Interesting. Shawn Dou Xiao, my Sunshine, hasn’t led enough dramas yet but he’s reuniting with Tang Yan; they starred in modern drama See You Again not long ago. The Legend of Xiao Chuo is based on a novel written by Jiang Sheng Nan, on real historical figures of the Liao Dynasty. Tang Yan will play Xiao Chuo (Chinese Name), who later became a capable Khitan empress after marrying Emperor Jingzong of Liao, and subsequently a regent for her son Emperor Shengzong. She was known for her knowledge of the government and its administration, and a strategic military leader, commanding her own army of 10,000 cavalry. Wow. A very impressive woman! As for Shawn Dou, he will not be playing the emperor….he’s playing Xiao Chuo’s childhood sweetheart, Han De Rang, later a trusted Chinese minister under her rule. This is where I think the novel embellishes on a few things, such as a love affair between our leads, a questionable royal birth, and the eventual burial of the two in the imperial tomb.
Nothing against Tang Yan, but I would prefer my military leader with a little bit more meat on, so she isn’t picked up easily by the wind. It’s also hard for me to picture Sunshine as a minister. Lolol.
Drama within drama! Joe Xu Hai Qiao is a badass! We all know how shady the entertainment business is and many actors are forced to accept and move or lest they offend the big boys in the biz but lookie at Xu Hai Qiao, who directly tagged the production team on weibo about editing his lines (leading to words not syncing with mouth movements) and cutting his scenes. When he was cast for the role, he read the novel and really liked the character and in the five months of shooting, had done his best to bring the character forward. He frequently sought the novel author and together they hoped to bring the wholeness of his character to life. As an actor, he usually watches his works as they air to monitor and improve for later projects, which was how he began to notice drastic lines editing and reduced scenes onscreen. The author supported his stance and stated that his performance is ideal and closest to the character written in the novel. The producer (Tang Li Jun) and one of the screenwriters (Han Pei Zhen) have spoken up, explaining that the work of post-production teams is to enhance and highlight the characters and the plot to intensify the flow of the storyline. Every decision they made was done collectively, after speaking with the producer, directors, script writers, and post production teams. Interestingly, not with the actors! Han Pei Zhen stated that the small changes are deliberately done to enrich and link with the plots later on, so that as the story reaches climax, viewers will be able to see the characters holistically and not just under one color. Whether these changes will alter his character in a negative light, we would have to watch and see.