Nothing can be happier and more satisfying than to see his son improving day by day. During the filming of TVB period drama, Curse of the Royal Harem <萬凰之王>, in late 2010, Sunny Chan’s (陳錦鴻) then 3-year-old son, Edgar Chan (陳駕樺), was diagnosed with mild autism and language impairment. After completing his duties for Curse of the Royal Harem, Sunny took a brief hiatus from the industry to care for his son.
“People believe that taking long breaks is a sumptuous move,” said Sunny. “But I think [the break] was worth it. If I can’t even care for my own son, what is the point of earning a lot of money?”
In September 2013, 5-year-old Edgar will enter primary school. As Edgar will be preoccupied with school activities, Sunny will finally be able to afford some time to film more television dramas. Sunny’s wife, Ada To (杜雯惠), will be in charge of caring for Edgar while Sunny is busy with work.
For an entire year, Sunny would dedicate his entire day on coming up with plans to educate and cultivate his son. “My son has improved a lot,” exclaimed Sunny proudly. “I am very, very satisfied.”
Patience and Love
“A Chip Off the Block <巴不得爸爸…> and Curse of the Royal Harem have impacted me greatly. In A Chip Off the Old Block, my character cared for his son wholeheartedly despite knowing that the boy was not his. I wondered to myself if I would ever be able to do the same thing.
“My son was diagnosed with autism when I was filming Curse of the Royal Harem. I portrayed an emperor, and while he had everything, the role made me realize that what I wanted the most is to have a simple and happy family. After filming completed, I decided to go on a hiatus to care for my son. This period of time was very significant for me.”
Edgar was extremely antisocial and often ignored his parents. Sunny would spend time with his son every day to let him know that his parents can be trusted.
“To deepen our relationship, I would take showers with my son and organize lesson plans for him that corresponds to his progress. I have taught him to recite the multiplication table song and write a diary. He has great memory and has already completely memorized the multiplication table. We are also highly competitive with each other. He will emulate me when I recite the table, and he will try to recite it faster than I can. It’s interesting! For kids like my son, you will have to consistently give him new targets and goals.”
Although Edgar’s social abilities have improved tremendously, the boy still has minor speech impediments. Sunny explained, “I required him to write a diary every day so he will slowly learn how to formulate correct sentences and words. He used to say very broken sentences in the past, but now he can speak in complete sentences. My son also did not trust us very much, so I would often climb trees with him. When he fell, I would catch him. After many trials, my son finally realized that his father would always be there to help him. Now that he has learned to trust me, he has stopped losing his temper. I would take him to ride the minibus, buy ice cream, and let him learn the concept of paying. Now my son is always showing off his multiplication skills and reciting his diary to our relatives!”
Thank You, Jonathan Chik
At last year’s TVB Anniversary Awards, Sunny was one of five winners for the Outstanding Artist Award, an award which salutes actors for their integrity, as well as their integral influence on the Hong Kong television industry. As none of the winners knew they would be receiving the accolade beforehand, the Outstanding Artist Award became one of the most shocking and touching moments at the Anniversary Awards.
“This award is to reward those who work hard and arrive on time. I have been working for TVB for more than ten years. I’ve tried going through three days without a voice during the filming of River of Wine <九江十二坊>, but I still insisted on filming so I would not affect the filming schedule. I am very happy that I got the chance to thank Jonathan Chik (戚其義) on stage. He was the one who enlightened and introduced me to television production. After graduating from the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts, I signed with ATV, and Jonathan was the first producer I worked with. He and his crew would always discuss the script, share their ideas, and it allowed me to understand more about the production process. I’ve learned to appreciate the backstage crew members a lot more. It was also him who brought me over to TVB. I am really thankful.”
Sunny returned to TVB in late 2012 to film the period-comedy drama, The Day of Days <初五啟市錄>. The Lunar New Year drama completed its 20-episode broadcast on February 15.
“Sonija Kwok (郭羨妮) and I shared a Frog Prince love story, while the relationship I had with Raymond Wong(黃浩然) was kind of like the emperor and Wei Xiaobao in The Duke of Mount Deer <鹿鼎記>. The show was relaxing and funny; I had a great time filming it.”
Source: Ming Pao via ihktv.com
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