“A Bite of China 2″ releases MV, to air on Friday

Warning: do not watch when hungry!

Warning: do not watch without food!

April’s most anticipated sequel (sorry, Bu Bu Jing Qing) is finally coming! The 8-episode sequel to the hit documentary “A Bite of China” will air on CCTV on Friday after a two months delay in production. The series, a story of Chinese food, but more important the people behind the food, was one of China’s biggest hits in 2012, and marked a major comeback for the very underrated CCTV 9 documentary channel.   If you haven’t watched, season 1 is readily available on YouTube with both English subs and dubs.

I teared up just watching the beautiful behind the scenes extra MV below. While you’re waiting, I highly recommend CCTV’s documentary Peony 牡丹, which uses a similar method of using an object (this time the Peony) to tell stories of both individuals and society, their history, and their dreams. The narrator and production teams also overlap.  Are you excited, or are you already screaming in joy?

Qiong Yao Accuses Yu Zheng of Plagiarism

Qiong Yao vs. Yu Zheng

Qiong Yao vs. Yu Zheng

To no one’s surprise, producer-screenwriter Yu Zheng is being accused yet again of plagiarism. This time, the charge comes from well-known novelist Qiong Yao, who claims that his currently airing drama, Palace 3 (宫锁连城), copied her novel-turned-1993-series Plum Blossom Scar (梅花烙). The event then spurred on a number of accusations toward Yu Zheng for copying varying works, including by former scriptwriters.

Qiong Yao, whom readers may know best as the creator of Princess Returning Pearl/My Fair Princess (还珠格格), published an open letter to SARFT on Sina Weibo on Tuesday afternoon. In this lengthy indictment, she writes that she was preparing to remake Plum Blossom Scar, with an anticipated 2015 broadcast, only to discover that Palace 3 was a copy of her own story.

The similarities between the two series have not gone unnoticed by viewers. Even Palace 3 actress Shirley Dai commented that Yu Zheng’s work was born out of Plum Blossom Scar, a scandal that caused a fallout between Yu Zheng and Dai. Both plots involve a switcheroo of the two main characters as a result of a preference for boys, and a similar love triangle between the three leads, although Yu Zheng’s series branches away then by doing a remix of Painted Skin II by having the two lead females switch skins.

Qiong Yao claims that this incident has caused her to fall ill from anger and that she has stopped all work, including a screenplay for her own adaptation, for which she has already completed 25 episodes. Her daughter-in-law, who serves as the manager of Qiong Yao’s mainland-based production company New Image, contacted Hunan TV, the almost exclusive broadcaster of the company, to ask the channel to halt the broadcast of Palace 3, but it was to no avail.  Qiong Yao also asked her supporters to boycott Palace 3, in order to protest Yu Zheng’s lack of respect for copyright.

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Gossip-Tabloid Stills for Virtuous Queen of Han

Princess Guantao and Empress Chen Jiao discuss where they can add another phoenix to the palace decorations.


I noticed we had a lack of gorgeous stills for upcoming Hong Kong-Mainland co-production Virtuous Queen of Han, starring Raymond Lam, Wang Luodan, Jones Xu Zhengxi, etc., so I decided to fill that gap.

More pictures below the cut.

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I Am A Singer All-Stars: Season One vs Season Two

Finalists from both seasons of I Am A Singer return to the stage to duel it out, with a surprise twist.

Finalists from both seasons of I Am A Singer return to the stage to duel it out, with a surprise twist.

Have I just not been paying attention all this time, or are those sponsored beverages a lot more prominent in this episode? I don’t even know what they are. But I want to drink them.

This special episode pit the finalists of the first I Am A Singer 我是歌手 season against the recently concluded second season finalists. Season one finalist Huang Qishan, who appeared in last week’s finale, was absent in this episode and was instead replaced by Laure Shang. (Oh, I’m sure she had a very good reason for not being there.)
Just to note, some performances have not been uploaded onto HunanTV’s official YouTube channel. We’ll try and work our way around that.

The format differed slightly from previous I Am A Singer episodes. Instead of the usual free-for-all sing-off, season one and season two singers were paired together and went head-to-head in solo rounds. Some match ups were good. Some could have been better. The show started with a good one. Continue reading

Nirvana in Fire releases vintage stills

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If you’re in an arranged marriage, the next best thing to being in love is both being best bff’s and bamf’s.

AHHHHHHAHAHHAAHAHHA

Nirvana in Fire, the Kong Sheng-directed drama of “friendship” and revenge, released the first major set of stills of its cast.  Featured are the lead Hu Ge, his best friends played by Wang Kai, Chen Long, Jin Dong,  and Wu Lei,  and the female supporting cast of Liu TaoZhou Qiqi, Zhang Lingxin, and Wang Ou.

