The Last Tycoon <大上海>, is an upcoming Chinese gangster thriller featuring Chow Yun Fat (周潤發), Huang Xiaoming (黄晓明), Sammo Hung (洪金寶), Francis Ng (吳鎮宇), Yuan Quan (袁泉), Yuan Li (袁莉), and Mo Xiao Qi(莫小棋).
Directed by Wong Jing (王晶) and produced by Andrew Lau (劉偉強), The Last Tycoon revolves around the life of a crime boss, Du Yuesheng, who built his empire in Shanghai and chronicles his power struggles between influential local figures. The film’s many explosions and gunfights will elicit fans’ fond memories of Chow Yun Fat’s classic scenes from The Bund <上海灘>. The Last Tycoon will be released during the holiday season in December.
Huang Xiaoming, one of the most popular young leading male actors in mainland China, worked with the three Best Actors, Chow Chun Fat, Sammo Hung, and Francis Ng for the first time.
From Young Gun to Gang Leader
Huang Xiaoming ‘s portrayal of the gang leader is very credible in The Last Tycoon. His performance was unanimously praised by the crew and cast members. Huang Xiaoming jokingly complained to the media that he was tortured by the three Best Actors in the film. Francis Ng forced him to kill someone, Sammo Huang forced him to kneel, and Chow Yun Fat cost him his fiance. He said his character in the film encounters many tragedies in his life, and he hopes his captivating story will attract many movie goers to watch the film.
In the film, Huang Xiaoming’s character is a young man growing up in Shanghai. After fighting and struggling with his enemies in the other gangs, he earns a large sum of money and becomes a rich and powerful tycoon. He has close ties with Chiang Kai-shek and is even involved in the revival revolution.
The role of playing a ruthless gang leader was quite new and challenging for Huang Xiaoming. The producers and directors have always given him the role of a hero, and he hardly had a chance to portray a character who goes through so much turmoil. Finally, Huang Xiaoming has a chance to portray that role in The Last Tycoon. He hopes that he will never hear that he is too handsome and only suitable to play heroic roles.
Meeting With Idol Chow Yun Fat
Five years ago, Huang Xiaoming played Hui Man Kueng, in the TV series, The Bund <新上海滩>. Both Huang Xiaoming and Chow Yun Fat both rose to fame after playing this well known and popular character, Hui Man Keung. This is the first time Huang Xiaoming and Chow Yun Fat co-starred in a film together. Huang Xiaoming became a nervous fan during filming, and he would occasionally ask Chow Yun Fat for advice on how to adjust his performance to be better integrated into the plot as a whole. Under his guidance, Huang Xiaoming was able to portray his character successfully.
The producer, Andrew Lau, revealed that’s Huang Xiaoming’s portrayal of Hui Man Kueng had the similar dynamics like Chow Chun Fat. He was worried that Huang’s portrayal of the role in Last Tycoon will have the resemblance of the same character, which bore similar background details. However, Huang Xiaoming was able to play this role with his own style and it was certainly not a repeat performance. Francis Ng and Chow Yun Fat offered their vast experience on set, always giving advice to other cast members. They were very professional, and were willing to film the scenes repeatedly until they were satisfied. The production team truly believes the audience will not be disappointed with their performances.
Huang Xiaoming’s acting ability to play various roles is usually overlooked due to his handsome image. Fortunately, under the guidance from the three movie kings, he was able to drop his usual handsome image and successfully portray a ruthless leader of the gang. Aside from seeking advice from them, Huang Xiaoming had to learn how to fight in different action scenes with the help of the choreographer, Li Dacho. Huang Xiaoming practiced very hard to perfect the routine, and even pulled aside some of the staff to practice the choreography with him.
Wong Jing admitted that Huang Xiaoming’s handsomeness often led to his acting ability being ignored, as the audience focused on his handsome face. In The Last Tycoon, Huang Xiaoming has a chance to showcase his acting skills with his challenging role and fighting scenes. Wong Jing believes this will be Huang Xiaoming breakthrough performance, and the audience will see a completely different side of him.
This article is written by Lance for JayneStars.com.
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