Crystal Li (李雪瑩) started her career in the entertainment industry by entering the Miss Hong Kong pageant in 2010. Her most recognizable role to-date is portraying a lawyer in TVB series, Ghetto Justice 2 <怒火街頭2>. Insisting on staying in Hong Kong by herself to start her career, Crystal is not an ordinary and sheltered girl. Ever since she was young, Crystal was well trained by her parents to be independent and able to travel anywhere in the world by herself.
Entering a beauty pageant is the typical way for many of the female artists to start their acting careers at TVB. Not only are beauty and wisdom important, the ability to act is definitely needed to become successful in the entertainment industry. This year, there are many new TV beauties, such as Miss Chinese International winners, Eliza Sam (岑麗香), Christine Kuo (苟芸慧) and Crystal Li. With similar backgrounds and acting experience, they are all rising actresses experiencing wider recognition and popularity.
Miss “Shy” Photogenic
In the 2010 Miss Hong Kong pageant, Crystal Li won the Miss Photogenic award. This has given her the perfect opportunity to start her TV career. Crystal admitted that she is a shy girl, and she never thought of entering a beauty pageant. She happened to be at the right place at the right time.
Crystal had graduated from a college in Great Britain and started working at a law office. Crystal was tired of working at her job, so she decided to quit her job in mid-March. At that time, the deadline to enter the Miss Hong Kong pageant for oversea contestants was the beginning of April, and she was still indecisive whether to enter or not during the week before, although she knew that the opportunity did not happen often. In fact, her auntie had been encouraging her to enter the contest every year, but Crystal came up with excuses every time. Crystal’s mother encouraged her to enter, and told her that winning is not important as long she learns from the experience. In addition, the idea of getting a free trip finally motivated her to enter the Miss Hong Kong pageant.
Hong Kong turned out to be the perfect fit for Crystal. “In the past summer vacations and New Year holidays, I always came to visit my relatives in Hong Kong. I love Hong Kong and I enjoy the fast-paced city life more than the quiet life. Therefore, it is a perfect place for me!” Since a young girl, Crystal has been raised with the curiosity to see the world.. Crystal has always been independent. She spent a year away from her family studying abroad in Rome during her college years. Crystal’s parents were busy working on their own business during her childhood, and did not have much time to spend with her. During summer vacation, her mother would buy two airline tickets for Crystal and her sister to fly to the United States to stay with her aunt.
Crystal’s Parents Watch All Her Dramas
Although the Li family allowed Crystal to venture overseas for her career, she still has a very close relationship with her family. Crystal feels her parent’s love and support even they are not close by. She said since she was little, her parents gave her a lot of freedom to follow her own interests. Crystal said, “When I decided to major in foreign language during college, no typical Chinese student would choose this major. They will usually major in medicine, law, accounting, and engineering related fields. However, my parents never opposed my choice of language as my college major. They told me if I really like it, then I have to do my best and study hard. When it comes to choosing my career in the entertainment industry, my parents have given their total support. They are always excited to watch me on all my TV appearances, making sure not to not to miss any of my shows.”
Born and Raised in Great Britain
Some of the cast members in popular TVB series, Ghetto Justice 2 such as King Kong (金剛), JJ Jia (賈曉晨), Eliza Sam, and Christina Kuo were criticized by viewers on their Cantonese pronunciation. Although Crystal was born and raised in Great Britain, Crystal was spared from the criticism. In fact, many colleagues have asked her how old was she when she left for the country, and thought she only attended college in Great Britain. When she told them that she was born overseas, they were all very surprised.
Asked what is her secret ingredient of learning a language, Crystal laughed and replied, “I always talk to my parents in Cantonese, and I went to Chinese school to study Chinese from 6 years old to 18 years old. Therefore, I have no problem reading and writing Chinese. I also have a little bit of talent when it comes to language, and I have a lot of interest learning Chinese since I was a child. My parents subscribed to Chinese newspapers and magazines, I would mark all the characters that I didn’t know. That’s how I learned all the characters.”
A Blossoming Career
Filming in Hong Kong, Crystal did not experience any language barriers. However, one careless mishap in mispronouncing a word in Mandarin instead of Cantonese led a lot of laughter during the show. After the Miss Hong Kong pageant, Crystal went to Singapore to do an interview for a charity show with Edwin Siu (蕭正楠), Vincent Wong (王浩信), and a few Miss Hong Kong winners. They went to dinner afterwards, and Crystal accidentally mispronounced a word in Mandarin. Crystal said, “All of them teased me about how I speak with an accent during the entire trip.”
Crystal is very articulate and charismatic. She can host a variety show and deliver convincing performances in dramas. With her image well liked and received by many viewers, Crystal has a bright future ahead at TVB.
This article is written by Lance for JayneStars.com.
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