Also, it has been confirmed that archrivals Yu Zheng and Tangren will have their two actors, Zhang Hanzhe  and Hu Ge, playing the before-and-after of the lead character.   Next thing we know, Liu Shishi and Yang Rong will be playing siblings.  (In fact …  Yu Zheng said yesterday that he asked Liu Shishi about playing XiaoLongNv)  Continue reading

“Perfect Couple” watches a meteor shower, releases MV

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The cast cosplaying “Let’s Go Watch Meteor Shower”

 

As   Perfect Couple nears airing date on the 21st, the series is releasing plenty of goodies, this time their ending theme song MV and a series of Meteor Shower themed photos.    The song below is written by the amazing Lin Hai (Da Ming Palace), with lyrics by Tonghua.   More photos of the leads, Tang Yan, Wallace Huo, Gong Mi, and Huang Ming, below the cut.

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Musical drama releases more character posters

If anything, this drama needs to win the award for best character posters for a drama.

If anything, with four sets of character posters, drama needs to win the award for best character posters for a drama.

Another set of gorgeous posters for eeMedia’s musical drama and Hunan TV’s first air-as-you-film series, “Song of Vengeance/Journey to the Sing & War/Star Academy”. I love eeMedia’s visual design team N13 with all my heart but I wish the promotional posters and trailers actually gave us a glimpse of what the series is actually like. At least we have eye candy along the way?

Trailer below and more character posters of the cast, including veterans Huang Yida, Qin Lan, and Wang Yaoqing, as well as first-time drama leads Fu Mengni, Chai Biyun, Xie Binbin, and Ou Hao below the cut. The series airs this Sunday.

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Han Lei wins I Am A Singer 2014

The 46 year old singer beat out 11 other competitors throughout the season's run to claim the second I Am A Singer title.

The 46 year old singer beat out 11 other competitors throughout the season’s run to claim the second I Am A Singer title.

Remember when I said that the I Am A Singer 我是歌手 finale was going to be good? Well, I lied. It was pretty awful. In almost three and a half hours of airtime, we got about 24 minutes of good music. Proportionately, that’s like taking out all the main parts of a Pitbull song and just listening to the featured artist.

The first segment of the finale invited musical guests to duet with the seven finalists. Turns out, that wasn’t a great idea. And most of the finalists probably would have done better without their partners. Take a deep breath, here’s a rundown. Continue reading

Musical drama releases gleeful posters!

Who knows what the title is ...

A game about music maybe is tiny, but the battle for pureness and faith is great …

After the weird Battle Royale-type posters, eeMedia/Hunan TV finally released posters more fitting of their first musical idol drama 唱战记! Designed by my favorite N13, the posters are bright and fun, and includes more garbling of English.

Since the series seem to have a new English name every time a new poster series is released (Song of Vengeance - > Journey to the Sing & War – > Star Academy/Music Idol Drama), I will just call it the eeMedia musical.

Character posters of the student stars Huang Yida, Fu Mengni, Chai Biyun, Ou Hao, and Xie Binbin below the cut.
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I Am A Singer finale duets revealed (all the rumours were wrong)

Seven singers have been invited to perform with the seven I Am A Singer finalists. Some of them have appeared on the show before.

Seven singers have been invited to perform with the seven I Am A Singer finalists. Some of them have appeared on the show before.

Xie Ziming 谢子明, an entertainment magazine editor and Bibi Zhou’s I Am A Singer agent for this week, leaked the list of celebrity guests for the show’s final round on his Weibo account yesterday. Basically, none of the rumours we had heard were correct.

The "singing helpers" guest list for the finals is said to be: JJ Lin, Khalil Fong, Zhang Jiayi, Julian chen, Shin, Huang Qishan, Tan Weiwei. It seems like an odd little "intrusion." How they correspond to the seven singers is still unknown, but we do know that Friday night's show will be on the air for three hours, almost as long as the Spring Festival Gala. Who will @Bibi sing with? (I really have no idea.)

The “singing helpers” guest list for the finals is said to be: JJ Lin, Khalil Fong, Zhang Jiayi, Julian chen, Shin, Huang Qishan, Tan Weiwei. It seems like an odd little “intrusion.” How they correspond to the seven singers is still unknown, but we do know that Friday night’s show will be on the air for three hours, almost as long as the Spring Festival Gala.
Who will @Bibi sing with? (I really have no idea.)

To the disappointment of some fans, the revelation quashed earlier rumours of possible appearances by Jane Zhang and Wang Leehom. Later reports paired the guest singers with the I Am A Singer finalists. Continue reading