It’s finally confirmed! The first big project for Louis Koo’s (古天樂) film production studio One Cool Film will be the time traveling epic Back to the Past <尋秦記>, the film version of TVB’s classic 2001 television drama A Step into the Past. Louis, who originally starred in the 2001 TVB drama, will return for the film, along with original stars Jessica Hsuan (宣萱) and Raymond Lam (林峯).
A Step into the Past is based on the novel The Chronicles of Finding Qin written by Huang Yi (黃易). It centers on the story of Hong Siu-lung, a Hong Kong police officer who participates in a time-traveling project, taking him back 2,000 years to the Warring States Period of ancient China. There, he meets a young Ying Zheng, the future Emperor of Qin.
Jessica Hsuan starred as Wu Ting-fong, one of Hong Siu-lung’s love interests. Raymond starred as the young future emperor. Louis won Best Actor for his portrayal of Hong Siu-lung, which was also his last TVB role.
A Step into the Past was a huge hit when it debuted in 2001, and it was one of the series that catapulted the then-rookie Raymond Lam into fame, and Louis into a superstar. A film version for the series has been in talks for years, but it was not officially confirmed until last year.
According to official press releases, Back to the Past will start production at the end of the year, with Louis, Jessica, and Raymond already signed to return. The film will be the directorial debut of Jack Lai (黎震龍), who has assisted directing experience in films like SPL 2 <殺破狼II>, Don’t Go Breaking My Heart 2 <單身男女2>, and The White Storm <掃毒>, all which starred Louis.
A full cast list for Back to the Past has not been revealed, and it is currently unknown if other original actors like Kwong Wa (江華), Sonija Kwok (郭羨妮), or Michelle Saram (雪兒) would return. Kwong Wa played the villainous yet charismatic swordsman Lin Chun who succumbs to a tragic fate. Sonija played Kam Ching, a female scholar who resembles Hong Siu-lung’s present-day girlfriend. Michelle Saram played Princess Chiu Sin, the daughter of King Hao-sing.
Recruiting some of the original cast members back would be a challenge. For one, it would be difficult to call back Kwong Wa to reprise his role, as the actor has already made the decision to semi-retire from the entertainment industry. It’s going to be strange to see Lin Chun being played by a different actor, but many netizens believe that Andy Lau (劉德華) could potentially be a good replacement, due to their similar aura.
On the other hand, seeing Sonija Kwok reprise her role would not be a surprise. However, Back to the Past will be a co-production with Mainland China, and Kam Ching seems to be a suitable role to be outsourced to Chinese actresses.
Though Singaporean actress Michelle Saram has already retired from the entertainment industry, she did make a comeback in 2017 for a special guest appearance in the action film Paradox <殺破狼·貪狼>. Louis and Michelle are good friends, and it was Louis who asked her to appear in the film. There is a possibility that Michelle could make another comeback appearance for Back to the Past.
Jimmy Au (歐瑞偉), who starred as Wu Ting-fong’s close friend and assistant Manager To, has expressed his interest in reprising his role for the film. In a brief phone interview, the Come Home Love <愛·回家> star said, “I haven’t heard anything about it yet, but I would love to play Manager To again. I really like this character, and besides, it’s such a big production. Any actor would love to take part in this!”
This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.