“Brother Li!” Ji Li walked quickly to Qin Li’s side, his eyes filled with unstoppable surprise and joy. “I didn’t expect to see you again here.”
Unlike the deliberately blackened beggar makeup in the movie, Ji Li’s current costume was very eye-catching.
Qin Li was infected by his smile and he couldn’t help his lips curving up. “Yes, it has been a while.”
Yao Chuan and Fang Zhixing looked at each other in a puzzled manner. “Do the two of you know each other?”
“Ji Li played my younger brother in Country and the World. We worked together in several rivalry scenes.” Qin Li paused slightly before adding, “Director Zheng likes him very much.”
Yao Chuan heard this and immediately reacted. “Is he the newcomer actor that Old Zheng praised so much in his Moments?”
The relationships in the director’s circle were interconnected. Yao Chuan and Zheng Anxing also knew each other privately.
Qin Li nodded affirmatively.
It was the first time Ji Li heard about this and his eyes brightened. “Brother Li, Director Zheng praised me in his Moments? When did this happen?”
“On the day you finished shooting, Old Zheng made a rare post in his Moments and eloquently praised you.” Qi An answered and asked the staff to bring over an extra chair.
After watching the scene just now, Fang Zhixing had already equated Ji Li with Xie Yan in his heart. “Your name is Ji Li?”
“Yes.” Ji Li politely introduced himself. “Hello Director Yao, Teacher Fang. My name is Ji Li.”
“Sit down, you handled the scene just now very well,” Yao Chuan said.
“Thank you, Director.” Ji Li calmly sat down beside Qin Li and glanced at the monitor. “Just now, the wind blew up the veil of my hat. Do you need me to shoot it again?”
“No need. I’ve seen it and it can be used.” Yao Chuan had been directing for many years and knew what the audience wanted to see.
The close-up only had the side profile. It wasn’t to the point of the face being seen but the type of vague beauty revealed by Ji Li poked at people’s hearts.
“Ji Li, I remember that you are signed with Dream Media.” Qi An took advantage of this gap to ask about his doubts. “How did you run to be a stand-in? Did the company’s agent force you to come?”
Letting a promising, talented newcomer run to be a stand-in? This company was too unreliable.
Qin Li looked at Ji Li. He also cared about this matter.
Ji Li feared they would misunderstand and explained, “I picked a movie role but the crew isn’t ready yet. There is probably a gap of two months.”
“I heard that the production team of Schemes of the Great Zong Dynasty Youth is very good so I took this opportunity to join the crew. I want to learn more and make some contacts along the way.”
Ji Li’s answer was sincere and true. What newcomer didn’t want to contact the crew of a big production? Who didn’t want to seize every opportunity to rise?
Yao Chuan smiled. He obviously had a good impression of Ji Li.
Qin Li’s lips curved up and he asked for the first time, “Previously in the movie crew, why didn’t you ask for the WeChat of me and Director Zheng? Are we not good contacts?”
“How can that be?” Ji Li retorted and smiled shyly. “The time we met was too short. I was afraid you wouldn’t give it to me. That’s why I only added the WeChat of a few staff members. I follow the news of the crew through them every day.”
Wasn’t it wishful thinking for a newcomer to add the WeChat of a movie emperor? Ji Li was still very self-aware. Now that the other person took the initiative to mention it, perhaps he could try asking?
“Brother Li, can I add your WeChat? If there are any suitable roles to audition for in the future, can you push them to me?” Ji Li watched Qin Li and added, “I’m a newcomer who just debuted and my price is very cheap.”
The people around him heard this and laughed softly.
Ji Li approached slightly. His facial features were too eye-catching and his eyes looked sincerely at Qin Li. Even his trembling eyelashes seemed to be giving an appeal.
Qin Li’s eyes gradually darkened. He was almost trapped in the attraction of this close distance and he had to force himself to straighten. “Of course.”
