Chen Xiao and Michelle Chen Impress Viewers in First “The Condor Heroes” Trailer

The Condor Heroes <神鵰俠侶>, starring Chen Xiao (陳曉) as Yang Guo and Michelle Chen (陳妍希) as Little Dragon Girl, released its first trailer yesterday. Though netizens had previously expressed doubt about the leads, many of them were impressed by Chen Xiao and Michelle’s acting in the preview.

As the newest adaptation of Jin Yong’s (金庸) classic wuxia novel, producer Yu Zheng‘s (于正) The Condor Heroes has been the subject of much dispute since it began filming last year. Michelle was frequently criticized for being too chubby to play the ethereal Little Dragon Girl, while Chen Xiao was thought too young to portray the older version of Yang Guo.

The released trailer gave audiences their first chance to judge Chen Xiao and Michelle on screen. Near the beginning of the video, the two are seen meditating and practicing martial arts in a field of flowers. Their romance seems to be developing well, until one caption hints at their impending separation: “Forever in my heart, though no longer by my side.” As expected, the trailer then shows the many ensuing difficulties that Yang Guo and Little Dragon Girl undergo.

After watching the trailer, some netizens changed their tune about Michelle, saying she comes across better in moving video than in still photographs. However, others were still dissatisfied, claiming they were “unable to accept Michelle’s baby fat.” In response, Chen Xiao defended his costar: “I know that the previous versions of Little Dragon Girl are classics, but completely denying the drama before it airs is not fair to the actors.”

Since Yang Guo and Little Dragon Girl are separated for 16 years, netizens wondered if Chen Xiao, who is only 26 years old, could portray post-separation Yang Guo with enough poignancy. After seeing the scenes in the trailer, many netizens commented that Chen Xiao had not disappointed them and that his acting had improved. His fans are also eager to see how playing Yang Guo will affect Chen Xiao’s career, as the character has boosted the career of actors who portrayed him in previous adaptations, such as Andy Lau (劉德華), Louis Koo (古天樂), and Huang Xiaoming (黃曉明).

“The Condor Heroes” Trailer

[vsw id=”z_dxSoFQrxA” source=”youtube” width=”500″ height=”375″ autoplay=”no”]


This article is written by Joanna for

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  1. To be honest, it looks visually stunning, but then again Yu Zheng only produces visually beautiful dramas with mostly screwed up story lines. Seeing that this is a remake of one of the most popular stories, I am not impressed. Michelle Chen, loved her in Apple of my Eye, but something is still lacking, albeit her acting might be on point in this but I still feel like Little Dragon Girl needs to be breathtakingly beautiful. As for the changes Yu Zheng has made in the plot, I am truly afraid of what is to come from them. He is definitely known for destroying masterpieces.

    1. Compared to Idy Chan (Chan Yuk Lin) in TVB’s original “The Condor Heroes” (神鵰俠侶), Michelle Chan is totally lack of charisma, charm, and prettiness. She is not impressive at all as Little Dragon Girl.

      1. michelle chen has a more girl next door feel. and everybody expects little dragon girl to be a beautiful girl with an aloof/reserved personality.

    2. after so many adaption of this drama i think he just want to give the audience something fresh something different from the original,but he fail for the cast already.

    3. The trailer (from 0.40) seems to suggest romance between 东邪 and his disciple,梅超风. I truly hope it’s just my imagination.

      1. it happened in the new version of the novel. (shudder)

      2. @Charbydis
        It did? OMG, I recalled reading the older version and nothing of the sort happened. I can finally understand why fans complain about the amended new version of his novels.

    4. What did you guys think of Idy,Carmen and Liu Yi Fei as XLN then???

      1. I loved Carmen and Idy is a close 2nd. Liu Yi Fei as XLN was lacking in acting ability, but she is absolutely beautiful. She, in my opinion, is what I would imagine XLN to look like in reality.

      2. in my opinion vivian chow would be the best siu long lui ever,but unfortunately she never got the chance to do it.

      3. Personally I like Idy Chan the best as XLN. Liu Yi Fei is pretty too, but XLN should be a lot older than Yang Guo, and Idy looked older than Andy Lau in the older version of “The Condor Heroes”. Don’t know who was the actor for Yang Guo in Liu Yi Fei’s version.

