Cecilia Cheung’s Box Office Clout Tested in “The Lion Roars 2”
Cecilia Cheung’s (張栢芝) return to the film industry has not been well-received since the announcement of her divorce with Nicholas Tse (謝霆鋒) last year. The box office results for her last several films have been less than satisfactory, causing Cecilia to be dubbed as “box office poison.” Even though she is constantly surrounded by negative press, she still continues to receive film offers and work, including the anticipated sequel to The Lion Roars <河東獅吼> .
The Lion Roars 2 comes ten years after the original comedic film where Cecilia starred with Louis Koo (古天樂) and Fan BingBing (范冰冰). The sequel features a star-studded cast hailing from Mainland China, including Xiao Shenyang (小沈陽), Fan BingBing, Huang Weide (黃維德), Viann Zhang (張馨予) and Wu Jianfei (吴建飞).
While the original film offered more comedic relief, the sequel features more action and romance as it takes place during the Three Kingdoms period, telling the story about military strategist Zhuge Liang (Xiao Shenyang) and his wife Huang Yueying (Cecilia Cheung). Although Cecilia still portrays the sassy Huang Yueying, the sequel proved more challenging for her to film because Cecilia’s character had to enlist herself in the army in order to save her husband. This meant she had to wear a heavy armor suit and film the fight sequence in August, one of the hottest months of the year in China where temperatures were as high as 35 degrees Celsius.
Cecilia Risked Safety in Action Sequences
In one scene, Cecilia had to fight while riding a horse which posed an extreme danger for the actress as it was also raining that day. Despite the urges from the director and choreographer to use a body double, Cecilia insisted to do the stunts herself. To ensure a smoother horseback riding scene, Cecilia also took the initiative to spend some time alone with the horse to familiarize herself with the horse’s temperament, petting him and feeding him during rest periods.
The complicated fight sequences inflicted several injuries on Cecilia throughout the filming. Comparing the temperatures to a sauna and given the difficult and dangerous filming conditions, the cast and crew praised Cecilia for her professionalism in maintaining her composure during filming and not complaining.
The Lion Roars 2 is this summer’s highly anticipated film and premiers across China on August 17th. Will Cecilia once again poison the box office figures for the film? Or are film buffs eager to see Cecilia in action, given the dangerous and challenging stunts that she did herself?
This article is written by Natalie for JayneStars.com.
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