“If director Cheng isn’t busy filming, I’ll go to the bathroom first!” Tao Mu suddenly said, reaching out and beckoning the two currently feeling annoyed with themselves for bungling things up. He said, “You two come with me.”
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Long Tianao raised his paws with a smile and siddled over with an ingratiating smile: “Me too——”
Before he finished speaking however, he was completely frozen in place by Tao Mu’s expressionless look. He didn’t dare to finish speaking, so he could only watch Tao Mu take the two childhood friends to the bathroom.
Cheng Baodong felt that he once again missed what had set Tao Mu off, so he looked around with bewilderment, “What’s the situation?”
No one responded. Only Wang Boyuan looked thoughtfully at Tao Mu’s back. He found that this child was very interesting, extremely clear on what was public and private and never ambiguous about the line in between. He also seemed to have a protective streak.
This was not in line with the slick and sophisticated manners he had always displayed.
“I say, what’s the matter with you two?” Under the guise of taking a bathroom break, Tao Mu dragged Da Mao and Xiao Pang into the bathroom. He raised his foot and kicked all the partition doors, confirming that there was no one inside before he asked them.
Da Mao and Xiao Pang seemed like two big dogs drenched by torrential rain. They glanced at each other dejectedly, and said with disappointed expressions: “We just want to help you.”
One was very tall and one was very wide, but at that moment both were trying to shrink themselves into a ball in the corner. Tao Mu felt both annoyed and amused.
“How do you want to help me?” Tao Mu raised his eyebrows and asked.
“Didn’t you say it before! Because your capital value is not high, those people don’t have any regard for you. The two of us discussed it and felt that this was indeed the case. So we thought of such a way——aren’t you particularly good in stock trading? If you can help those big celebrities and directors to make money in stock trading, they will definitely treat you well!”
Da Mao sniffled and confessed dejectedly: “I checked it all on the Internet. Wang Boyuan also likes stocks, but he was not lucky. This time the market fell, he lost tens of millions. Many entertainment media are reporting this matter. So we thought, if you can help him in the stock market, as an A-list superstar he can definitely look after you!”
What wishful thinking. Tao Mu chuckled, “What if I lost him money?”
Da Mao and Xiao Pang were full of confidence: “How can that be, brother Mu, you are such a genius and you have such a precise eye, you will definitely not lose it.”
“Do you think that the stock market was opened by our family?” Tao Mu looked at the two childhood friends. They both had kind intentions, but things weren’t done like this: “Have you two thought about it, what if I lose money for these bigshots in stock trading? Even if they can’t kill me, wouldn’t it be easy to join forces to ruin me in order to relieve their anger?”
There was actually such a possibility?
Da Mao and Xiao Pang were horrified and shocked. They finally realized the danger: “No way?”
They only felt that they had acted too hastily, which might affect the views of these big celebrities towards Tao Mu. They never thought that Tao Mu would lose money.
This kind of blind trust in Tao Mu was seriously…..who gave them such courage?!
“Why not?” Tao Mu snorted softly, but it wasn’t to scare the two of them.
The so-called money could shake one’s will. In the past and present life, Tao Mu knew very well how money, especially a huge amount of money, could push a person to the brink. There was a popular phrase in later years called “the rich can be willful”, and that was absolutely true. However, Tao Mu had lived for two lifetimes, and he had a deeper understanding of the phrase “the poor can only resign to fate”.
Before Wang Boyuan became a star, he was just from an ordinary family background. The savings of half his entire life were all lost in the stock market overnight, and directly transformed him from a state of “the rich can be willful” to “the poor can only resign to fate” without even a transitional period. To say that Wang Boyuan could still remain as calm as ever, he was afraid that even ghosts would not believe it.
At this critical point, Wang Boyuan would definitely be more sensitive on the issue of money. But it just so happened that Da Mao and Xiao Pang rushed right into it. Therefore, Wang Boyuan guessing that Da Mao and Xiao Pang were instigated by others, and then suspecting Tao Mu to have ulterior motives was very understandable.