Qi An sensed his friend’s abnormality and he slightly raised an eyebrow.
As for Yao Chuan and Fang Zhixing, they were just watching the excitement from the side. They both knew that the newcomer unanimously acknowledged by Qin Li and Zheng Anxing must be outstanding.
It was a pity that the candidate for Xie Yan had already been set as He Ling. Otherwise, they would’ve definitely brought Ji Li into the crew.
The staff members who were onlookers were stunned. Ji Li had worked with Brother Li? He also added Brother Li’s private WeChat in front of them?
Someone whispered, “Ji Li is actually a newcomer signed to Dream Media? No wonder why he looks so good.”
“What is the use of looking good? You need capital to mix in with this circle.” Another person quietly said. “You say, they are in the same company but He Ling can be the villain while Ji Li is only his stand-in.”
“What’s wrong with a stand-in? In the same scene, Ji Li’s lethality was a hundred times stronger than He Ling.” The stylist who came to the shooting scene interjected. “Based on Ji Li’s face, it is only a matter of time until he becomes popular.”
Just as the crowd was talking, the production assistant ran to Yao Chuan for instructions. “Director Yao, there was a problem with the shooting of Group B. Based on a conservative estimate, it will take another two hours to transfer over.”
Due to the drama demands, today’s filming was divided into two groups. Group A was the first scene between Xu Miaomiao and He Ling while Group B was the daily scenes of the male protagonist and the others.
Yao Chuan heard this and frowned again. “This is much longer than the expected time.”
“Do you want to move up tomorrow’s martial arts scene first?” The production assistant proposed as he looked at Ji Li. “He Ling said from the beginning that his martial arts scenes should be completed by the stand-in.”
Ji Li heard this and took the initiative to say, “Director Yao, I have no problem. I can meet the needs of filming at any time.”
In any case, he had already put on the headgear and the costume. If he could shoot one more then he would naturally shoot it.
Yao Chuan considered it for a moment. “Is the martial arts director and group actors here?”
The production assistant answered, “They are all present. The martial arts director said it isn’t too late to teach the martial arts on the spot.”
“Okay, take Ji Li to prepare quickly.” Yao Chuan looked at the time and added, “Once Group B finishes filming, don’t have them come over. We will catch up with the rest tomorrow.”
The set matters needed to be carried out.
Ji Li got up in a hurry, politely said goodbye to everyone and immediately followed the production assistant.
Qin Li waited for him to leave before asking with a straight face, “Which actor did Ji Li replace in the scene? What about the actor himself?”
Originally, he had nothing to do with the crew. However, the thought of Ji Li being forced to be a stand-in made him feel uncomfortable.
Fang Zhixing saw his concern and explained the matter to him. “He is also an artist of Dream Media and is called He Ling. According to Xingyuan, he took the initiative to find the crew…”
He Ling was more popular than ordinary newcomers and his appearance was qualified. Most importantly, he brought 30 million into the crew out of his own pocket.
There were a lot of martial arts elements in their drama and the content of the court wasn’t a hot palace fight. In recent years, they had filmed works with similar themes. There were still walls in the novel and movie and television business. No matter how popular the original novel was, they could only get limited investment.
In order to make a fine product, they could only spend funds on a knife’s edge.
Producer Mo Xingyuan was essentially a businessman. He thought that as long as He Ling could do well in acting, the deal wasn’t such a loss for the crew. He persuaded Yao Chuan and the others to accept it.
As a result, unexpectedly, He Ling’s acting skills weren’t seen on the first day of entering the crew. Instead, everyone clearly saw his temper.
Qin Li picked up the script to one side, flipped through it and spoke in a seemingly casual manner, “Have you never thought about replacing him?”
Qi An was slightly stunned and stopped it in a low voice, “Qin Li, you have never seen He Ling.”
It must be known that according to Qin Li’s past temperament, he would never interfere in the affairs of other crews that had nothing to do with him. Yet now he was suggesting that Yao Chuan replace He Ling.
