The Chinese-language entertainment industry is following Hollywood’s formula of rebooting old classics.
According to the Taiwanese media, producer Angie Chai (柴智屏), perhaps best known for producing 2001’s smash hit Meteor Garden <流星花園>—which is also based on the Japanese shōjo manga series Hana Yori Dango <花樣男子>—will be getting a brand new remake this year.
The studios will be investing NT$720 million in this updated version—nearly 30 times more than the money used to produce the original 2001 series. The new adaptation has already obtained permission from the original Japanese author, Yōko Kamio (神尾葉子).
2001’s Meteor Garden, filmed over 16 years ago, popularized Taiwanese television adaptations of manga series, and kickstarted a wave of idol drama adaptations in Asia. Barbie Hsu (徐熙媛) portrayed the main lead Dong Shancai (based on the character Makino Tsukushi, while then-newcomers Jerry Yan (言承旭), Vic Chou (周渝民), Ken Chu (朱孝天), and Vanness Wu (吳建豪) starred as the F4. As F4, the four leading men went on to become one of the most successful boy bands in Asia.
Meteor Garden spawned a supplementary mini-series Meteor Rain <流星雨> in 2001, and an official sequel, titled Meteor Garden II <流星花園II>, the following year.
According to Angie Chai, the new remake will be more faithful to the original story of the manga, and will be longer than the original series, at 48 episodes. Meteor Garden had only 27 episodes, and thus many stories from the original manga had to be cut.
The new Meteor Garden will be a co-production with Mainland China. A cast has not been finalized yet, but filming is expected to begin in August 2017 in Shanghai.
Hana Yori Dango has been officially adapted to numerous times on television. Following CTS’s version in 2001, Japan’s TBS adapted its own version in 2005, followed by a sequel in 2007 and a film in 2008. South Korea’s KBS adapted the manga, with the title Boys Over Flowers, in 2009.
This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.