      4. Huang Xiao Ming was Yang Guo for Liu Yi Fei’s version, and the worst Yang Guo I’ve yet too seen. The guy just can’t act.

        Yu Zheng is out to get the classics. This may be the worst version yet with the overboard CG effects and changes that he made to the story. xD I will watch just to see how badly he ruins this one.

      5. Yeah i couldnt stomach the Huang XiaoMing’s version. I tried very hard to watch it, I really tried… But its just unwatchable

      6. To me, Carmen is the ideal XLN. She looks the part and she’s elegant, cold, heartless to everyone except YG, and naive just exactly like in the book. The costume and hair is simpler and nicer. Too much makeup in the 80s version. Idy is also very good but she looks too kind and lively. Liu Yi Fei is more to cute and lively but she’s gorgeous and still very young.

        On the other hand, Andy is better as YG than Louis.

      7. Idy definitely hands down nailed the “Little Dragon Girl” back in the 80’s. Couldn’t watch the remakes, I remembered why I didn’t watch Carmen’s version,it was because I couldn’t get past the poor acting in the first few episodes. Have not seen Liu Yi Fei’s version, but her costume and stills in pictures makes her similiar to Idy’s “Little Dragon Girl” so I would say Idy #1 and Liu Yi Fei #2 and only those two would be my ideal “Little Dragon Girl”

      8. I thought the 80s version was best to me since I grew up with it and did enjoy Idy and Andy in their roles. Later on I saw Louis and Carmen and they were pretty good too. Huang Xiao Ming and Liu Yi Fei were not that bad,but one thing I wondered was why they made her cough out blood so often? Did XLN have a bad case of TB?

        Idy is older than Andy but only by one year. Huang Xiao Ming played Yang Guo in Liu Yi Fei’s version. She is 10 years younger than zhuang Xiao Ming so they did not match in the age department.

      9. @HeTieShou
        Idy is older than Andy but only by one year. Huang Xiao Ming played Yang Guo in Liu Yi Fei’s version. She is 10 years younger than zhuang Xiao Ming so they did not match in the age department.
        Thanks for your information. According to the actual story, Little Dragon Girl should be quite a bit older than Yang Gao, theefore, it would not look good if Little Dragon Gril is younger than Yang Gao. Idy Chan looked very pretty, “pure”, and a bit mature than Andy Lau, therefore, they could be the best match. I remember that I also watched a few episodes of Carmen Li’s version, it was quite boring at the beginning, so I gave up on it.

    5. Lol, I would possibly watch this if they take all the actors n actresses from Carmen n Louis’s version :p that’s way it will be perfect? Nice visual for the best couples :p I just love the chemistry between Louis and Carmen, and to me, she’s the best XLN

    6. I don’t think there was anything impressive about the actors or actresses in the trailer……….it’s just a simple rehash of the original versions but with a lot of special effects………I prefer the older original versions such as with Idy Chan and Andy Lau.

    7. Wow I didn’t know he was also in charged of this one too! Qiong Yao, I’m with you! I hope Jayne updates us on this matter.

  2. She’s still not beautiful enough. Im not sure why anyone would change the mind of that fact.

    1. I think shes pretty but I see her more of a supporting type and not main cast. And as cute as chen Xiao is, to me his face is too baby-looking especially here compared to Palace. XLN IS suppose to be older than YG but in this case, they look more like teenage siblings. My favorite remakes were Carmen/Louis and Idy/Andy.

  3. Don’t know how i feel about this.. Michelle just doesn’t look the role & Yu Zheng is gonna butcher the storyline like he always does.

    1. If only her arms were spreading outward, we would have titanic on hand :p

  4. This drama is so beautiful…visually. But I just can’t get pass Michelle as XLN. She’s not even pretty! Chen Xiao looks great though, so hopefully, Yang Guo’s role suit him. I thought he did well in Female Prime Minister.

    I don’t like Viann Zhang but from the trailer, she looks quite stunning.

  5. I’m boycotting Copycat Yu. Plus thus is a remake again, nothing interesting…

  6. The picture looks very photoshop, especially Michelle Chen. She looks like a drawing on the front cover of a chinese romance novel.

