Seeing how unforgiving Yang Chen was to himself, Hui Lin immediately felt wronged and hurt. Oddly though, there was a hint of warmth blooming in her heart. Her tears started to gather in her eyes unknowingly.
Though his words were harsh, it showed that he really cared for her.
Yu Min couldn’t take this any longer. She tried to alleviate the situation. “Director Yang, please don’t stay angry at Miss Hui Lin. She was just doing what she thought was best for everyone. We have too many people in our crew and it’s difficult to please everyone. If we happen to offend most of them, not only will it affect our filming progress, it’ll put Miss Hui Lin’s reputation and our company at great risk in the future. She tried so hard to…”
Yang Chen scoffed. “That’s because you’re all too overcautious and indecisive. You allow them to walk all over you!”
Yu Min gulped, not daring to say another word to Yang Chen.
Yang Chen pondered for a bit, then asked, “Who’s playing the male lead? Where is he from?”
Yang Chen couldn’t care less about the other actors aside from Hui Lin, he didn’t even make an effort to know who they were.
Yu Min quickly responded, “His name is Zhang Kaiwei. He recently rose to fame two years after landing roles in period dramas and palace dramas. His initial fame was from his relationship with the second daughter of a famous Hong Kong real estate agent. Their relationship was short-lived but their split gave him greater popularity.”
His acting skills were evidently refined from his two-year experience. Kaiwei’s features and acting style were a good fit for the male lead of this film. However, the main reason they hired him was for his overwhelming fanbase in China. His bold relationship earlier had the general public hailing him as a daring and courageous man. He seemed extremely hardworking too. A lot of younger females are madly in love with him.
Director Yu Shuo was aiming to use his popularity, paired with Miss Hui Lin to form an eye-candy duo. This was the typical business tactic used in the filming industry to attract its targeted audience.
“What’s Director Yu Shuo’s take on the kiss scene?” Yang Chen questioned again.
Yu Min sighed again. “Director Yu Shuo had already discussed this with the producer team and everyone else on the direction team. Everyone wants Miss Hui Lin to do it personally, to maintain realism and professionalism. They find it difficult to explain to their audience if she was to be replaced by a substitute. Though Director Yu Shuo had initially agreed to use a substitute, the new decision now had him troubled.”
Yang Chen understood the situation. “I got it. Both of you, come with me. I’d like to see who this person so stuck up about professionalism is.”
His words seemed to hold an underlying meaning, sending chills down Yu Min’s spine.
Hui Lin looked a little concerned, but after getting reprimanded by Yang Chen, she could only silently follow suit.
The film set was located at the bottom of a cliff. Filming equipment was rather complete since Director Yang Shuo was internationally recognized. It would only make sense for his team to be top-notch too.
Currently, a flock of people gathered around Yang Shuo. There were people chattering all over the place.
He caught sight of Hui Lin and Yu Min who were approaching them with an unknown young male in tow. The chatter started to die down, rendering the set in silence.
It took a while for Yu Shuo to recognize Yang Chen. Seemingly embarrassed by his last recognition, Yang Shuo left his seat to offer Yang Chen a handshake with a sheepish smile. “Ah, Mister Yang, I didn’t know you’d be here. What’s the matter?”
Yang Chen accepted the gesture and they shook hands. He flashed him a faint smile. “How could I not come when Hui Lin is in trouble?”
Yu Shuo heaved a long sigh. “I understand that you may be furious but please, I urge you to stay calm. Please believe that all our decisions were made for the best of the film’s interest. The matter about her substitute is admittedly affected but all the details are still under discussion.”
“Director, who… “ asked one of the crew leaders curiously.
Yu Shuo hurriedly introduced Yang Chen. “Everyone, this is Director Yang from Yu Lei Entertainment.”
Acknowledgment could be seen from their faces but it wasn’t something out of the blue to them.
Those who were engaged in heated discussions around Yu Shuo were just the middle tiers of the film industry. They were all hired by the investors and had no part in decision-making. It was natural for them to not take Yang Chen seriously.
It didn’t help that CEO Lin Ruoxi was the one paying them instead. Yang Chen was just nothing but a ‘part-timer’.