It was precisely because of this that, although Tao Mu was very confident in himself, he did not want to provoke Wang Boyuan at this time——he wasn’t worried about anything else, but simply felt that him acting too eager would not reflect well on him.
In other words, even if Tao Mu was determined to use the method of stock investment to win over Wang Boyuan, it must be Wang Boyuan’s initiative and he could only reluctantly agree with it after careful consideration. Rather than the hasty self-recommendation that Da Mao and Xiao Pang made——
Of course, that Da Mao and Xiao Pang could think of opening up the situation from this area and helping Tao Mu to expand his social circle was a good starting point. But sometimes, good intentions might not be able to get things done, and more often, impatience lead to failure.
——After being reborn, with his gold finger Tao Mu only needed to take things steady. In fact, the start-up capital was already in front of his eyes. After waiting for another year and a half, Tao Mu was even confident that he could rake in hundreds of millions of capital for himself when operating in the negative global market situation. Although this money was still not a big deal to those wealthy groups and conglomerate business families. But it was enough for Tao Mu to build his own entertainment empire.
With such good prerequisites in hand, Tao Mu naturally didn’t have to rush to please anyone. Therefore, in the matter of accumulating contacts and forming a network to mingle into the Beijing circle, he had always maintained the basic method of “just becoming a familiar face”——keep it steady and gradual, tepid and lukewarm, while occasionally making his existence known from time to time. And on the way, he could also observe the personalities of these experienced and slick foxes of the Beijing circle. Just as Li Xiaoheng once observed him, Tao Mu also needed time to observe these bigshots from Beijing in order to determine who he could have a deeper friendship with and who he should only keep it business. Tao Mu naturally had different means to treat different people.
Speaking of, this kind of observer attitude was what Tao Mu learned from that very popular male escort. That person once told Tao Mu that everyone saw different scenery when facing a low period or a high period in their lives. The so-called various walks of life meant that different people would display different attitudes when facing a strong group and a disadvantaged group.
Before his rebirth, Tao Mu didn’t understand the usefulness of such observations. Of course, he didn’t have the mood to settle his mind and look at the world with an outsider’s eyes. After rebirth, Tao Mu found that this kind of bystander’s perspective was very interesting——not mentioning that these observation processes could ultimately be applied to acting. But in terms of observation results, it was enough for Tao Mu to be able to know how to artfully deal with people.
In this way, after Tao Mu’s capital and reputation have accumulated, he could target different groups of people, or take the initiative, or wait for those who wanted to make money to come knocking at his door. Then with the lure of favor and profit he could sort these contacts out and then use them as a stepping stone to further gain contact with the most powerful distributors and producers in the film and television industry. After he established his own network of connections, many things would become easy——whether it was investing in some good projects that laymen might not be able to access even with money, or making movies and TV series by himself, at least in terms of distribution and scheduling he would not be constrained by others.
People could be lured by the pursuit of profit. From this perspective, Tao Mu felt that there was nothing wrong with his two childhood friends’ thinking. It was just that their methods were not enough——in Tao Mu’s view, whether it was money or talent, it should be spent where it would be put to the best use. Blindly showing off wealth was certainly eye-catching, but it was too wasteful. It was better to do things subtly, gradually and silently. From there, many things would naturally follow like trickles of water flowing until it formed a canal.
To make it clearer. The so-called wealth could shake one’s will, since Tao Mu was a god of wealth who could help people make money, then he didn’t need to shamelessly offer himself——since it was to give money to people, then he should at least stand upon his dignity. Only when those who wanted to make money voluntarily come to his door, lower their posture and plead with him, could he slowly establish his status and influence in everyone’s minds.
This was also what junior high politics class spoke of, that economic foundation determined the superstructure.
When these words were told to the two, Da Mao and Xiao Pang finally realized. The two showed a thumbs up at Tao Mu, both with a face full of flattery, “You are really cunning.”