  7. The visual effects are great and that is all the trailer have. The most impressive actor in the trailer belongs to Viann Zhang. If she steals the show like she did for Tian Lung 2013, I wouldnt be surprised. Chen Xiao only looks good as kid Yang Guo, mature Yang Guo is out of his control. Michelle, with her good acting, lacks the charm.

  8. Yu Zheng is trying to milk this for all it is worth. I am so sick of the same old remakes. Remakes should get better and better but sadly in this case,things just get worse.

  9. Another masterpiece of Jin Rong has been screwed up by Yu Zheng again. Michelle Chen is definitely no XLN material. Don’t have to look at other things, just the hairstyle could kill the character. And too many remakes of this, what’s the point of having it done again? Plots change? Indeed, I guess.

    1. Who is Jin Rong? Do you mean Jin Yong? Anyways, I agree and this is one of JY’s novels that have remade the most. I am guessing it is because it is one of the most popular ones.

  10. i’m going to give this a go since i like chen xiao but if it’s anything like swordsman, then screw that

  11. Expecting to see romances that don’t exist in the novel.

    1. Not in novel:
      1) Hong 7 Gong’s love triangle
      2) Dugu Qiubai and wife

      Other possibility:
      3) Huang Yaoshi and his disciple, Mei Chaofeng (the latter, btw, should be dead in Return of the Condor Heroes novel)

      This version will also show the relationship between Wang Chongyang and Lin Chaoying as well as that of Ouyang Feng and his sister-in-law.

  12. looks like a kid version of yung gou and siu long lui lol.

  13. don’t know what to say,,,,, so sad for Little Dragon Girl image.. and so sad for Michelle play the role…… Yu Jing think he is a god or something,,,, he think he can changes everything,,, and this time he push it too much,,, will backfired,,, I am not looking forward to it..

    1. Who is Yu Jing? You mean Yu Zheng right? We all know how creative he can get,but then again if he were so creative then why does he plagiarize so much? Strange… Well anyone who hates it can just give it a pass.

      I found XAJH ridiculous but yet many liked and enjoyed it. The funny thing is they loved the change of DFBB as a woman and how she fell in love with LHC. You really wonder if people will like changes for this novel? I guess none of us should be shocked.

      1. @HeTieShou you really need to lay off on how people spell the names wrong. it appears as if you correct every person’s misspelled names.

      2. I am not trying to pick on people when names are spelled wrong but I seriously did not know who they were talking about. Misspelling names can make things get confusing.

      3. When Kitty Doan said Yu Jing,I was thinking of Wong Jing who also is famous for butchering JY novels.

      4. @HeTieSHou- Perhaps commenters should post the actual Chinese Characters of the Names that they are talking about. With so many different Chinese Dialects used in China, the way they sound out the name might be right to them. Especially when English names are not the official names that the Chinese Celebrities, actors and actresses, directors use. You can see that when the Chinese Celebrities all of a sudden uses a different English name, so I wouldn’t point out the person that they are wrong in spelling, since really, there wasn’t an official spelling in the first place.

      5. In fact, I don’t know 90% of those names spelled in Mandarin. I only know those very very popular ones, like Cecilia Liu Si Si, Ruby Lin Xin Yue, Chao Mei, Nicky Wu, Huang Xiao Ming, Fan Bing Bing, and a few others. If you don’t speak Mandarin, it is super hard to figure them out!

  14. too much cgi, lost classic feel, no traditional untouched scenery. too many camera “tricks” involved, just another kind of “hollywood” type of distraction but full of garbage storyline mind rotting trash with the way he butchers the storyline to make no sense. its visual gasm with no intellectual or original philosophy involved. all he has to do is hire ppl with cgi skills and pay for camera labor of skilled workers. theres very little work for him to do except put his name on someone else’s written work he butchered up. skip and the actors look out of place, awful like child’s play, no elegance in the face of michelle chen, just a incapacitated face in every scene.

  15. Amazing Michelle Chen…bravooooooooooooo @ Chen Xiao (陳曉)

    Be P o s i t i v e in Life……..

  16. Lost Daughter on its own is absolute travesty and Swordsman was travesty and continuing in YZ’s tradition where he has 100% control, this too will be a travesty. Oh yes he will do a different adaptation but believe me by the time he is done with this story all of you will be searching for Andy Lau’s or Louis Koo’s version.

