jia":
On donning a wig and the extreme coldness while shooting
His take between shooting movies and drama serials:
the intrusive media and more:
about his singing career?
Legend of Huo Yuan Jia" the 42-episode television
drama series is sold at all good video stores.
Press Conference Report & Video Clips: Stefan
Interview: John Li
Photos & Layout: Linus Tee