TN: bonus chapter!💕
The scene of Shen Yu and Yan Sheng’s characters meeting for the first time would not exceed two minutes in the final film cut. If it was acted by the veteran actors, it was estimated that it would be done on the first try. At best, NG two or three times, and then have some close-up or make-up shots. Director Xu considered Shen Yu’s acting skills and specially reserved a morning. Making sure that Shen Yu’s acting skills would not be too tragic under the comparison of many bigwigs. However, even so, Xu Musen found that he still overestimated Shen Yu’s ability——
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 )
This scene took practically half a day to film, and it was not until 4 o’clock in the afternoon that it barely but finally met Director Xu’s requirements. By the time the props team and the lighting and cameras set up the set for the next scene, it was already getting dark.
Fortunately, Tao Mu and Yan Sheng’s scene against each other takes place in a bar, and the filming was not affected by day or night outside.
Tao Mu, who had been sitting behind Director Xu and watching the monitor while also observing Yan Sheng’s acting skills, got up and walked into the set. The makeup artist stepped forward to touch up Tao Mu and Yan Sheng. Yan Sheng didn’t dare to make too much movement, so he squinted at Tao Mu with his eyes, and said without moving his lips, “I heard them say, your acting is good.”
Tao Mu also replied expressionlessly: “Film king Yan’s acting skills are also very good.”
Yan Sheng laughed: “Rumors may be false, only sight is true. In the next scene, please let me see how good your acting skills are, Mr. Tao.”
“No problem.” After the makeup artist finished the makeup, the assistant came over with a mineral water bottle with a straw inserted. Tao Mu lowered his head and took a sip of water, stood up straight, and looked at Yan Sheng: “You will see it soon.”
Yan Sheng’s smile faded slightly, and the always gentle and calm aura suddenly became serious and somewhat aggressive.
The whole set went silent instantly. The actors who were still on the set huddled around in the corners that the cameras couldn’t scan, and the staff were all in their respective positions. The atmosphere suddenly became tense, as if the arrow was on the string, ready to let loose.
Even Director Xu, who was sitting in the director’s chair, couldn’t help straightening his back, leaning forward, and staring straight at the monitor.
The clapper loader shouted “action” in front of the camera while holding the clapperboard.
The heart pumping DJ dance music suddenly sounded, the extras stood on the dance floor shaking their heads and twisting their bodies, and the waitresses dressed as bunny girls walked around holding a tray. Yan Qi, the hero played by Yan Sheng, was half lying on top of the bar and drinking cup after cup, he was so drunk he could barely prop himself up.
One had to admit that Yan Sheng’s acting skills were indeed superb. He sat staggeringly on the bar chair, propped up the bar with his elbows, and his body even slipped down realistically from time to time. Whether it was the slightly dull and careless eyes, or the details of shaking the wine glass and pouring it into the mouth, people could clearly realize from the body language that this person was using alcohol to relieve their sorrows. You could even observe the bitterness and unwillingness in this person’s heart from the slight trembling of the corners of his mouth, and the complex emotions of restraint blending with the violence he wanted to vent.
Sitting in front of the monitor, Director Xu’s eyes lit up, and he waved his hand to signal the first camera to follow up for a close-up of his face and hands. Yan Sheng’s character had always been gentle and approachable. So when he usually acted, he also took care of his acting partner’s emotions. Unless it was a veteran actor with superb acting skills and rich experience like Zhou Yanqing, he would deliberately restrain himself when facing newcomers. It was rare to see such a shot that started out with full power and aggressive performance.
It was like the tranquility before the eruption of the volcano. Although it appeared calm and without waves on the surface, each shot was very explosive. It caught everyone’s attention without them being aware of it. Even if Yan Sheng didn’t say a word, in the whole scene, no one would be more attractive than him.
The second shot turned to the door of the club. Contrary to what everyone imagined, the camera did not directly hit Tao Mu’s face, but fixed on the feet which were clad in a pair of white sneakers.