His friend had never met He Ling. If this matter got out, it could be seen how outsiders would misinterpret it.
Qin Li didn’t change his expression. “If you want to make a good drama, you can’t be careless in any role. Obviously, there is a more suitable and cooperative candidate. Why do you have to choose someone who acts so arrogantly and is unprofessional?”
Yao Chuan and Fang Zhixing exchanged looks. The latter lowered his voice and asked, “Do you mean to replace He Ling with Ji Li?”
Qin Li held the script tightly and didn’t say it definitely. “There are so many good actors. The casting needs are still up to you.”
“It is up to Old Yu and Xingyuan to decide this matter.” Fang Zhixing looked at the director Yao Chuan.
To be honest, he had a good impression of Ji Li and he also looked forward to Ji Li’s interpretation of King Jin Xie Yan. However, as a screenwriter, he had no substantial decision making power over the casting.
Yao Chuan lit a cigarette and shook his head in the smoke. “I’m afraid it isn’t that easy.”
He Ling had used capital to join the crew so it was clearly written in the actor’s contract that he couldn’t be replaced unless there was a force majeure factor. If the crew broke the contract, they would pay double the penalty.
If they changed people forcibly, the disturbance probably wouldn’t be small.
“This matter has to be discussed with Xingyuan. During the filming, I don’t want to raise too many irrelevant issues.” Yao Chuan had a tough personality but his mind was still delicate. “It is fine if it is changed to someone else but if changed to Ji Li, I’m afraid the child will be targeted by He Ling in the company.”
At the very least, it took time for actors to get used to the role. He couldn’t beat He Ling to death. As a director, he was obliged to help actors figure out and shape the character.
When it came to this, Qin Li nodded. “If you have any need for funds in the future, you can find me.”
“Yes, our IP investment department of Lixing Culture is worried that there is no place to spend money.” Qi An joked.
He and Qin Li had co-founded a movie and television company and there were countless old and powerful veterans who signed cooperation contracts. In addition, there were regular acquisitions of movie or television resources. At present, the development momentum was very fierce.
“Okay, once I finish filming this TV drama, I plan to make a movie called Special Operations. The first version of the script has been written. I will show it to you at that time.”
Qin Li put down the script in his hand. “Okay.”
The moment he finished speaking, the production assistant walked over with the martial arts instructor and said excitedly, “Director, we are almost ready. The assistant director has arranged for the actors to do a trial play and you can start shooting later.”
Yao Chuan heard this and his eyes showed surprise. “It is almost ready?”
“It has been less than half an hour.” Qin Li said while glancing at the time.
It didn’t matter how fast an actor learned. According to reason, it would take at least an hour to learn a set of martial arts moves.
The martial arts instructor hired by the crew was Wang Ruixiang, a famous star in the early years. Later, the decline of kung fu movies meant he transformed into a martial arts instructor.
His generation had real kung fu. Even if he went behind the scenes, he wouldn’t relax his guidance requirements for acting.
“Old Xiang, you can’t go easy. Our drama can’t be sloppy.” Yao Chuan reminded him.
“Who is being sloppy?” Wang Ruixiang was notoriously serious but now there was an unprecedented smile on his always stern face. “I want to ask you, where did you find such a good seedling?”
Qin Li heard this obvious praise and his eyes slightly brightened. He looked at Ji Li being tied to the wire in the distance while he heard Wang Ruixiang say, “I’ll set up the suspense first. You can see for yourself.”
I am once again holding my annual translating anniversary event for all the novels I have translated, whether on CG or on this website. There are two events, a fanart event and a novel reviews event where cash prizes and other prizes will be given. If you aren’t an artist then feel free to check out the novel reviews event where anyone can join as long as you submit a review. You can check out all the details of the event below.
P.S. Members of my discord server linked on the sidebar will get early sneak peeks of the fanart entries before the voting.