“Do you know how to talk! What cunning, this is resourcefulness! Resourceful, understand!” Tao Mu couldn’t help but pet the two dog heads: “So you two don’t have to worry. Since it is the economic foundation that determines the superstructure, no matter what you two say or do, as long as it is profitable and a win-win situation is guaranteed, it will be a good result in the end.”
So there was no need to worry about bungling things up.
Da Mao and Xiao Pang were once again enlightened. Then they said sheepishly: “Although it is like that. But we are still worried that our actions will make those people think about you badly…..”
Tao Mu snorted. So it was said that young people were too naive. What did the opinions of others matter? If you had the strength, people who had opinions about you would just have to hold it all back. If you were completely incapable, even if you had an extremely good personality, you would still be trampled under others’ feet.
The world admired the strong and pitied the weak. Just how respectful they were to the strong meant just how unscrupulous they would be to the weak. This was human nature. Da Mao and Xiao Pang didn’t understand now, but they would gradually understand later.
“Okay. Let’s go if there is nothing else. If we stay longer others will think we all have kidney problems!”
Seeing that Tao Mu really didn’t care much about this kind of thing, Da Mao and Xiao Pang, who had always trusted their brother Mu, also felt relieved. Da Mao scratched his chin, finally back in a mood to joke around: “You mean frequent urination, urinary urgency, and urine like rainwater?”
“What is that! Our state is obviously waiting to finish urinating!” Before Xiao Pang finished speaking, Tao Mu had already slapped his round head.
“Piss off, does it take you 20 minutes to finish peeing? Is this peeing the Yellow River?”
“Why is it the Yellow River?” Da Mao was confused when he heard the words, and then suddenly he realized, “Is it because the urine is yellow?”
Who wants to listen to you explain this! Tao Mu was speechless and pretended to kick the two out of the bathroom.
They were laughing and joking as they went back to the set. Mu Huating, who finally caught the opportunity, walked up to Tao Mu: “Tao Mu, brother Zhao wanted me to say a few words to you.”
Mu Huating had actually been following behind Tao Mu for a long time. It was just that Tao Mu’s aura was too strong just now, appearing somewhat dignified and intimidating. Even an arrogant and domineering hedonistic son of wealthy parents like Long Tianao didn’t dare to approach. Mu Huating also didn’t dare to follow too closely, just hovering a far distance outside the bathroom in a spot that wouldn’t let him hear the conversation between Tao Mu and his friends while also being close enough to catch any movement.
“I was keeping watch for you and no one went to the bathroom.” Mu Huating tried to awkwardly appease the other and then he hurriedly repeated what Zhao Keping had ordered him to: “Brother Zhao asked me to apologize to you on his behalf.”
According to Zhao Keping’s thoughts, he originally planned to leave Tao Mu high and dry for a few days after he was kicked out of The Legend of Heroes and wait for Tao Mu to come forward voluntarily after he could no longer take the huge gap from before and after. He would then give him a better audition opportunity than “The Legend of Heroes”. Zhao Keping was already familiar with this way of giving a slap and then handing over a sweet date——every artist under him had experienced the same thing.
However, he did not expect that bastard Ning Yuan to sow discord right after Tao Mu came out of “The Legend of Heroes.” Before Zhao Keping could come up with a countermeasure, Tao Mu had already entered the crew “Faraway Jianghu” under the introduction of Gou Rixin.
This series of events was so fast that Zhao Keping was left somewhat at a loss. On top of that, one of Zhao Keping’s artists provoked the TV station when he was shooting a variety show by acting like bigshot and in response the angry TV station leader planned to have all the media shut him out. Zhao Keping had to rush out to do damage control. This managed to delay him for another week.
After Zhao Keping settled these matters and returned to H Town, he didn’t know whether Tao Mu’s anger had cooled, so he asked Mu Huating, the only artist under him who had an interaction with Tao Mu, to see Tao Mu and get a hint of the situation.
Mu Huating actually didn’t like Tao Mu very much, especially after he was deliberately suppressed by Tao Mu in acting. Mu Huating always had the illusion that Tao Mu would violently hurt him at any time. But he didn’t dare to disobey Zhao Keping’s words——Wan Meihong was right. After Mu Huating was assigned to Zhao Keping by the company, over these years he was often trained by Zhao Keping. His original stubborn and mulish temper had long been smoothed out.
