First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

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Let me get this off my chest: Why, WHY is there another REMAKE of this series? Including this version, we have 5 adaptations of the same (and very popular) wuxia novel by Jin Yong. I’m sure there are many wuxia novels waiting on the shelves to be filmed, producers. You just need to research and read the dang novel!

A brief look at the photos…and I’m worried.

It seems like a miscast all around. For those who don’t know about this novel, it’s about the journeys of three sworn brothers – Qiao Feng, Duan Yu, and Xuzhu, as their kingdoms and sects intertwine with each other. Out of the 4 already aired versions, the one I have watched (thoroughly) and enjoyed the most is Tvb’s adaptation in 1997. You may know already; I was a Tvb drama addict as a kid and envisioned days of wild fantasy in which I ruled jianghu with a sword on back, and a bottle of 女儿红 in hand.


Back to the drama, the one who is playing the titular role of Qiao Feng is… Wallace Chung. I don’t want to sob so early because I’ve always imagined him carrying his boyish charm to the screen as Duan Yu. As a successful leader of the Beggars’ Sect, Qiao Feng is righteous, fearless, macho, and charismatic. I love Wallace, I really do, but something about him doesn’t scream fierce and rugged. Take a look below at his terrible costumes…his head appear too small for the baggage. T___T I hate his hair because when the wind blows, he seems bald.

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In the 1997 version, although a bit short in height, Felix Wong managed to be a magnet with his screen charisma. I loved the way he carried himself, giving off the air of dominance and power with his gestures and expressions. His dark eyebrows and captivating fierce eyes just pulled you right in. At last, his character is tragic. Forever, I shall remember that last scene. I hate the girl’s guts (if you know who I’m referring to, lit a fire!)

Tvb also always inserted this badass instrument when he was fighting…just so you know he’s wiping the floor with everyone. 😀

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He doesn’t look too bad with less baggy clothing on. His poses do look weak though.

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The adorable prince of Dali, Duan Yu is given to….*drum rolls* Korean actor – Kim Ki Bum. Uhhh…. I don’t know what to say. I’d have preferred if the opportunity is given to new blood yunno. Ki Bum’s colorful outfits give me a headache. My impression of Duan Yu from previous versions – someone who is gentle, noble, kind-hearted, and with a dash of nerdiness. Anything but flamboyant that I’m feeling here. I liked Benny Chan’s version more than Jimmy Lin’s in 2003. Suffice to say, Duan Yu is adorable as long as he isn’t displaying irrational devotion to Wang Yuyan. I was praying the whole time for him to leave her. 😛 They say in this version, he doesn’t end up with her. WHAT? This is a yay for me.

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If I had to film in another country, I’d look scared too:

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At least I’m not alone, someone else also thinks Ki Bum should be in Disney instead…

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Innocent and straightforward monk from the Shaolin Sect, Xuzhu, lands in the hands of Han Dong. Okay, this I cannot compute. I’m not sure if it’s me but Han Dong always gives me the vibes that he’s the sneaky villain. How am I supposed to think he’s someone dim and naive?

Prove me wrong Han Dong!

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Not his image for this drama.

Louis Fan was perfect with his wide-eyed innocence in the 1997 version. His wushu background also added in a layer of visual enjoyment when it came to the martial arts sequences. His poses were strong and sturdy. The 2003’s version – the guy was just too tall!

Duan Yu’s love interest is Wang Yuyan, played by Zhang Meng. She was recently seen in The Magic Blade with Wallace. Ultimately, she’ll be compared to beauties such as Idy Chan, Carman Lee, and Liu Yi Fei (how funny that these three actresses have also played Xiao Long Nu?). I think she’s cute but not beautiful like how the character is described – fairy-like. (Carman Lee still reigns as the classic beauty for me because she’s someone who looks better in ancient costumes, like she’s hopped out from a painting. Liu Yi Fei could be her daughter.)

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Hanging out with Duan Yu because well, he’s a stalker.

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Jia Qing portrays two roles who are sisters. The older sister, Ah Zhu, is the love of Qiao Feng. She’s kind, thoughtful, and selfless. The younger sister, Ah Zhi, is selfish, evil, spoiled, someone I personally want to shove down the stairs. My reaction: What the hell? You’re screwing with my brain already, I can’t hate and un-hate her in a few seconds! This is WRONG!

