rosy out­look

Hong Kong TVB drama NoRe­grets, set in wartorn Guangzhou, may well be a hit se­ries.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - FASHION - By LIM CHIA YING chi­ay­ing@thes­

The stars of Hong Kong TVB drama NoRe­grets, set in wartorn Guangzhou, talk about their lat­est se­ries.

CHAI Gau! Chai Gau!” For the past year, TV au­di­ences have cried with, rooted for, and even wor­shipped the com­plex char­ac­ter of Chai Gau, the coolie who be­came rich in the award-win­ning TVB drama Rosy Busi­ness.

The name be­came a house­hold name and pro­pelled Hong Kong ac­tor Wayne Lai Yiu Cheong to ac­claimed star­dom for his ex­cel­lent portrayal of the role.

At last year’s TVB 42nd An­niver­sary Awards, host Carol Cheng had even ad­dressed Lai as Chai Gau.

For the record, Lai bagged three awards that night – Best Ac­tor, My Favourite Male Char­ac­ter and Pop­u­lar Artist. It was one of the defin­ing mo­ments of his ca­reer that prompted Lai to de­scribe the char­ac­ter as his rep­re­sen­ta­tive work. Not sur­pris­ingly, the huge suc­cess of Rosy Busi­ness has sparked a spin-off of sorts, No Re­grets, fea­tur­ing some of the stars from the ear­lier se­ries. Lai was in Kuala Lumpur last week with No

Re­grets co-stars Pierre Ngo Ka Nin and Fala Chen to pro­mote the 32-episode se­ries that is avail­able on Astro On De­mand (AOD).

The room was abuzz with ex­cite­ment as soon as Lai sat down to field ques­tions from the press.

“I def­i­nitely hope No Re­grets will be well­re­ceived. To all of you who had rushed home af­ter work in time to watch Rosy Busi­ness, I hope you would do the same for No Re­grets,” says Lai, 46, who was ca­su­ally garbed in a Tshirt, vest and slacks.

Through­out the press con­fer­ence, he kept press mem­bers in stitches with his witty repar­tee.

He says he does not feel any pres­sure of hav­ing to live up to the ex­pec­ta­tions and hype that came with his su­perb portrayal of Chai Gau. “I don’t ac­tu­ally feel much pres­sure when I act,” he says. “It’s like I tend to for­get the pre­vi­ous shows I’ve acted in. For me, ev­ery new show is a new chap­ter.

“In fact, I call it a co­in­ci­dence that my char­ac­ter Chai Gau is well­re­ceived; we never imag­ined that it would be such a hit.”

The good-look­ing and slim Ngo says ev­ery­one in the team is just as ex­cited about No Re­grets’ pre­miere.

The 34-year-old ac­tor is re­mem­bered for his portrayal of Che­ung Bit Man in Rosy Busi­ness, for which he won the Most Im­proved Ac­tor Award at the 42nd TVB An­niver­sary Awards.

While he played the use­less el­dest son of the Chi­ang fam­ily whom ev­ery­one loathed, Ngo’s role in the new drama is the com­plete op­po­site.

“My char­ac­ter now is a poor ru­ral boy who be­comes a mild-man­nered po­lice of­fi­cer whom the au­di­ence would sym­pa­thise with,” he says. “We are con­fi­dent No Re­grets will be even bet­ter than Rosy Busi­ness.”

Chen, who looked pretty in her grey dress, says she had pre­vi­ously col­lab­o­rated with Lai but this is her first time act­ing along­side Ng.

“I had watched some episodes of Rosy Busi­ness, but when I was given the op­por­tu­nity to read the script for No Re­grets, I liked it very much,” says Chen, 28.

“I wanted to be as in­volved as pos­si­ble in the whole show, which ended up with me ask­ing many ques­tions. Also, I tend to pon­der deeply over my char­ac­ter so that I de­liver well.”

She adds that her char­ac­ter, as Lau Sing’s (played by Lai) sis­ter who is bed-rid­den, is dif­fi­cult to por­tray be­cause she is not one who falls ill or cries eas­ily.

The show is set in war-torn Guangzhou, China, in the 1930s, some 100 years af­ter the events of Rosy Busi­ness.

In NoRe­grets, last year’s TVB best ac­tress Sheren Tang Shui Man plays the el­dest daugh­ter of a gang leader, Cheng Kau Mui, who re­turns from Shang­hai to have a share of the lu­cra­tive opium trade.

Lai is the up­right Lau Sing, the leader of a crim­i­nal in­ves­ti­ga­tion team.

Fate brings Kau Mui and Lau Sing to­gether as fierce con­tenders from con­trast­ing worlds. Through time, they be­gin to un­der­stand each other.

Lai says what makes the sto­ry­line dif­fer­ent is that it does not re­volve around just two cen­tral char­ac­ters. “Ev­ery char­ac­ter is just as im­por­tant and each is given room to grow.”

He adds that the se­ries is dif­fer­ent as it show­cases China and her peo­ple from the 1930 to the 80s.

“To me, the chal­lenge lies in hold­ing the view­ers’ at­ten­tion through the dif­fer­ent eras and, at the same time, re­main­ing fo­cused on

(From left) All smiles, NoRe­grets... Fala Chen, Wayne Lai and Pierre Ngo.

Deadly con­fronta­tion: A thrilling scene with the main char­ac­ters, Sheren Tang and Wayne Lai (sec­ond from left), from NoRe­grets.

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