It was precisely because of this that even if Mu Huating was very intimidated by Tao Mu, he would still bite the bullet and come over on the orders of Zhao Keping,
“Brother Zhao said he wanted to invite you to dinner and have a good chat. He said that it was wrong of him to sit by and watch indifferently when you were kicked out of the crew of “The Legend of Heroes”. And especially since he also accepted your ten thousand yuan so now he wants to return this ten thousand yuan to you.”
Although he said that, what Zhao Keping really wanted was just an excuse to meet up with Tao Mu.
Tao Mu did not comment on this. But he really didn’t have time to deal with Zhao Keping now. Although Cheng Baodong don’t speak human words, one thing he said was right. Tao Mu was indeed a profit-seeking person. His energy and time would only be spent on people or things that he felt were worthwhile. But now, Tao Mu’s energy was focused on the people in the Beijing circle and the betting on the Olympics. In addition, he also had to take time to pay attention to the international futures market. There was no extra energy to deal with Zhao Keping’s emotions and pretend politeness with the other man.
“I can’t do it recently, I don’t have time. You go back and tell brother Zhao, I don’t care about the “Legend of Heroes”, and he doesn’t need to care either. I can understand and if there is a chance in the future, everyone can still cooperate.” Tao Mu dismissed Mu Huating with a few words.
Mu Huating looked at Tao Mu sheepishly, wanting to say something but in the end he didn’t say anything. He left early——after all, his original motive for following Shen Yu and the others over to the crew of “Faraway Jianghu” was not for visiting the crew.
On the other side, Zhao Keping, who received the call from Mu Huating, also sighed silently.
In fact, Zhao Keping had already begun to regret it when he saw Tao Mu’s remarkable composure when he was kicked out of the cast of “The Legend of Heroes”.
Tao Mu’s actions and manners were very different from the normal 18-year-old in Zhao Keping’s impression. He was neither youthfully impulsive nor frivolous and prideful. He was able to keep in mind the maximization of benefits despite facing such extreme injustices, and in the end managed to gain more than 100,000 yuan in compensation from Zhao Xin. Possessing this kind of scheming and methods meant that Tao Mu would be completely aware of his inaction on this matter.
Although there was nothing wrong with inaction, the key lay in Tao Mu’s maturity. Could he tolerate this after knowing his inaction?
Zhao Keping looked at others from his own perspective and felt that Tao Mu might not care about this. Because Zhao Keping maintained his belief that Tao Mu was the same kind of person as him. Self-seeking and ambitious, and most importantly, equally unscrupulous when achieving a goal. Compared to the methods, they were people who valued results more.
But judging from the information provided by Mu Huating, Tao Mu was actually so talented in stocks?
Zhao Keping was finally discouraged after he repeatedly confirmed this with Mu Huating. Because he knew very well that with Tao Mu’s profiteering personality, he really didn’t need to make false claims with him. So long as he could maintain his investment genius image as well as make some achievements in the stock market. Then with Tao Mu’s superb skills in making connections and gaining people’s hearts, he would soon be able to tie the interests of these people with his own interests. Then he would be able to take a step further with his personal connections. At that time he would never be at a disadvantage in the entertainment circle.
So Tao Mu really didn’t need to find a “partnership of the strong” with Zhao Keping. He alone could complete the transformation from a newcomer with no background to “I am the bankroller”.
And Zhao Keping, who claimed to be shrewd all his life, actually let such a genius slip out of his fingers. Whenever he thought of this, Zhao Keping would feel extremely upset. For the first time, he resented his own habit of manipulating other people.
Tao Mu naturally didn’t know Zhao Keping’s chagrin. When he returned to the set from the bathroom with two suddenly enlightened students, he found that the people who came to visit the set were all sitting behind Cheng Baodong on small stools, one by one they sat obediently in a row like kindergarten children waiting for their share of snacks——as for Cheng Baodong, he sat in the director’s chair in front of the monitor, watching the two acting masters Wang Boyuan and Guo Yaning pit their acting chops against each other.
