ATV has been on a downward spiral for the past few years, and nothing has turned the situation around.
The latest futile attempt to stop the fall of ATV was to have the artists attend a training class 5 days a week for 4 weeks. All Mr. and Miss Asia’s that signed with ATV, the homegrown singers, and any artists under ATV contracts must attend. The instructors are the upper management team and a few experienced actors. Unfortunately, most artists found the classes, such as introduction to ATV’s history, non-relevant and stopped attending after the second day. When majority investor Wong Ching (王征) showed up for his pep talk, only a few artists were present. Wang naturally was not impressed and later some artists, including Priscilla Chi (戚黛黛), Ben Chung (張啟樂), Aki Chan (陳綺雯), and Che Che (車車), were fired.
When some ex-ATV’s artists, William Chak (翟威廉), Alice Chan (陳煒), Pinky Cheung (張文慈), and Stephen Au (歐錦棠) heard of the incident, they were upset with their former-boss and expressed their anger.
Artists Should be Cherished
William Chak, who left ATV in 2009 and now works for TVB, was up in arms about his former employer’s policy. Although he was not sure what happened behind the scene, William said he knew the artists that were fired. “Many of them are decent artists. For example, Priscilla Chi is multi-talented and a rare find in the industry.” William said, “I have worked with many of the artists before, so I am sure many of them are loyal to ATV and support the company. The artists are the TV station’s most valuable assets, and should be appreciated and cherished.”
Another former ATV artist, Alice Chan, was perplexed as to why the artists were asked to attend a course in ATV’s history when many of them already know even more than the owner. Alice mentioned that one of the fired employees, Ben Chung, has never been late to work, studies his scripts well, and is a fine lyricist. “A truly talented artist,” Alice said, “I was really at a loss why Ben was fired.” When asked if she will recommend TVB to recruit Ben, Alice said, “Unfortunately, I don’t have such clout.”
Pinky Cheung wrote on her Weibo, “I can no longer stand Wong Ching’s behavior. The reason why ATV’s rating is hitting rock bottom is not because of the artists, not because of the company, but because of the owner! I have not been around ATV for a few years, but I still have plenty of friends there. When I saw Wong Ching forcing the artists to parade with him to stop the issuing of additional TV licenses, I felt sorry for the helpless artists working there.” Pinky said that while she cannot stand the owner, she does not want ATV to go away. However, she was infuriated and needed to vent for her ex-colleagues.
Wong Ching Leads ATV’s Downfall
Stephen Au, who left ATV in early 2000’s, was even more furious on the firing of the artists. “When I heard about the training class ATV artists have to go through, I was speechless. For new artists, yes, I can see the reason for doing so. For many who already have years of experiences, why?” Stephen said there is absolutely no reason to fire the artists, and exclaimed that Wong Ching is the one who will lead the downfall of ATV. When the reporter asked Stephen whether ATV should be more focused on productions than pulling stunts such as training classes, he answered, “Production? It’s a little too late!” Stephen also predicted, “The green light on the additional free-to-air television licenses will lead to ATV’s death.”
This article is written by Lance for JayneStars.com.