There was an old saying that ten years of work off stage, one minute on stage. It was used to describe the need for an actor to persist and hone their skills for a long time in order to win the audience’s standing ovation in the few minutes on stage.
When Tao Mu accepted his role in the film “Black and White”, although he didn’t take ten years to prepare, but a few months of targeted training coupled with ten years of martial arts skills foundation still counted, and at this moment, it was all brought into full play.
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Because this scene was practically a one-man show of Zhou Yuanting gunfighting at the dock, about forty seconds in length. Director Xu originally wanted to shoot according to the conventional method, that is, to use various close-up shots to highlight Zhou Yuanting’s combat effectiveness.
However, after Tao Mu showed amazing action talent, Director Xu’s mind changed. He wanted to change the previous shooting method and use a long lens with one shot to the end. To best let the audience feel that kind of hearty, refreshing, blood-pumping adrenaline at its peak.
Director Xu’s idea was very cool. However, the one-shot shooting method had very high requirements on Tao Mu. There was also scene scheduling and group performance coordination. All required great levels of cooperation.
It could take more than half an hour for just the rehearsal before any shooting even began. Fortunately, the summer daylight was long, and Tao Mu still had a few hours to shoot.
In this scene, Zhou Yuanting followed the mafia boss to prepare to smuggle to Southeast Asia. As a result, on the pier, the mafia boss received news that their group was surrounded by the police. The two sides had no choice but to fight at the pier. The various large containers on the dock were the best shelter.
The fight scene Tao Mu needed to complete in front of the camera mainly involved him dodging into the dock immediately upon discovering the police, and using various large containers as bunkers to snipe the police.
Director Xu directed the camera to face Tao Mu, and kept following Tao Mu’s various tactical movements, advancing the camera for close-ups from time to time, and then pulling the camera back to take a full shot of Tao Mu’s whole body.
In the screen, Tao Mu held a Glock 17, hid behind a container with a blank expression, and shot a policeman in the head.
The sound of gunfire attracted the attention of other police officers. They quickly followed the sound and shot in the direction of Zhou Yuanting. Zhou Yuanting flipped onto the container, still expressionless, his movements very standard and sleek like he was a parkour master. And then with a gun in each hand, he stood on the container and sniped several police officers from high up. After a few shots, this police team was wiped out.
Zhou Yuanting jumped off of the container, rolled over to relieve the pressure, raised his right hand while getting up on one knee, and quickly hit the two special-op police officers who came to help. He did not forget to pick up their rifle gear and spare magazines. Then he hid behind another container once again.
What followed was a series of textbook-level individual combat performances that stimulated the adrenaline rush of anyone watching. All tactical actions were very standard and very handsome, from single shots to shooting consecutively without pause to changing magazines with one hand, dodging with his gun, looking for shelter, all kinds of running, jumping and flipping movements were neat and decisive, but the most important thing was that no matter what Tao Mu did, his arm holding the gun was as steady as a rock, as if he couldn’t feel the strong recoil of the gun at all.
Seeing this, the instructor standing on the side couldn’t help shaking his head and sighing, thinking that even if Tao Mu was not an actor one day, if he changed career as a policeman, there was at least a half chance of joining the Flying Tigers.
Director Xu, who was sitting in front of the monitor, also felt a surge of adrenaline in his veins. His perfectionist streak striked again. Calling several NGs in a row, he planned to choose the best one to cut into the later stage of the film editing. He even prepared to invite the music production team to create a passionate soundtrack for this scene that echoed the atmosphere and style.
But these thoughts have nothing to do with Tao Mu. When Director Xu truly shouted “pass”, Tao Mu only felt that his shoulders were already too numb to feel.
In order to make the effect realistic, the “Black and White” crew used real guns when filming, but the bullets had no warheads, and only sparks and sounds were fired. Even though Tao Mu had been training at the police academy with a group of police officers for several months, he was not a real police officer after all. Without special training, such a tender flesh wouldn’t be able to stand it after so many shots!
“Ssss, it hurts, it hurts, it hurts.” Tao Mu frowned and cried out in pain, a bottle of rubbing alcohol was sent by a martial artist extra who got along well with Tao Mu, and while massaging it into his shoulders, Tao Mu laughed and teased himself: “This afternoon spent entirely shooting gun, I think I am almost empty by now.”
Everyone burst into laughter upon hearing this, and Director Xu also walked over with a pleased face. He wanted to pat Tao Mu on the shoulder to show encouragement, but when he looked at Tao Mu’s red and swollen arm, he didn’t dare to do it. All he could say was: “You did a great job. You can now take a few days off.”
The shootout at the dock was the final climax of the film, and it was also the most grand scene in the whole film. After all, the protagonists were Yan Sheng and Zhou Yanqing. Tao Mu didn’t have many scenes as a supporting role, so he could rest for a few days after filming his scenes. Then all he had to do was wait for the supplementary shots of Zhou Yuanting and the mafia boss leaving by boat. Then the whole crew would finally be able to finish up for good.
Although Yan Sheng and Zhou Yanqing’s acting skills were good, they were not trained in martial arts after all. In this film, there were many shooting scenes that required actors to personally shoot and hold guns. Director Xu was also one to strive for perfection, and plus the challenge of scheduling group performances. It was estimated that this scene would take at least two or three days to shoot.
In other words, Tao Mu could rest for two to three days and did not need to come to the crew.
This was definitely good news.
Tao Mu would be able to take his Yao Dad, Xiao Qi Dad, and Grandpa Song to tour Hong Kong.
——That’s right, after Liu Yao and the others flew to Hong Kong to celebrate Tao Mu’s birthday, they hadn’t gone back since.