Noting Tao Mu’s return, Cheng Baodong glanced at Tao Mu and unsurprisingly mocked: “Actually having kidney problems at such a young age and taking so long in the bathroom? Would you like me to introduce a few health supplements for you?”
Tao Mu laughed: “If director Cheng has any useful tonics, you can introduce them to me. It just so happens that our old man’s kidney is not very good so he always has to get up at night.”
Cheng Baodong questioned: “Aren’t you an orphan?” Where did the old man come from?
Then he immediately reacted. Furiously he exclaimed: “Who said I use this. My kidney is better than ever. Seven climaxes a night, got it!”
The loud roar was picked up directly by the live microphone and Wang Boyuan and Guo Yaning, who were speaking lines to each other, had to stop. In exasperation they looked in director Cheng’s direction.
Director Cheng’s face blushed and he said quickly, “Cut. Start over.”
He then turned his anger on Tao Mu: “Don’t talk to me all the time, there is a live microphone on, don’t you know.”
Tao Mu smiled and remained silent.
Director Cheng snorted and continued to stare at the hero and heroine.
Half an hour later, the speaking scene between the hero and heroine finally passed. Next, it was time for Tao Mu and the heroine’s body double to shoot the action part. Cheng Baodong didn’t say a word, turning his head to look at Tao Mu. Tao Mu walked into the set with a calm expression, and was immediately surrounded by the props group.
A large group of people surrounded Tao Mu and helped him dress in the wire suit. The stunt coordinator also took a storyboard to explain to Tao Mu about the scene. The young girl who served as a body double for Guo Yaning smiled and stood next to Tao Mu. Suddenly she thought of something and said with a smile, “Later just do it in a comfortable way, it doesn’t matter to me.”
Tao Mu had no idea how to respond to such misleading words. The prop masters who dressed Tao Mu in the wire suit laughed and joked: “The treatment of handsome guys is different.”
The young female body double blushed and said nothing. Wang Boyuan stood behind director Cheng looking at the monitor. He was thinking about Tao Mu’s huge profits in the stock market.
Cheng Baodong looked weirdly at his old partner who was rarely silent. He frowned and asked, “What are you thinking about, so deeply?”
“Nothing.” Wang Boyuan came back to himself and continued to stare at Tao Mu’s figure in the monitor in a daze.
Tao Mu was well-known among all the crews for his smooth and flowing martial arts movements that were handsome enough to break the sky. After the arrangement problem of the 100+ extras was solved, Tao Mu’s action scene was finished on the first take. His positioning and movements were so precise and beautiful that Cheng Baodong even got an illusion——that Tao Mu’s acting skills were seemingly even better than Wang Boyuan.
But how was this possible?
Wang Boyuan was an older actor who just won the Golden Crow Award, and Tao Mu was just a pure rookie without any professional training. No matter how talented he was, it should not reach such terrifying heights. Unless——
Cheng Baodong pondered for a long time, and couldn’t help but call Tao Mu over while the extras got NG-ed again, and revisited the old story: “I say, you really don’t know Yan Sheng?”
Tao Mu had no expression on his face: “I don’t know him.”
Shen Yu, who had been following Tao Mu’s movements, immediately answered: “Are you talking about the actor Yan Sheng? He’s my idol.”
“Yes, that’s him.” Cheng Baodong, who had always been a tyrant on the set, showed a rare kindly expression towards Shen Yu: “I think Tao Mu’s acting style is very similar to Yan Sheng.”
Cheng Baodong spoke while staring at Tao Mu out of the corner of his eyes. Despite knowing that Tao Mu hated other people mentioning Yan Sheng, he still asked questions again and again. On an index for being worthy of a beating, he rated ten stars. It was to get revenge on Tao Mu for framing him for “having a deficient kidney”.
Of course, apart from that, Cheng Baodong was also really curious.
