Hot cou­ple


The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - TV - By CHEW WAN YING en­ter­tain­ment@thes­

THE quest for truth is far from over. Ex­pect more in­trigue, more drama and more chill­ing cases to solve as Hong Kong TVB’s Foren­sic He­roes fran­chise takes view­ers be­yond the yel­low crime scene tape once again.

Af­ter two suc­cess­ful se­ries, the TV sta­tion de­cided to in­ject new life into the hugely pop­u­lar fran­chise and re­cruit some new blood for the third in­stall­ment.

Wayne Lai, a two-time best ac­tor win­ner at the TVB An­niver­sary Awards, takes over from se­ries reg­u­lar Bobby Auye­ung Tsan-wah to play the head of a new team of foren­sic sci­en­tists com­pris­ing Mag­gie Che­ung Ho-yee, Ed­win Siu and Aimee Chan. Two new char­ac­ters, por­trayed by hot ris­ing stars Ron Ng Cheuk-hei and Kate Tsui Tszshan, are also set to leave their marks on the fran­chise.

With the first two se­ries – star­ring Au-Ye­ung, Frankie Lam, Yoyo ron ng and Kate tsui join the cast of the third in­stall­ment of hit se­ries Mung and Linda Chung in the first and joined by Kevin Cheng and Char­maine Sheh in the sec­ond – known to be hits, we won­der whether Ng and Tsui, who were re­cently in Kuala Lumpur to pro­mote the show, felt pres­sure liv­ing up to the stel­lar record.

Ng, 32, said: “We were asked this be­fore we even started shoot­ing. To be hon­est, Kate and I are not fac­ing much pres­sure as the fo­cus is on the foren­sic team, rather than on us. We are just tak­ing care of other aspects. So we are leav­ing it to Wayne and Mag­gie ( laughs).”

Tsui, also 32, ex­pressed her con­fi­dence that Foren­sic He­roes III would be a hit like its pre­de­ces­sors, what with a bril­liant script and a sub­ject mat­ter that has proven to have view­ers hooked over the years.

The vi­va­cious Tsui plays a po­lice sergeant who is Ng’s su­pe­rior. As the story un­folds, love even­tu­ally blos­soms be­tween the pair but her mother ob­jects to their re­la­tion­ship. How­ever, Ron’s char­ac­ter is not what he ap­pears to be and more drama un­folds.

It seems that Ng and Tsui are fast be­com­ing the new TV cou­ple. Back in 2007, she played his cousin who har­bours a crush on him in cop drama The Academy II: On The First Beat. Last year, they col­lab­o­rated again in Wax And Wane and mini-se­ries Drop­ping By Cloud Nine.

“In our pre­vi­ous col­lab­o­ra­tions, we usu­ally start as lovers at the be­gin­ning of the se­ries. In this one, you get to see the courtship as well as the ob­sta­cles faced by the cou­ple, such as how I am hu­mil­i­ated by her mother due to the dif­fer­ences of sta­tus be­tween us,” of­fered Ng.

As fa­mil­iar as they are with each other, it was a brand new ex­pe­ri­ence for the pair to film a scene in which they ex­changed a long and pas­sion­ate kiss on a crowded street.

“We were sur­rounded by passers-by and me­dia. They were all watch­ing us. It was in­deed un­for­get­table,” re­called Ng with a laugh.

How­ever, the kiss might seem a bit tame com­pared to Tsui’s much talked-about smooches with an­other TVB heart­throb Bosco Wong in her last drama se­ries Lives Of Omis­sion. It was re­ported that Tsui and Wong shared over 300 kiss­ing scenes! So who is the bet­ter kisser ac­cord­ing to the ac­tress?

“This is a tough ques­tion,” replied an ap­par­ently abashed Tsui. “Ron is right be­side me now, so of course I would say it’s him!”

Steamy mo­ments aside, the two ben­e­fited from star­ring along­side Lai and Che­ung, both noted for their act­ing prow­ess.

Prior to this, Ng col­lab­o­rated with Lai, 47, in the mul­ti­pleaward-win­ning cos­tume drama Rosy Busi­ness.

“He’s al­ways been very nice and both Kate and I learnt a lot through his per­for­mances. He never brings scripts to the set be­cause he re­mem­bers all his lines. Even a script laden with tech­ni­cal terms was a breeze to him,” he said.

Mean­while, Tsui’s friend­ship with Che­ung – who is her best friend and house­mate in the se­ries – con­tin­ued off screen.

“Mag­gie might seem very cool, but she’s ac­tu­ally kind of cute. We still hang out to­gether af­ter the shoot­ing was com­pleted. Sim­i­lar to Lai, she looks re­ally cool and pro­fes­sional in the se­ries and their lines are the hard­est to mem­o­rise be­cause of the jar­gons. You can’t even miss a word,” she said.

Ron con­curred: “In fact, we tended to re­mem­ber their last two lines so that we were able to pick up where they left off.”

Of course, what’s a foren­sic drama with­out the blood and gore? The cast and crew got more than what they bar­gained for. Tsui re­mem­bered mut­ter­ing a prayer be­fore film­ing a scene fea­tur­ing a real skele­ton, while Ng said that it helped that a real-life foren­sic ex­pert was part of the cast dur­ing that scene.

Af­ter Foren­sic He­roes III, Ng is now shoot­ing a new crime drama se­ries called ATF: Anti-Ter­ror­ist Force, while Tsui is gear­ing up for a film adap­ta­tion of Lives Of Omis­sion, which will be the sec­ond film based on Michael Tse’s hugely pop­u­lar role of Laugh­ing Gor.

Along with Linda Chung, Fala Chen, My­olie Wu and Tavia Ye­ung, the beauty queen is tipped to be the next TVB star to look out for fol­low­ing the de­par­ture of TVB queen Sheh.

With their pop­u­lar­ity on the rise, it’s no won­der that both have not con­sid­ered fol­low­ing in the foot­steps of Sheh, Bowie Lam and Ber­nice Liu in leav­ing TVB and join­ing the boom­ing film­ing hub in China, where the money lies.

The two replied in uni­son that they still have many years of con­tract with the TV sta­tion.

“Un­der TVB’s ar­range­ment, I have starred in a cou­ple of China-pro­duced drama se­ries. Hope­fully, I can star in one ev­ery year,” said Ng, who is the lead­ing man in sev­eral China pro­duc­tions such as Choco­late Lovers, Life And Death and Pretty Maids.

Does that mean the ac­tor, whose ro­mance with Chi­nese model-turned-ac­tress Viann Zhang that was re­cently made pub­lic by the pa­parazzi, will get to spend time more with his new squeeze?

He played coy, ask­ing: “You mean my girl­friend in Foren­sic He­roes III?” be­fore con­clud­ing that he will fo­cus on his ca­reer first. n Foren­sicHeroesIII pre­mieres on Astro On De­mand (Chan­nel 921) to­day and is aired week­days at 9.30pm. For more info, visit­con­test.

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