It seemed that he wanted to reflect the character’s personality from his dressing style. After joining the mafia, Zhou Yuanting, played by Tao Mu, usually wore white and black. Either a white T-shirt, black jeans, or black jeans and white sneakers.
When Tao Mu wrote his character biography, he once analyzed or more accurately, set Zhou Yuanting’s character to be a bit roguish. He was handsome, and he knew how attractive he was to girls. So even after joining the mafia, Tao Mu’s dressing style was still meticulous and handsome.
But in this scene, Zhou Yuanting, who had always been well groomed, didn’t even notice the loose shoelaces. Walking into the bar step by step, the messy shoelaces seemed to reflect the owner’s mood.
But even so, if Tao Mu could only show this level. It was likely that his screen presence would be overwhelmed by Yan Sheng.
Zhou Yuanting walked into the club, went straight to the bar, and sat beside Yan Qi. The slender fingers tapped on the table and asked for a glass of whisky. But when he got it, he didn’t drink, instead he played with the crystal glass, the ice cubes in the glass knocking against each other. Zhou Yuanting put one hand on Yan Qi’s shoulder, still maintaining the attitude of two good brothers, and asked Yan Qi: “You and Yan Yu are actually brothers, how come you never mentioned it?”
Even if he was pained enough to drink himself drunk with alcohol, Yan Qi was still a trained Hong Kong police officer. His long undercover career kept him on the highest vigilance at all times, not to mention Yan Yu was the family he cared about the most.
Hearing this remark, Yan Qi’s eyes changed immediately. Under the close-up of the camera, Yan Sheng’s pupils suddenly dilated, and his eyes were strikingly bright. Even the muscles around the eye sockets were affected at that moment, showing an extremely shocked micro-expression. However, in just a moment, Yan Qi sobered up. He glanced at the bartender in the bar calmly before turning his head to look at Zhou Yuanting, still maintaining his drunk appearance: “What did you say!”
Zhou Yuanting leaned forward and approached Yan Qi. The camera froze on a shot from the side of the two of them, Yan Qi was half lying on the bar, and his whole person was in a state of drunkenness. The body was relaxed and the posture was lazy. However, under the bar, Yan Qi was stepping on the bar chair, and his right hand hanging by his side was clenched into a fist, though the upper half of his arm was still loose. It expressed a vigilant inner heart and a desire to cover up the past as well.
Zhou Yuanting, who was sitting next to him, kept his arm on Yan Qi’s shoulders in a friendly and close manner. However, Zhou Yuanting, who should have leaned over with this action, kept a fist distance between them. In the camera, it seemed that the two men with their upper bodies leaning close and their shoulders touching were good buddies, but beneath the shoulders they were unconsciously maintaining a wary distance. The small detail that slowly moved the two from mutually trusted partners to a detached opponent had a particularly visual effect.
Director Xu, who was sitting in front of the monitor, felt his heart jump and he motioned for the camera to give Zhou Yuanting a close-up of his face.
The second shot moved along Zhou Yuanting’s arm all the way, from the forearm to the shoulder, to the Adam’s apple and then to the chin, and finally showed Zhou Yuanting’s eyes.
The corners of Zhou Yuanting’s mouth were still in their customary arc. Zhou Yuanting liked to smile very much. When he smiled, it was abady boy smile, the corners of his mouth curved up fiercely, the muscles around his eyes contracting together, which made his smile look particularly full. Coupled with the rich collagen present in young people, it looked particularly youthful and handsome, with the peculiar energy and spirit of a young man.
However, now, Zhou Yuanting’s smile was only retained on the lower half of his face, his cheeks were pushed upwards symbolically, but the muscles around the eyes had not changed, and those dark eyes were deep and emotionless. Suddenly looking at it from the camera, it even seemed quite a bit unsettling.
