Tuesday, January 09, 2007

[Ta Kung Pao 10/01/07]

"The Seventh Day" Cast Set Out for Japan

Niki Chow, Kevin Cheng, Selena Li and other cast members headed out to Nagoya yesterday morning to continue filming on location for TVB's new series "The Seventh Day" on a trip that will last ten days. Bosco Wong, Natalie Tong and Charmaine Li will be heading over to Japan next week to join the group at their second location site at Kanazawa, but they were also at the airport yesterday to see their colleagues off.

This is the first time visiting Nagoya for Niki and as she has to go and film in some villages, she will not be able to go shopping. Her favourite food is sushi, but with the recent reports of norovirus in Japan, the cast and crew have been warned not to eat any sushi or go to the hot springs. She smiles: "My mother also told me to be careful and the weather there is very cold, and I had a chest infection earlier, so I have brought a lot of clothes to keep warm and a dozen pairs of tights, as well as a hundred warm packs. (With you spending every day with Kevin, are you afraid of the paparazzi?) I know that some magazines will be following us around and I am afraid of them breaking into my room, but I will not actively avoid them."

As for the recent reports about Niki's sister Kathy finally issuing legal writs against two magazines for their reports alleging her cosmetic surgery, Niki supports her sister and says: "If you are pretty, you attract gossip, but I don't understand why they are targeting my sister. She did not say anything before and kept getting bullied, so now she should fight back. The reports say that my sister has had as many as 30 procedures, so not only is it exaggerated, it is a personal attack."

Niki adds that her sister has had some of her ads terminated as a result of these reports, so she has passed this to her solicitor to calculate her losses. She says angrily: "Each time there is news about cosmetic surgery, they have to involve my sister, any normal person will change over the space of ten years. However, it is all in the hands of the lawyers now. (There are suggestions that the doctor will be revealing his client list?) So funny? No comment. Please don't frame my sister, unless you have evidence."

With the recent rumours linking Bosco and Natalie, will there be any awkwardness when they head out to Kanazawa together to film? They both say that they will not avoid each other. Bosco syas that when you are filming, it is inevitable that there will be rumours, so he will not take it to heart and will just act normal. Natalie will just go with the flow, just like filming a series. Although they play a couple in the series and will have some close contact, they both say that there is no chance of the love turning real.

Kevin was presented with three hand-knitted scarves by his fans yesterday to keep him warm in Japan. He syas that his very first girlfriend tried to knit him a scarf and he still has it because it has great sentimental value that is priceless. He also reveals that the TVB wardrobe mistress has also knitted him a scarf and he has taken it with him to Japan. Asked why she did this, he smiles: "Because she likes me! You just have to be good to other people and they will be good to you in return." As for the recent magazine reports that he is having injections to keep him alive, he smiles: "I am curious about why people always say that I am unwell. I have high blood pressure, but I just have to be careful of my diet and I am fine. I am not diabetic because I have a hard-working life and have to keep on working."


[Ta Kung Pao 10/01/07]

Kenneth Ma and Monie Tung were dressed in retro costumes to take part in a press event for a communications company and as their earlier ad copied the image of Lui Kei and Connie Chan, they reprised their roles for this event. As well as receiving a tidy fee for his ad, Kenneth has also been given a discount on his long distance calls.

Kenneth has been busy filming recently for new series "Curious Detective" and for the Chinese New Year, he will be going on vacation to England with his family. He reveals that he will soon become an uncle for the second time. Asked if he would like to be a father, he smiles that he has thought about this all along, but he has to settle down first. He has heard to to raise a child costs $4 million and he does not have a partner yet, so he will plan this when he meets someone. When the reporters jokingly asked whether Margie Tsang was a good lady, he sighed and looked helpless.

Monie wore a red retro dress and she revealed that during filming, the had to exaggerate her hips because her own bum was not big enough. However she laughs that with the pads on, it was very comfortable sitting down. As for the fee, she will leave it down to Kenneth to sort out because she sees him like a father. Monie will soon be heading out to Shanghai to film an independent film "July's Good Wind", where she plays a mature woman in her thirties, in debt and sorrow after her mother's death. This film began filming in October last year, but it stopped for a while before restarting this month. She is worried that after such a long break, she will find it hard to get back into character.


[Ta Kung Pao 10/01/07]

Sammul Chan Heads Out to Hengdian

Accompanied by his manager, Sammul Chan headed out to Hengdian to begin filming for mainland series "The Last Princess", where he will stay for two months. As it is snowing there, he has taken a lot of winter clothing with him, including woolly hats, warm packs and duckdown blankets. He has also taken a lot of snacks and VCDs. Fortunately, he will be joined by Leila Tong and Suen Hing and possibly Kenix Kwok, so he will not be bored.

