Grace Chan Gets Hate for Using Wrong Chinese Idiom, Kevin Cheng Defends, “It’s Not That Bad!”

By on November 22, 2016 in NEWS

Grace Chan Gets Hate for Using Wrong Chinese Idiom, Kevin Cheng Defends, “It’s Not That Bad!”

At the TVB Anniversary Gala held on Saturday, event MC Grace Chan (陳凱琳) had people shaking their heads with tears and laughter when she uttered a wrong Chinese idiom to the camera, causing veteran host Carol Cheng (鄭裕玲) to immediately clarify the mistake after commercial break.

The annual live show, which was to celebrate TVB’s 49th anniversary, was hosted by Carol Cheng, Liza Wang (汪明荃), and Nat Chan (陳百祥), with the support of co-hosts Grace Chan, Janis Chan (陳貝兒), Wong Cho-lam (王祖藍), Luk Ho-ming (陸浩明), and 2016 Mr. Hong Kong runner-up Karl Ting (丁子朗).

In an MC segment where Grace was to express her thoughts on the hard work by TVB artists, the Canadian-raised actress erroneously used the four-character idiom “smashed into pieces” (粉身碎骨; fan san seoi gwat) instead of “dashing ahead regardless of safety” (奮不顧身; fan bat gu san). Carol immediately clarified Grace’s actual meaning after commercial break.

Grace’s misuse of her four-character idioms stirred netizens’ interest, and the Brother’s Keeper 2 <巨輪II> star once again became a hot topic of discussion online. Netizens left both negative and positive reactions toward Grace’s mistake.

Her boyfriend Kevin Cheng (鄭嘉穎), who showed up at a camera commencement ceremony for the new Fruit Chan (陳果) film Made in Kowloon <九龍不敗>, defended Grace and said, “She’s never really studied Chinese before, so she always messes up her idioms.” (What language do you guys communicate in?) “Sometimes Cantonese, sometimes English. Mandarin too. So three languages.”

Kevin said it is not uncommon for Grace to mix up her idioms, as she often commits the same mistakes when she’s shooting dramas. “This isn’t her first time. When she was working with my friend Ben Wong (黃智賢) in a drama, she always got her idioms mixed up in her dialogue. But because she said them so naturally and fluently, it took them a while to realize it.”

The 47-year-old found Grace’s mistakes endearing, adding that he would make sure to give her more advice “when [he goes] home.” He then added with a laugh, “She wanted to say ‘fan bat gu san,’ right? Not bad! It kind of makes sense. Both have the word ‘fan’! We get what she’s trying to say. Both can be interpreted to mean hard working.”

After interviewing Kevin, the reporters phoned Grace, who said, “[Kevin’s] always been very supportive and encouraging. When I shot Wulin Revial <翻生武林> with John Chiang (姜大衛) and Ben Wong, they always joked about how I spoke fluent gibberish.”

Source: Oriental Daily

This article is written by Addy for

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  • 27 comments to Grace Chan Gets Hate for Using Wrong Chinese Idiom, Kevin Cheng Defends, “It’s Not That Bad!”

    1. janet72 says:

      of course her uncle will find her endearing…but as an MC, isn’t she supposed to memorize her script?
      miss hongkong winner 2013 is a gone case…cannot act, cannot be compere.

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    2. m0m0 says:

      i didn’t know she’s that bad, i thought she was a native speaker. she speaks w/o an accent and sounds really fluent in dramas.

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    3. coralie says:

      I think that’s a hilarious and yes, endearing mistake. What’s funnier is that people don’t even realize she made a mistake until after the fact (except Carol Cheng caught her this time.)

      Sometimes if people are too polished on stage, it kind of feels too rehearsed and fake. What made previous Ms HK pageants wonderful was that there were so many unexpected quips and quick thinking needed. People like unpredictability. I consider Grace’s mistake here as a social blunder, but an adorable one nevertheless.