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Evil face on:

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Sitting with Qiao Feng.

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I basically smiled when I saw this batch of photos. Because I recognized it immediately. It’s the scene where Duan Yu meets Qiao Feng and is cheekily drinking bowl after bowl of wine, while using his family’s sword technique to release the alcohol. Qiao Feng is impressed with his tolerance and decides to have a friendly race with this young lad.

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Aww, they look cute!

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I know I sound pessimistic and nit-picky but I can’t help myself. I like the actors but I wish they had better costume designs to cover up their lacking areas. For now, I do hope them the best!

As much as I liked the 1997 version, a rewatch would mean making friends with the fast forward button. Since there are kazillion characters, some moments you just don’t care. For sure, I wouldn’t miss the epic battle on Shaolin.

Images from: Sources

  1. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    I am not fond of TVB remakes. Boo! Hiss!! This news just reminds me to take out my old original copy from my film vault and give it a run for the money. Ohhhh, when Felix was the monk… good ol’ times.

    Wallace looks so much like Ekin Cheng in these photos. LOL~

    No comment on adding the Korean actor.

    • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

      hahah I still can’t imagine Felix as the naive monk! My elders have watched that version…but I’m like…PASS!!

      Wallace took Ekin’s iconic HAIR! 😛

      • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

        Why not? Felix just carried that naivety onto his Kwok Ching character from The Legend of the Condor Heroes a year after. Felix was more believable as Kwok Ching in nature than Julian Cheng in ’94 remake, that’s for sure — right(?), however I don’t like admitting this but I prefer Athena Chu as Wong Yung than Barbara Yung; Athena looks naturally more mischievous than Barbara did for the part.

        Wallace, Wallace, Wallace… the guy couldn’t fill up naturally like his predecessors did for his role so their stylist had to layer him up make believing he’s a manly buff kung fu master. LOL~

        • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

          It’s because I watched Felix as an actor backwards, based from his masculine DGSE image. So when I saw the babbling naive fool, I was screaming, “This is not Qiao Feng! Mom!! What happened to my hero?” His Qiao Feng left a deep impression on me. Dang, that ending.

          Didn’t like Wong Yung at all. She suffocates me and I can’t stand her pushiness and demands. She’s lucky she met Guo Jing. Never finished any versions of “The Legend of the Condor Heroes.”

          Poor Wallace…my boo deserves better than this.

  2. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    anybody knows who is the producer, director or screen writer of this adaption???

    • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

      produced by Chen Pinxiang and directed by Lai Shui-ching. he used to direct some ATV dramas back in the days. His mainland works include the Magic Blade, Heavenly Sword and Dragon Sabre 2003, Madame White Snake (CTV). so you can be assured he has the credentials to do wuxia!

      omgggggg WALLACE!!! your hair and clothes!! you look POORRRR!! not fierce!! but poor. lol

      KI BUM??? what are you doing in China? what happened to your Suju activities? are you out or IN? geezz?

      the girls are………… so unattractive compared to the previous versions. WHAT HAPPENED?

      this is gonna flop aint it…??

  3. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    Seriously. I can’t even look at this. The casting is ridiculous. The drinking scene between Qiao Feng and Duan Yu looked wrong in so many ways…

  4. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    I am a fan of the 1997 & 2003 versions. Qiao Feng is not a character easily pulled off. You need an actor with a strong but kind glare, and broad and strong physical appearance. Qiao Feng speaks with both his eyes and his fists. In his novel, Jin Yong described him as someone exuding a “hero aura”, who is upright and virtuos. The new actor for the 2013 version still has some baby fat on his face and his eyes looked kind of ‘dead’ – how is he going to pull off a “man of all men” kind of character puzzles me.
    The fact that they include a Korean actor in this one says a lot. Looks like wuxia will start to see a bevy of Korea-China collaboration; fully utilising the Hallyu wave and popularity of Korean idols with the younger generation of women. Perhaps more young girls will start watching wuxia? Who knows? We sure need to cultivate a new generation of wuxia lovers in order for the genre to survive to future generations.
    As for the actor acting as the monk – no comment. The monk character is a wild card. His story was not given equal weighting in DGSD as Duan Yu and Qiao Feng. Only towards the end does his character come into greater significance. It is as if Jin Yong while writing the novel suddenly decided half-way to make it a trio instead of a duo.
    I am not excited for this drama given the cast but I will still watch it. It is good to compare notes between the different versions of DGSD.

    • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

      if the director thinks adding a korean actor, specifically ki bum to the cast will generate more interest iin wuxia genre, i think he’s making a risky move here. Ki bum’s popularity in Korea isn’t that favorable to begin with. he’s part of suju but hasn’t been doing anything with the group at all. wait, he’s bare in the public eye even. they could’ve picked another popular actor…. so i wonder why they went with him instead of giving the role to a rising chinese actor.

      ill watch it too…

  5. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    I have always been a Jin Yong fan, and while TVB has had some questionable adaptations and remakes for some of the novels, I have to say that there are a lot of characters they really know how to cast. So I have trouble watching anymore remakes of the novels after watching the ones from TVB — then again, I grew up on TVB and am forever connected to the old adaptations they did during the years before their dramas started going bad.

    In my mind, there is no one who exudes more “hero aura, man-of-all-men” than Felix Wong in his role as Qiao Feng. This guy was made for the hero roles as he has proven time and time again in many historical/wuxia productions. I’ve only seen the 1997 and the 1982 TVB productions, but Felix Wong will always be my favorite pick for this type of hero character. So I’m biased against many others because they just aren’t Felix Wong. So I’m not a good judge of future Qiao Feng castings.

    As for the rest… well, to be honest, I really think that (with the exception of some) the 1997 cast was absolutely fantastic. Benny Chen was a little awkward, but he pulled off Duan Yu in that cheeky, young dorky idiot way that Duan Yu is supposed to be. And Louis Fan also did great for Hui Juk, though I’ve never actually been impressed with his acting… he simply looked the part of Hui Juk’s innocence and naivette.

    And I also agree that Carmen Lee will always be the most beautiful of the actresses who have portrayed Wang Yuyan (and Xiao Long Nu).

    So, yeah… the above casting just doesn’t look very promising. Then again, you can’t write off a series until you see it, right? On on the other hand, I’m kind of tired of seeing Jin Yong novel adaptations/remakes. How many times can you actually adapt a novel before it gets worn out? And I’m of the impression that each time the novel is remade, the story line seems to change just a little bit… which really just irks the heck out of me when significant plot points end up being changed.

    For instance, Ah Zhu and Ah Zhi were sisters, but to my knowledge, they weren’t twins… or were they? I’m foggy on my Jin Yong knowledge. So making the two girls look the same (acted by the same actress) would really change a bit plot-wise (possibly in Qiao Feng’s romance line). Will our hero’s undying, unwavering love be tempted because the evil little sister looks exactly like her wonderfully, selfless older sister? That would really put a chink in my admiration for Qiao Feng…

    As for the Felix Wong as both the monk and the hero roles in both TVB adaptations — I actually watched the 1997 version first, then watched the 1982 version. And to be honest, Felix Wong really rocked it; he pulled off both roles to the ‘T’. There’s acting talent for you. Of course, visual-wise, I’m still of the impression that Louis Fan has a more innocent and naive look than Felix Wong does, but Felix Wong has the better acting chops.

    Man… I can’t believe it’s been 15 years since I first saw the Demi Gods, Semi Devils adaptation for the first time…

    • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

      I’m with you…extremely biased with Felix as Qiao Feng. He was just all sorts of awesome, yunno.

      Each adaptation the storyline changes a bit because the director chose to film a different edition of the book (in some cases). For instance, in this version (2013), Duan Yu won’t end up with Wang Yuyan (major change!). He’ll end up with his other supposed sister (not to spoil other readers), the fierce Mu Wanqing.

      Her first still looks FANTASTIC. She has an intense glare.

      15 years….dang…… we’re old. 😛

      • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

        Ooh… now this is a change I might be able to accept, granted they handle it properly. In both adaptations I’ve seen from TVB, I’ve always liked Mu Wanqing the most out of all his “half-sisters”. She was more… I guess the word would be “street” smart than the rest; and she did so much just to help him. I remember watching the 1982 version and hearing my mom comment about how she’s the only person in the entire story with any common sense. In the 1997 version, she was also my favorite, but her character got less focus by the time Wang Yuyan showed up, which irked me.