One of the directors immediately called out to him. “Director Yang, you’re here just in time. I really hope that you can provide some advice for Miss Hui Lin. Although she’s great at singing and a little diva, her acting skills are just subpar for the industry. There’s a rule for every industry and one must follow it. Since she’s just a junior, she shouldn’t be so unwilling. In the name of art, kissing scenes are considered minor!”
“Yeah, this isn’t some shady business. If a substitute is needed just for a kissing scene, it will greatly impact the aesthetic of this film.”
Another director with an impressive beard mentioned. “It’s an honor to land a role in this film, it’ll surely bring you great things in life. I hope you’ll stop making this difficult for everyone else. Everyone can’t start working because of you.”
A sentence here, a sentence there, the camera crew surrounding them started to reveal their frustration and annoyance. Of course, all of them directed to Hui Lin.
Hui Lin averted her gaze to the ground, biting her lip hard. Not a word was heard from her.
Something cold gleamed in Yang Chen’s eye, he scoffed. “I don’t know what the hell is wrong with everyone here. Are your brains filled with nothing but shit and piss? If we’ve agreed on using a substitute, we should all stick to it. Pardon me but I’ve never heard of how there are rules for getting naked to get yourselves crowned the best actress of the century. Do you really think you’re teaching the newbie’s in prison a lesson? I think you’ve all watched too many Cantonese crime films growing up.”
“What the hell are you saying?! How extremely rude of you! How can you say that?” reprimanded the bearded director.
“Then why were you all spewing shit in the first place?” Yang Chen smirked.
Yu Shuo immediately panicked, desperate to end the dispute. “Director Yang, calm down. Hey, big man, why the hell are you getting so worked up for? We should all talk this out like proper adults!”
Undeniably, he was best known for his cinematography but conflict resolution was undoubtedly bad.
“Director, you’ve said enough! It’s obvious that he’s here to sabotage us! We must bring this to court and sue Yu Lei!”
“Yeah! We quit! Who the fuck is this foul-mouthed bastard to tell us what to do?!”
Chaos erupted. There were screaming and shouting, they all wanted to bring Yang Chen and Yu Lei International to court!
Yu Shuo’s face paled. How the hell were they going to finish filming at this rate?
At this very moment, from the dressing room on the other end of the set, out came a firm-bodied man clad in green robes. His features were prominent and his eyes glistened with the light. He was a very handsome man.
Beside the man was a few of his assistants. They all seemed muscular, perhaps they were his bodyguards.
“Everyone, quiet down. I’d like to say something.” His voice was magnetic, effectively attracting the attention of himself.
“Director Yang, he’s Zhang Kaiwei,” whispered Yu Min.
Yang Chen returned her a light nod. Indeed, the man looked very familiar. Yang Chen had probably seen him on air before. He was indeed very pleasing to look at.
Zhang Kaiwei politely nodded to Yang Chen and flashed him a smile. He then let his apologetic gaze fall on Hui Lin. “Miss Hui Lin, I’m sorry for all the trouble you were put through. However, I’m a perfectionist for my job and I really think that as an actor, you should be prepared to sacrifice in order to get a great performance.
Since my debut, as long as it’ll help the outcome, I’d put in my heart and soul to do everything.
I understand that as a female, your first kiss scene is always the toughest. But believe me, I’m a professional actor. All we need to do is to deliver a convincing scene with no ulterior motives.
Therefore, I beg you. For the sake of everyone here, please understand the situation and go with their decision. That way, we can resume work and ensure smooth progress, alright?”
Zhang Kaiwei’s speech was very genuine, garnering applause from the people around them, especially from the young female employees. They looked positively star-dazed.
“As expected from Zhang Kaiwei. This is what you call professionalism! This is how artists gain their respect!” Someone in the crowd commented.
“Oh my god! He is so handsome! That Hui Lin is nothing and she’s too busy thinking she’s all so important. Which actress hadn’t had a kissing scene before? She must think she’s some kind of pure virgin.”
“I used to like her singing before. I wasn’t expecting her to be so fake. It’s just a film and she’s already refusing to cooperate with us. Who the hell does she think she is?”
Some of the female employees started to run their tongue.
Hui Lin could feel her cheeks heat up. Everyone had glared daggers and now she was subjected to humiliation. There was nothing she could do to stand up for herself.
Zhang Kaiwei’s eyes gleamed with hidden delight. Staring at Hui Lin’s embarrassed face, a sense of greed surfaced in him, but it was quickly extinguished.