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    4. llwy12 says:

      Ok, Grace. Messing up dialogue while filming a TV series is not a big deal, as that is what re-takes are for – it’s common and pretty much every artist does it. Hosting is completely different though. As a host, especially of ‘big shows’ such as the anniversary gala, there are no “second chances” – you have to be constantly on top of your game and make sure the right things are said at the right times. Honestly, if Grace Chan doesn’t know Chinese, what business does she have hosting? The part that irks me is how everyone trying to defend Grace is making the situation out to be no big deal and giving her every excuse in the book (like she is allowed to be unprofessional and screw up because she doesn’t know English so cut her some slack…NOT!).

      On a related note: it’s sad how badly the anniversary galas have deteriorated over the years, whether in terms of content, artist participation, hosting, etc. This year’s anniversary gala was a joke and boring as hell (no wonder it got the low ratings it did). Definitely makes me miss those anniversary galas from the old days (80s, early 90s) where all the station’s top hosts came together (none of this stupid unprofessional MHK hosting thing, which TVB started doing in the late 90s and I’ve hated from the start) – even the ‘guest hosts’ every year took the gig seriously, performed their job professionally, and did not try to overshadow the main hosts (and most of these guest hosts were big name stars at the time, such as Chow Yun Fat for example). Also, every single minute of the show was worth watching back then — the performances were top notch, the skits were truly hilarious, the game segment for artists to win top prizes was exciting and fun (I could go on and on…). Back then, the anniversary gala was truly a grand affair and as an audience, you actually felt it! Nowadays….well, let’s just say that the anniversary galas from the past 10 years have been unorganized, unprofessional, and largely FORGETTABLE!

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      • ivan replied:

        @llwy12 this years anniversary gala is the very badly done and one of the worst . Btw wat was the viewership ratings ?

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        • llwy12 replied:

          @ivan Average 22.9 points, peaked at 25 points – that’s way lower than what it was back in 2014 when the average ratings was 25 points (and that gala was dubbed lowest ratings ever – well, not anymore now).

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      • tiffany replied:

        @llwy12 Grace is not even good. Stop asking her to host!

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        • janet72 replied:

          @tiffany as a miss hong kong winner, she has to do some work…tvb must be thinking since she can’t act, why not give her an opportunity to shine elsewhere but she screwed up as well.
          it’s really unfair that she is given chance again and again when there are far better actresses than her.

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    5. happybi says:

      I actually think it was pretty hilarious that she made that mistake.

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      • llwy12 replied:

        @happybi I think in any other show, yes, it would be funny (and people like me probably won’t even care that Grace made such a rookie mistake) – but the anniversary gala is different. In the past (more like back in the previous eras), the anniversary gala was TVB’s most important and prestigious show of the year, which is why it was such a grand event where they went all out, pulled in all their best hosts, and everyone (artists as well as behind-the-scenes people) gave 110% effort in putting on a true extravaganza. The way TVB does it now (with inexperienced newbie hosts who haven’t the slightest idea what they are doing) makes the show seem less important to them (and perhaps it IS less important given that they have the anniversary awards now and that’s where all the hype is)….the anniversary gala pretty much went from being a grand production to child’s play (or a “kindergarten production” as Anthony Wong would put it, lol). Perhaps in a few years, the show will become like how JSG is now – if that happens, they should just cancel the show rather than put us long-time anniversary gala watchers through the torture of a haphazardly put-together show that lacks substance and sincerity.

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        • happybi replied:

          @llwy12 Maybe because I never take these gala seriously and being how it sound boring.. the part she messed up must be the peak of the show! ehehhehe

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        • llwy12 replied:

          @happybi Haha! Hey, you could be right – maybe that segment was where the 25 point peak rating came from! If that’s the case, then from TVB’s perspective, it was right to choose her as host, lol.

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        • happybi replied:

          @llwy12 Basically TVB doesn’t give a crap about their viewers so they don’t care who host the gala anymore. Even with low rating, they will still get advertising fee as no competition out there yet.

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    6. funnlim says:

      You know what? Maybe she did mean what she said. The actors indeed doing all those stuff nearly fan san sui guat! Not wrong just different context.

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    7. wworth says:

      Well, I always say this if you are not 100% certain don’t speak it? haha LOL….It’s nothing if you say it to your friends/colleagues but on national television? Man, you can easily tell how TVB is full of talents? haha lol…That’s more than funny come on…. And of course matured b/f will defend her what else can he do? Ohhhh…she’s like those Hollywood Celebs any news is good news? you know more media attentive to her even thou it’s a stupid mistake?