Tao Mu frowned. He knew what Cheng Baodong was curious about, but he couldn’t say that the reason why his acting style was like Yan Sheng was because he had been suppressed by the f**ker for seven/eight years in his previous life. Whatever film he took the f**ker would also join in the same crew. And during filming, the f**ker would do nothing but suppress him with all his acting skills. And even had the nerve to say that he was doing it to get revenge for Shen Yu——
Tao Mu would always feel angry whenever he thought of these incidents. It must be said, that he could hone his acting skills to the point of perfection in his previous life was all with the “help” of that f**ker. If it wasn’t for Yan Sheng bullying him too much, Tao Mu wouldn’t have polished his acting skills like a madman——shutting himself up in a dark room, imitating Yan Sheng’s scenes in front of the mirror, and trying his best to defeat Yan Sheng in his own game. In the end, he did defeat Yan Sheng in the pursuit of the Golden Crow Award.
Unfortunately, that was also the last highlight in his acting career. Because Tao Mu cursed at Yan Sheng, calling him Shen Yu’s footlicker at the awards ceremony as well as cursed at Shen Yu, calling him a shameless cuckoo who occupied the nest. This directly angered the fans of both as well as Shen Yu’s admirers. After the award ceremony, Tao Mu was driven out of the entertainment circle by Shen Yu’s admirers. With Yan Sheng leading, they retaliated by buying online marketing accounts and major media, continuously spreading Tao Mu’s black history on the Internet. Tao Mu naturally wouldn’t just roll over and take it. The two sides fought viciously and other forces also took the opportunity to fish in troubled waters (TN: take advantage of a crisis for personal gain). The melee of these several parties stirred up the smog in the entertainment industry, and eventually led to the CFA (China Film Administration) to directly ban a group of artists and marketing accounts who had black history. Tao Mu was among them.
Tao Mu really didn’t want to bring up such a deep hatred. Of course there was also no way to explain it. But it just so happened that Cheng Baodong kept trying to get to the bottom of it several times. Faced with such an oversized delinquent kid who he couldn’t even beat or scold, even someone as calm as Tao Mu would become a little impatient.
“Director Cheng!” Tao Mu said suddenly, his expression solemn and serious, with some newcomers’ anxiety and shyness thrown in: “Having been in the crew these days, it is thanks to your careful guidance that I now have some simple understanding of filming. If you don’t mind, I want to tell you my thoughts.”
“Oh?” Cheng Baodong became interested, and looked at Tao Mu with a half-smile: “Then tell me.” He wanted to see what truths and insights Tao Mu, a high school student who had just graduated, could tell.
“Fine.” Tao Mu nodded. Combining his own reflections after watching “Faraway Jianghu” in his previous life, as well as professional film reviews written by major film weekly magazines and authoritative film critics, he talked about two-thirds of the film’s failure in directing——the remaining third being the parts that Cheng Baodong hadn’t started shooting yet. His attitude was tactful but words sharp, which was very in line with Tao Mu’s consistent style of being gentle and humble but striving for perfection.
Although he had always said he was optimistic about Tao Mu’s acting skills, Cheng Baodong actually didn’t take Tao Mu too seriously. But now he only felt his face heat up and heard a continuous “pa pa pa” sound of slaps to his face.
He looked at Tao Mu for a long while and finally said in suppressed anger: “Okay, I really didn’t see it, you are actually a wise person who doesn’t show off!”
Damn, acting like a little white rabbit all the time, but when angered, rather than biting he just “discuss” your various mistakes at work. The attitude was sincere and his critique reasonable, causing you to become angry but feel embarrassed to express your anger——as expressing it would have him labelled as unreasonable and deliberately confrontational.
You c an fi nd t he la te st cha pte rs at ( th e ir on tr ee bl oo ms. c o m )
Tao Mu smiled slightly, looking at director Cheng as he said in an even more sincere and humble tone: “It is director Cheng who taught me well.”
Cheng Baodong: “…..” I didn’t, I haven’t!
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