Originally, Liu Yao was thinking about Night’s business and wanted to go back after Tao Mu’s birthday. But then Meng Qi inadvertently met a certain higher up of a Hong Kong TV station while eating out. When the two were chatting, they inadvertently mentioned the current situation of Hong Kong film and television dramas——basically, they were critically acclaimed but did not do so well in sales. The other mentioned that TV dramas filmed by TV stations could only be broadcast a few times before collecting dust at the bottom of the storage box, unlike video websites that could broadcast their videos repeatedly. In addition, many video websites in the mainland do not pay attention to copyright at all, and directly uploaded all kinds of pirated discs. There were many Hong Kong movies and TV series that were popular in the mainland, but Hong Kong received no income from it at all.
The person speaking did not think much deeper but the listener did. Tao Mu handed over the management of FlyNews.com and BulletScreen.com to Meng Qi. In order to live up to the trust of his little cub, Meng Qi had been thinking about how to develop these two websites. The most old-fashioned and easiest way he thought of was to buy the broadcasting rights of various classic TV series, so as to attract netizens to watch and cultivate netizens’ loyalty to the site. Then use the method of interstitial advertisements to make profits and maintain the normal operation of the website.
Before this, Tao Mu had already come forward and signed a round of agreements with mainland film and television companies and TV stations for the rights to broadcast their films and dramas. The classic works in the mainland have basically been swept away by BulletScreen.com. Now that he was in Hong Kong, Meng Qi planned to use this opportunity to get in touch with Hong Kong TV stations and several film and television companies. See if he could get the rights to some Hong Kong TV series and movies. At that time, Hong Kong could get some profits, and BulletScreen.com could also enrich their video source.
The two sides hit it off. In the next few days, Meng Qi stayed in Hong Kong and continued discussing the specific matters of cooperation. He also called over FlyNews.com’s investment promotion department and purchasing department staff.
After more than a week of negotiation, the two parties finally decided that BulletScreen.com would invest 30 million yuan to purchase the five-year broadcasting rights of all the TV series of Hong Kong TV, and invest another 50 million yuan to cooperate with several other film and television companies to purchase five years of film broadcasting rights to their films. However, most of the films and dramas were from before 2004.
When Tao Mu got this news, he was dumbfounded. On the one hand, he admired Meng Qi’s negotiating skills, actually able to keep the price so low. On the other hand, he had to thank this era that had not yet entered inflation. Money was still worth something. Of course, thanks to the economic crisis in 2008, the entire Hong Kong economy was affected.
The economic downturn, coupled with the mainland’s restrictions on Hong Kong film and television dramas, made life difficult for TV stations and film and television companies in Hong Kong. Everyone wanted to increase revenue and reduce expenditure, but among the Internet companies in the mainland——to be precise, video websites, who had demand and the strength to negotiate with Hong Kong TV and major film and television companies about cooperation in the broadcasting rights of film sources, only BulletScreen.com checked the boxes.
Either don’t agree to BulletScreen.com’s proposal, and endure the mainland pirates making a lot of money from pirated DVDs, while they couldn’t even make a penny. Or agree to the cooperation proposal of BulletScreen.com.
When the buyer had an absolute advantage and the right to speak, even if Hong Kong TV and the several film and television companies were not satisfied with this condition there was nothing to be done about it.
“It’s good enough to make money. That is to say, BulletScreen.com is quite kind, upholding copyrights, and encouraging copyrighted works. Many video sites and small social platforms simply upload pirated DVDs to gain popularity. We have to put up with those pirated websites trying to rob us of registered users. But if we were to sue them for this, it’s really not worth it.”
So even if they spend money, they have to endure others infringing on their rights. Another way to think about it was to spend 80 million to find a source of anger for yourself. But this was Tao Mu, their little brat. With another person, Liu Yao could only describe them as an idiot.
Brother Yao back then, was also a man who had secretly opened a video room to broaden his subordinates’ horizons.
Because of the relationship between the times and limited resources, Liu Yao and Meng Qi’s generation had watched all kinds of pirated discs and pirated books since childhood. They had no so-called copyright consciousness at all. Only Tao Mu, a reborn person, would insist on doing a good job in terms of copyright, otherwise Meng Qi would definitely have no qualms about playing pirated discs to attract traffic.
Tao Mu smiled and hugged his Xiao Qi Dad, while attentively massaging his Xiao Qi Dad’s shoulders, he praised his Xiao Qi Dad’s awareness of copyright works.
“Don’t try fooling me.” Meng Qi didn’t miss Tao Mu’s handicapped appearance as soon as he entered the door: “What’s wrong with you?
“Nothing, it’s because the recoil of the gun is too great. After shooting for an afternoon, my shoulders are swollen. I’ll just rest for two days.” Tao Mu said, and slowly moved his shoulders: “Look, there’s nothing wrong. “
Liu Yao snorted, got up, walked forward, and patted Tao Mu on the shoulder: “Come here, I’ll massage it for you.”
Tao Mu froze all over, and said in a particularly anxious way, “It’s not necessary, is it?”
“Stop wasting time.” Liu Yao slapped Tao Mu directly down on the sofa. It was soon followed up by a horrific screech like a pig being butchered.
However, his Ya Dad’s craftsmanship was indeed pretty good. After his muscles were pressed and rubbed a bit, Tao Mu was indeed much more relaxed. When he woke up the next morning, his shoulder pain was completely gone.
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 had three days to rest, and Meng Qi’s work was just finished as well. So the family of four enjoyed themselves happily. Accompanied by the driver, Li Xiaoheng, they spent three full days touring Hong Kong. The five grown men also went to Disney for a day. Under the various looks and staring by the tourists, they tried all the rides contentedly.
On the fourth day, Tao Mu returned to the crew again, and after making up the scene with Zhou Yanqing’s mafia boss character escaping, the film was officially finished.
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