Starring Hu Ge (胡歌), the Wong Kar Wai-directed (王家衛) romantic series Blossoms Shanghai <繁花> is reportedly airing come September, after 3 long years! With scenes still being reshot on the fourth day of lunar new year, the drama is finally in its last stages of production.
To support filming efforts, Shanghai Film Co. spent a reported 500 million yuan on a local filming site for the director’s use, to replicate 1990s Shanghai portrayed in the award-winning novel by Jin Yucheng (金宇澄). Responding, Shanghai Film Group chairman clarified it was “incorrect” to say that pre-production costs for Shanghai Blossoms amounted to 500 million yuan, as even though it was a fixed asset, the sum will not be included in the film’s production costs, since its use is not exclusive to Blossoms Shanghai.
Hu Ge’s Love Interests
Narrating the struggles and rise of male protagonist Ah Bao from the lower rungs to high society, the drama is also a microcosm of Shanghai at that time. With Shanghai-born Hu Ge in the lead, it will showcase the battle of wits and cunning in the world of business. His romantic dalliances with three leading ladies with distinct backgrounds and personalities – played by Tiffany Tang (湯嫣), Ma Yili (馬伊俐) and Xin Zhilei (辛芷蕾) at different eras of his life is another highlight.
Transporting Hu Ge back to his own “familiar, warm and colourful” childhood, the actor describes how he deeply experienced “the courage and determination to change one’s destiny through hard work, and the refusal to admit defeat” through the role.
All Eyes on Tang Yan
Actress Tang Yan stars as Ah Bao’s next-door neighbor, childhood friend and first crush, and spoke Shanghainese in the teaser trailer. Spending 3 years working on Shanghai Blossoms, Tang Yan has not taken part in any other productions other than the recent reality show Our Inn <我們的客棧>, since tying the knot with Luo Jin (罗晋) and welcoming their daughter. With other post-85 fadan actresses like Zanilia Zhao (趙麗穎) and Yang Mi (楊冪) headlining drama after drama, fans worry that she is too far behind and are criticizing her for “lacking career ambition”.
Industry watchers are hopeful that her performance in the Wong Kar Wai debut, if well-received will be a career-defining role for the actress, as Zanilia Zhao had done with her turns in realistic dramas Her Story of Xing Fu <幸福到萬家> and Wild Bloom <風吹半夏>.