  17. i just wish that will be a flop like
    Xiao Ao Jiang Hu 2012, that hunan tv cancel in the middle of diffusion time.


    1. Going by how the Swordsman got lapped up, this is going to be a hit :/

    2. Xiao Ao Jiang Hu 2012 was hit. Boasted Joe Chen career to a new height. The recent remake of DemiGod – Semi-Evil was a disaster and got cancel.

  18. This Chinese version could not compare HK version since 1983 & 1995.

    1. Wish the classic 1983 & 1995 versions were available online in HD/720p too.

  19. @ 39 seconds, is that Chris Lee who played Return of the condor heroes 1998 with Fann Wong?

    1. He was Yang Guo with his wife Fann Wong at Singaporean version since 1998.

      1. i know who he is, i’m just asking is that him or not.

  20. Watch the trailer yesterday night. The CGI is not impressive as I expected (from reading this article).

    “After watching the trailer, some netizens changed their tune about Michelle, saying she comes across better in moving video than in still photographs”

    She looks the same as in the stills. I really can’t imagine everyone in a room going ‘Whoa, she’s so beautiful!!’ when she entered when there are so many better look girls in the series.

  21. Poor Michelle, Yu Zheng basically PSed half of her face off. He might as well have put a mask on her. Maybe Yu Zheng isn’t only out to kill classics, but also out to ruin careers as well. Michelle was THE Shen Jia Yi after ‘You are the Apple of My Eye’. After accepting this role everything has changed, I can’t imagine what will happen after. Let’s hope her acting makes up for the lack in appearance, atrocious hairstyle, and everything else horrible Yu Zheng is capable of.

    1. Seems like Yu Zheng has actually made careers Not Ruin them. Why poor “Michelle”? She should be be blessed to be chosen to play such a classic well known beloved character. If you were offered to play “Little Dragon Girl” I am sure you would jump at the chance. Now, would I watch this? Not sure, as the Lead Guy is very good looking, but none of the remakes of the condor heroes has me captivated as the one from 80’s TVB, just by looking at pictures etc. Perhaps,they were the first or one of the first to adopt it to screenplay and did such a great job that really, there doesn’t need a remake of the series.

      1. To be able to play XLN is definitely an honor, but an actor/actress should know and understand which roles to choose. You don’t just jump at every acting opportunity you get. All you need is one bad acting role and you’re kicked out of the spotlight. Not sure if you saw how badly Michelle has been smashed and is continuing to get smashed by netizens. If this goes as bad as predicted and he completely screws with the story, she will also be affected.

      2. Well if you are someone struggling for jobs, then you have to take what you get. With the strong competition in the circle, you really wonder if you get to pick and choose, unless you are really famous and have a lot of connections.

      3. @Inter – An Actress/Actor can only choose roles if they have a bit of fame to them, and could choose from several. Never heard of Michelle before, so therefore, I doubt she has tons of scripts to choose from like Ruby Lin. Since most of Yu Zheng’s production has high viewing rates, I doubt this will harm Michelle, if anything it will make her more well known. “Little Dragon Girl” is a character most actress covet, therefore I don’t feel sorry for Michelle, rather she should be happy that she has a chance to play “Little Dragon Girl.” Not sure how much leverage netizens really have since well, netizens are so fickle. If anything, it would probably be the viewership percentage that they would look more on. GONG 3 I stopped watching, but due to it being the story of “Plum Blossom” and I got bored with it, however it seems like a hit in China, even though Netizens are berating it.

      4. Michelle is like the sweetheart of Taiwan. She appears in numerous movies every year and if you have never watched 那些年, that was a major hit in Taiwan. She is plenty known and I doubt that she lacks in roles.

  22. I tried to be open-minded but I really don’t see how the videos look any better than the stills for the girl playing XLN. In the novels and the other adaptations she is supposed to be so beautiful it distracts people to stop in the middle of fighting, but she is also kind of a flower vase with little personality in the novel.

    Michelle Chen is actually how I imagine Luk Wo Sheung to look like and a bit feisty.

  23. Why Yu Zheng is not open new version called Legend of Condor Heroes (射雕英雄傳) instead of Return of Condor Heroes (神鵰俠侶)? They should make this version instead.

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