As he has to stay for two months, Sammul will be spending the Chinese New Year there, so he plans to find himself a local assistant. He says: "Last time when I was filming in Wushe, I employed a female assistant, but I couldn't help but help her carry things, so this time I will employ a male assistant, but they are harder to find."

Sammul will be playing a Peking Opera actor in this series and rumour has it that this role was eyed up by many mainland actors including Huang Xiaoming, but in the end, he was cast for the part, showing that he has been recognised. He says: "Before when I heard people say that Sammul Chan is heading into the mainland because he is not doing so well in Hong Kong, it made me a little unhappy, but if that was the case, then why would people give me such a part?"

In order to play this character, Sammul has started learning the Peking Opera stances and he finds this is quite difficult, often hitting himself with the double spears. In the days before filming starts, he will continue to take lessons from the mainland tutors and he will also employ a Mandarin teacher to tutor him because he hopes to become a host for large shows in he mainland, so he needs a good grasp of Mandarin.


(Pic 1 - Toronto, Pic 2 - Hong Kong, Pic 3 - Montreal, Pic 4 L-R - Johannesburg, Melbourne, Auckland, Manila, Bangkok)

[Ta Kung Pao & Ming Pao 10/01/07]

Miss Chinese International Tour Hong Kong Sights

The twenty contestants for Miss Chinese International 2007 took a tour of Hong Kong's attractions yesterday, taking a look around Ocean Park and then after lunch at the Jumbo Floating Restaurant heading over to the Ngongping 360 Cable Car in Lantau Island, taking a view of the Giand Buddha in the distance and visiting the Ngongping market.

As the weather was quite cold yesterday, most of the girls were dressed in their white jackets when they arrived, but when they had to take them off to pose for photographs, the girls were shivering from the cold. For some of the girls, this was their first visit to Ocean Park and they were very excited as they visited the Marine Life Centre and the pandas, taking photographs for themselves as they went around. As they left, they also attracted the attentions of many tourists from the mainland.

The girls then headed over to the Ngongping Cable Car, where it was even colder and as soon as the group photograph of the girls in their little tops and hotpants or mini skirts was done, the jackets went back on quickly. They attracted the attention of many members of the public and one person dragged Miss Hong Kong Aimee Chan off for a photograph. There were plenty of criticisms flying around, with Montreal's Bamboo Cui being singled out for having thick legs with a particularly harsh comment coming from a housewife who exclaimed that Bamboo's legs were the same size as hers, so how could she enter a beauty contest? When the girls put their coats back on, one heckler shouted: "There is nothing to see now they have their clothes on! Let's go." This year's contestants are of a high quality and among those on form and outstanding are Sydney's Sarah Song, Calgary's Yvonne Chapman, Johannesburg's Ivy Lu and Hong Kong's Aimee Chan. There is also early speculation over Toronto's Sherry Chen as being a dark horse because of her resemblance to Lin Chiling.

For Aimee, this was her first ride on the cable cars and she introduced the sights to the other girls along the way and teaching some of them how to speak Cantonese. She has visited the Giant Buddha on a few occasions though. She says that she did not feel too cold despite the weather and that their rehearsals have been quite intense, but it has been a great experience and she has now moved to the hotel to be with the other girls and she is sharing a room with Ivy. Ivy's sister Ina took the crown last year and asked if she feels she is prettier or her sister, she smiles that they are very different, but also very special. Her parents are very easy-going, so they support her taking part.

The contestants from Singapore, Tahiti and Bangkok were not used to the rather chilly Hong Kong weather, whereas Toronto's Sherry Chen indicates that she likes Hong Kong's weather because it is snowing heavily in Toronto and in Hong Kong she does not have to wear as much clothing.

Full Contestant List (courtesy TVB Official Site):

1.Leung Ho Ting (Tina) - Seattle
2. Aimee Chan - Hong Kong
3. Suzanna Louisa Wu - San Francisco
4. Chen Shuang (Sherry) - Toronto
5. Leow Cai Ling - Singapore
6. Choi Chi Kwan (Chinzy) - Rotterdam
7. Erwina Catharina Maireraurii Chanson - Tahiti
8. Li Rui (Carol) - Pearl River
9. Wang Sining (Sirena) - New York
10. He Mingzhu - Chicago
11. Cui Zhu Zi (Bamboo) - Montreal
12. Song Xi Nian (Sarah) - Sydney
13. Yvonne Pann Chapman - Calgary
14. Su Xiaorui (Susana) - Vancouver
15. Lim Siew Theng (Novel) - Kuala Lumpur
16. Wisutthiphat Parichart - Bangkok
17. Rachel Tan Carrasco - Manila
18. Hsu Tzu Hsuan (Cindy) - Auckland
19. Jiang Jue (Jenifer) - Melbourne
20. Lu Yi Shuan (Ivy) - Johannesburg
21. Zhao Ying Ying - Nanning


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