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    8. melodylai says:

      I’ve read before (i think it’s on this site) that she can’t read much chinese characters, in dramas she has her script translated/someone to help her go through it, it is understandable though since she grew up overseas, I can relate as I was born and raised in England, I can barely read a full sentence of chinese characters.. even with having gone to chinese school for 2 years!
      Grace Chan aside, I’m quite surprised they let Karl host so soon, and that it’s him over Jackson since he won Mr HK.

      Login or Register before you can reply to melodylai
      • llwy12 replied:

        @melodylai True, but to be honest, that should have little relevance because there are plenty of examples of artists in the same situation (born overseas, not knowing much Chinese, need scripts translated, etc.), but are still able to succeed in the entertainment industry without having to use the language thing as an excuse. If Grace is serious about having a career in HK, then she should put more effort into learning the language – in a way, it’s a respect issue for audiences who are watching her perform (this applies not just to Grace, but also any other artists who feel they have a ‘language barrier’ that limits their abilities). Like Dodo said when she “corrected” Grace’s mistake – as artists, they need to be accountable to the audiences who are supporting them by watching the show – which is why I appreciate the way Dodo handled the situation in terms of clarifying Grace’s meaning (without calling her out directly), but doing so in a half-joking manner so as not to embarrass Grace in public (Grace should feel lucky that there are senior artists like Dodo at TVB who are still willing to ‘put money in juniors’ pockets’ like that – many veteran artists have said that they don’t bother giving advice to juniors anymore because they had too many bad experiences with the current generation giving them attitude and not wanting to hear their advice).

        Yea, not sure why they had Karl host instead of the actual winner of Mr HK…maybe Jackson was busy (I don’t recall seeing him attend the gala)…

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    9. coralie says:

      Aiyo Grace is an entertainer. Being given an opportunity to host is not really that big of a deal. Even Carol et al didn’t start off as hosts. Over time they accumulated experience. If we were to discuss professionalism, Nat Chan, Carol Cheng, Lydia Shun and even Eric Tsang would’ve never gotten a chance if they didn’t start out in entertainment.

      Honestly I think most people would be forgiven if they made such a mistake as Grace. But lots of ppl dont like her and find opportunities to criticize.

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    10. 1piscesish says:

      Has everyone realized…ever since Grace Chan won MHK, she’s been hosting the TVB anniversary show every year? It used to be every MHK winner that year hosting, but this stopped happening ever since Grace won, which is kind of annoying and unfair to the other MHK winners (eg. Veronica Shiu, Louisa Mak, Crystal Fung). IMO, Grace’s voice is not very soothing as a host.

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    11. celin says:

      Of course the uncle has to say good thing about her otherwise how is she going to survive in the industry if her own uncle not supporting her. Cannot act, cannot host. Only thing she can do is to be a chatterbox.

      If her Chinese is poor, tvb should not let her be the host. Once on the stage, whatever words come out from the mouth, cannot Ng. She is making a fool out of herself.

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      • janet72 replied:

        @celin even though dramas can NG, she still screwed up…what more live on stage. can get her to attend voice and acting classes before taking on calefare roles?

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    12. megamiaow says:

      People need to lighten up, its just an honest (and hilarious) mistake.

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      • celin replied:

        @megamiaow Hilarious? Then the rating shouldn’t be so low. Everyone would be praising her for being a good joker.

        Mistake ? Then she is not qualify to be a host. Every words that she said, its showed live on air. Meaning she is a poor in her PR.

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        • megamiaow replied:

          @celin It is hilarious if you understand chinese properly. Maybe your just too uptight. Non one is giving out oscars for her d, dont worry. Just laugh at the mistake and stop whining about how bad she is, its already known.

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        • celin replied:

          @megamiaow lol, if it’s hilarious, then Dodo shouldn’t help her to cover up her mistake.

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    13. janet72 says:

      hosts do have a script to memorize. i still love the late lydia sum. she was really good. thank goodness we still have eric tsang, carol cheng and nat chan.

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