        I was never a fan of Wang Yuyan… always thought she was blindly loyal to a man who’s never shown her any affection at all. Then again, Duan Yu was also in that same boat, following her around like a puppy dog even though she’s told him how uncomfortable and inconvenient he was making things for her. It was like a merry-go-round of unrequited crushes for SO many Jin Yong characters all the time… Good thing his novels’ main focuses were never just romance.

        • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

          I skimmed through the 1982 version. Too old for me. 😆

          But I did LIKE AND ADORE Bondy Chiu as Mu Wanqing. She was fierce with a touch of innocence (in the sense of love and loyalty). I can say I honestly LIKE all of his sisters except the evil one. Tvb chose the actresses well for their parts.

          Wang Yuyan frustrated me. Oh my gawddddd this girl is blind. I know she’s well-protected and sheltered, but if a man treats you bad…HE TREATS YOU BAD, PERIOD!! No arguments there. Duan Yu is on the same boat except Wang Yuyan doesn’t treat him like crap. She shows concerns for him, unlike her selfish cousin who could care less when she’s in harm’s way.

          I keep rewinding just to see Xiao Feng summons his powerful dragons. hehe.

          Epic Music. Kinda Cheesy Entrance! 😛

        • 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

          anicheung, good point re. the romances in Jing Yong’s novels. In fact, Jin Yong’s real life relationships mirror the romances of his characters (or rather the other way around). There was rumour when 神鵰俠侶 (Return of Condor Heroes) was published that the romance between Gu Gu/Xiao Long Nue and Yang Guo depicted Jin Yong’s love for an older woman who ended up being another man’s wife (the rape of Xia Long Nue was symbolic of how the woman he loved was taken by another man). Whilst Jing Yong’s relationship with that older woman did not work out, at least Xiao Long Nue and Yang Guo had a happy ending.

  6. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    “Didn’t like Wong Yung at all. She suffocates me and I can’t stand her pushiness and demands. She’s lucky she met Guo Jing. Never finished any versions of “The Legend of the Condor Heroes.””

    I feel the same way about WY; for some reason, I never warmed up to her – although I did finish one version of LOTCH (the one with Felix).

    “I’m kind of tired of seeing Jin Yong novel adaptations/remakes. How many times can you actually adapt a novel before it gets worn out? And I’m of the impression that each time the novel is remade, the story line seems to change just a little bit… which really just irks the heck out of me when significant plot points end up being changed.”

    Same here. Every year there’s a new remake of the same dramas. I assume little things get changed because they want to bring something “new” and “fresh” to their version. Here’s a novel thought: why don’t they actually bring something NEW and ORIGINAL and can the remakes?

    “For instance, in this version (2013), Duan Yu won’t end up with Wang Yuyan (major change!). He’ll end up with his other supposed sister (not to spoil other readers), the fierce Mu Wanqing.”

    OMG, seriously? I’m actually all for that because I love MWQ. I wanted Benny to get with her in the TVB version (even though Carmen was so beautiful). I’m not sure how I feel about this new version because I was a huge fan of TVB’s 1997 version. As with all new remakes, I’ll watch it first to pass judgment, but I won’t be holding my breath for it to air (and get subbed).

  7. 16 thoughts on “First stills for ‘Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils’ 2013

    I only watched the 2003 version, and I quite enjoyed it, but I agree with you – Jin Yong’s books have been adapted wayyy too many times. And I’m already fearing for the cast of this show.
    I actually think Wallace Chung isn’t too bad – he looks terrible in some stills, but in the shots when he’s with Duan Yu he looks quite convincing. And Wallace isn’t too poor an actor too, so I think he should be fine, although probably not stellar.
    Kim Kibum is another case entirely. Can he even speak Chinese? Why him? He looks NOTHING like Duan Yu. I’m praying and praying that they’ll cast someone else at the last minute, someone more suitable – it just blows my mind that kibum is playing my favourite character in the show (or second favourite – I really loved Qiao Feng near the last half of the show) And what is up with his robe? That colour burns my eyes, so much that I want to burn it.
    The girl playing Ah Zhi/Ah Zhu doesn’t seem to bad – she looks quite good as both, but it’s quite hard to tell from stills so I’m reserving judgment.
    Note: Zhang Meng is probably going to go down as the least pretty WYY in history. Hopefully she can act to make up for it (although, frankly, WYY’s role doesn’t need much acting.)

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