From the whole script, this scene was the turning point of Zhou Yuanting turning to the dark. It was in this scene that Zhou Yuanting learned that the first undercover cop candidate selected by the police was Yan Yu, but because of Yan Qi’s strong opposition, it eventually became him.
The person who should have successfully graduated from the police academy and become a glorious policeman had now become a street gangster who was reviled by everyone. All his family and friends distanced themselves from him overnight. Zhou Yuanting’s father was so angry that he had a heart attack and refused to let him enter the house. During his training at school, those peers whose training performance was far inferior to that of his own were able to proudly wear police uniforms on duty. While he could only wander the streets and alleys with a bunch of gangsters and hooligans every day. From time to time, he would be detained by these same fellow police officers, squatting in the police station in handcuffs, and being lectured the same way they would reprimand a criminal.
All this was brought to him by the man in front of him. It was ridiculous that Zhou Yuanting actually sincerely regarded Yan Qi as a partner, and he fantasized about cooperating with him to complete the task and returning gloriously to the police station with a fresh unblemished file.
In the script, in order to pave the way for Zhou Yuanting’s blackening transformation. In fact, there was a scene before this. Zhou Yuanting accidentally got acquainted with a policeman who used to be an undercover cop. The man had been undercover in the mafia for eight years, and finally successfully completed the task and returned to the police station. However, what greeted him was not flowers, applause, and a promotion, but the bad habits left on him by years of mafia life——making him out of tune with other colleagues in the police department.
“They always say that an official is an official and a thief is a thief. It is only natural for officers and soldiers to catch thieves. But what is an official and what is a thief?”
“You work in a police station and wear a police uniform to work every day. That’s the official. If you live in a den of thieves. You are a thief.”
“I’ve been undercover for eight years, in order to deceive the boss’ trust. I’ve done all kinds of bad things. Cut people, sold drugs, visit prostitutes, when everyone is doing this how can you not follow along? But could the police do these things?”
“I went undercover for eight years and returned to the police station, and all the police officers during the same period were promoted to positions like senior inspector with connections all over Hong Kong. Only I didn’t know anyone except my superior. When I go out to deal with cases, they still doubt whether I would give a heads up to the gangsters. The brothers who blocked knives for me in the past would be considered comrades in arms on the battlefield. But I have to send them to the prison with my own hands…..”
“Being an undercover cop have no human rights. One day a thief and a lifetime as a thief. The official refuses to believe you, and the thief wanted nothing more than to kill you to take revenge. You are no longer human on both sides. You want to struggle free of the shadows of these years, how can it be so easy.”
Later, the undercover cop was hacked to death by a former brother after he got out of prison.
Before that scene, Zhou Yuanting and Du Ze took their brothers to fight with other gangs, and at the last moment they were caught by Yan Yu and the police. It was crushingly disappointing to be handcuffed and squatting in the police station while his statement was recorded.
It was in this situation that Zhou Yuanting learned about the sibling relationship between Yan Qi and Yan Yu, and learned that Yan Qi had caused others to be an undercover cop in order to protect his younger brother.
All the previous foreshadowing and emotional accumulation exploded together in this scene. However, Tao Mu did not film the previous scenes. No emotional buildup meant he had to act out an emotional explosion on the spot. Director Xu was still worried that Tao Mu’s performance would be slightly inferior. After all, Yan Sheng performed very well in this scene.
But he didn’t expect that with Yan Sheng’s wonderful performance, Tao Mu’s acting was even more amazing.
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 )
“I said I didn’t know that you and Yan Yu are brothers.” Zhou Yuanting moved close to Yan Qi’s ear, his arms changing from hooking his shoulders to his neck: “We two are partners. Zhou Sir told me to cooperate with you well in our work. And told me that we should trust each other. But it turns out, brother Yan, you refused to tell me even such an important thing.”
Zhou Yuanting chuckled lightly, but there was no smile in his eyes: “Brother Yan, have you never trusted me from beginning to end?”
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