Ending his 23-year work relationship with TVB, actor Eric Li’s (李天翔) final drama The Man Who Kills Trouble <解決師> has been fairly well-received since its broadcast.
Starring in the series as a cunning triad leader, Eric’s sinister portrayal of the character was highly praised by netizens. After fans witnessed Eric fighting in his suit last week, many viewers felt that he looked even cooler than male lead, Vincent Wong (王浩信).
In response to praise for his performance, Eric said, “My character is very different this time. In the past, I used to play roles that were evil from start to finish and there wasn’t a lot of character development. This time, my role is very humane, loyal, and sentimental despite being born in a triad family. It’s definitely my favorite role in my acting career so far. I’m really grateful for everyone’s support.”
Although Eric is 43 years old, he still possesses a fit physique as evident in his bathtub scene. Admitting that he purposely slimmed down just for that scene, Eric joked that he was angry after realizing most of his body would be covered by the tub.
Jobless in the Beginning
Leaving TVB this May, Eric already made the big decision to not renew his contract prior to getting cast as third male lead in The Man Who Kills Trouble. Working at the station for over two decades with nothing but minor supporting roles, Eric wanted to try something different.
Since leaving TVB, Eric sat home for two months without a job. He said, “I was very sad initially. I was unemployed and I sat home for two months until ViuTV asked me make a guest appearance in an episode of a variety program. I did try finding work online and thought about switching career fields too. Someone finally asked me to take part in a movie in July, and even though the role wasn’t big, I didn’t have any jobs lined up anyway. I started filming at the beginning of last month and we’ll finish at the end of this month.”
Asked about his future plans, Eric said, “I currently don’t have anything – the market is pretty bad right now. It can’t be helped. Someone needs to start a production before jobs can be created.”
Nevertheless, Eric doesn’t regret leaving TVB. “I was going to leave either way. In fact, this decision was already long overdue. I want to try filming movies so I hope someone can offer me a role. My biggest motivating factor in making this decision stems from my wife’s support – don’t look at me as someone who is cunning because of my past roles. I’m actually pretty dense. Without her, I wouldn’t know what to do.”