TVB’s Legend of Empress Lu <呂后傳奇>, produced by Lee Tim Sing (李添勝), is going through yet another casting reshuffle. According to the latest reports, Tavia Yeung (楊怡) and Ron Ng (吳卓羲) will now lead in the Han Dynasty drama revolving around the life of Empress Lu Zhi.
The historical drama has been in pre-production since 2011, was originally scheduled to be part of TVB’s 2012 television drama lineup with Maggie Cheung Ho Yee (張可頤) in the titular role. After failing to assemble the cast together—and with Maggie’s exit from TVB in late 2011—the production was put on hold.
In 2014, TVB announced that it would bring back Legend of Empress Lü, starring TV Queen Charmaine Sheh (佘詩曼) in the lead. At the TVB Sales Presentation event last November, Charmaine, Raymond Wong (黃浩然) and Steven Cheung (張致恆) promoted for the drama, which would begin production in March 2015.
According to rumors, Charmaine was not satisfied with the casting in the series. It was also rumored that Charmaine felt uncomfortable working with Lee Tim Sing, whose recent dramas Bullet Brain <神探高倫布> and Noblesse Oblige <宦海奇官> did poorly in viewership ratings. Filming only one TVB drama per year, it was said that Charmaine wanted to film a series that would be a guaranteed hit.
Tavia Yeung Steps in as Empress Lu
TVB has replaced Charmaine with her Beyond the Realm of Conscience <宮心計> costar Tavia Yeung (楊怡), who starred in Lee Tim Sing’s Noblesse Oblige. Tavia was not the first choice to replace Charmaine. Lee Tim Sing originally wanted Myolie Wu (胡杏兒) to star as the Han Dynasty empress, but because Myolie’s contract with TVB is set to expire soon, it was a safer choice to cast Tavia instead, who renewed her TVB contract in 2014.
Ron Ng (吳卓羲) has also replaced Steven Cheung as Liu Ruyi, the Prince of Zhao. Raymond Wong remains on-board as Emperor Gao, Lu’s husband.
This article is written by Addy for JayneStars.com.