First off, a huge thank you to Chewywon! I gave her a chunk of black and white text and she beautifies it with awesome gifs and screenshots. I could not ask for a better partner to work with!
Press conferences were held for My Sunshine on January 6 and 7 in Beijing and Shanghai, respectively. I’ll admit, I have an OTP bias, so the summary of these will focus mainly on Wallace and Tang Yan.
Press Conference in Beijing
The press conference brought in Wallace (He Yi Chen… if you don’t know this by now, I’m willing to bet you’re a first-timer to this blog), Tang Yan (Zhao Mo Sheng), Tan Kai (Ying Hui), Yang Le (Lu Yuan Feng), Mi Lu (Xiao Xiao), and Jian Ren Zi (He Yi Mei).
Unlike the second press conference in Shanghai, there is still no official release of the entire press conference in Beijing. The clip above hits most of the highlights. There is a fan-recorded version of the entire press conference, but image and audio is not the best. As a result, I won’t write a detailed description of what was said. As expected, they discussed the characters, the plot, especially the seven years of separation between Yi Chen and Mo Sheng, etc. I won’t include those since a lot of it was repeated in the Shanghai press conference, which has clear footage. Instead, I’ll just note some of the different, interesting tidbits.
- Wallace comments it was a rare opportunity for him to portray a character who was such a male idol/god. It felt good. [1:35] He got to wear nice clothes and work in a nice environment. All his other dramas felt like hell in comparison to My Sunshine‘s filming, which was heaven. (Haha… well, we all need some form of motivation, right?)
- [2:31] Tang Yan nods and says that Wallace does fit her mental image of He Yi Chen. [2:34] “Hi He Yi Chen,” she says to Wallace.
- Tang Yan is asked, since she is good friends with Yang Mi (who is also playing Zhao Mo Sheng in the movie adaptation of the same story), have they ever discussed the character? [3:00] Tang Yan answers that yes, they did. After Yang Mi accepted the role, she called Tang Yan and they talked in generalizations about the character. Tang Yan is looking forward to Yang Mi’s interpretation and at the same time, has utmost confidence in her own interpretation. Wallace is put on the spot and asked who, Tang Yan or Yang Mi, fulfills his image of Zhao Mo Sheng, to which [3:55] Wallace, after a pause, answers, “…… Really, do I need to say it? Do I really need to?” and holds out his arm to Tang Yan.
- Wallace and Tang Yan say they had lots of fun working with each other. [4:29] Wallace reveals that Tang Yan laughs at anything, which gave him a real sense of satisfaction. [4:44] “I’m so funny when I speak.”
- In regards to Yi Chen’s deep love and faithfulness, Wallace found it one of the more challenging parts of the character because Yi Chen’s love is not outwardly shown. Wallace is a very dynamic person in real life, so to prepare himself for the role, he would consciously make himself quiet down and sit still.
- Wallace and Tang Yan were asked to re-enact one of their favourite scenes. I think someone in the the audience shouted for a kiss scene, to which Wallace cries back, “There’s no lines in that!” In the end, they re-enacted one of the audience favourites, the breakfast scene at the table with Yi Chen reading the newspaper, but they did a role reversal, with Wallace playing Mo Sheng and Tang Yan acting as Yi Chen.
[4:46] Tang Yan: (clarifies, “I’m reading the newspaper.”)
Wallace (as Mo Sheng): You don’t have any… any of that passion that you should have.
Tang Yan (as Yi Chen): I’m already married. What’s there to get excited about?
Wallace: *dramatic girly sigh* They say… marriage is the shattering of all fantasies. Who would have thought… it’s only been a few days, and you… are already… so… dispassionate?
Tang Yan: You are not satisfied with my performance last night?
Wallace: *covers face in embarrassment*
Tang Yan: You need to get used to it as soon as you can.
- Tang Yan thanks Wallace for the kiss scene where he shoves her up against the wall… to Wallace’s shocked reaction. Actually, when the scene was filmed, Wallace had very carefully protected Tang Yan by putting his hand behind her and making sure her back and head would not slam into the wall. Tang Yan, so engrossed in her role at the time, had not even noticed this very thoughtful action and only when she saw the trailer did she realize what he had done. (Very thoughtful and gentlemanly, indeed. No wonder he has Peanut’s heart. Actually, the audience was asked, if you were pressed up against the wall like that by Wallace, what would your reaction be? Their answer: faint! Peanuts, himmy, Mel, Won, would you faint?)
- The two leads are asked to re-enact the kiss scene against the wall. Wallace protests, “That is supposed to be a very romantic scene, and you’ve turned it into a threat… with an audience looking in.” (Haha.) After some resisting, the romantic music strikes up to set the mood, and our two leads give us a demonstration of a “forced wall kiss.” [5:35] No eye contact, wag your head back and forth, and sway like you’re dancing. But Wallace then clarifies, you really shouldn’t start dancing in a moment of passion. (Thanks for the advice, Wallace!)
- Tan Kai confirms Tang Yan’s tendency to laugh at anything. He says, he didn’t dare make her laugh on set, otherwise she wouldn’t be able to stop.
- Yang Le is asked, in real life, what type of girl would he like. He replies, “I think I would actually love Big Brother Han Liang (Wallace) the most.”
- In regards to My Sunshine being adapted from such famous and well-loved novel, Tang Yan and Wallace were asked whether they were prepared to face the novel fanbase’s potential criticism for “ruining” the novel. Wallace replies, when filming, he did indeed feel the pressure. It seemed as if there were thousands of eyes watching them to make sure they were doing it right. (Is that why there weren’t many filming photos released?) In filming, he tried his best to align himself with the novel and hopes that will satisfy the hardcore novel fans. Tang Yan also answers and states that she feels the pressure, but she still wants to thank Gu Man for writing the story and the fans of the novel. She believes the novel fans have a very deep understanding of the story and characters, and their posts and discussion online provided valuable feedback to her for how the character should be portrayed.
Press Conference in Shanghai
The second press conference brought in the same cast as the first, minus Yi Mei’s actress. To be honest, I found this press conference a bit… uninteresting.
So, side note here, but was I the only one who noticed Wallace’s sweater right away? My first thoughts were, he dipped Feng Teng’s pink geometric sweater from Boss and Me into grape kool-aid.
What does your real life self share in common with the character you played?
[1:08] Wallace answered there really is not that much in common because the character he played is too ideal. Perhaps the only little thing they have in common is they are both “warm.” (See his little grin at 1:24 when he says that, almost like, “Yeah, that’s me. Trust me.”) But that is the only teeny thing they share. The host interjects that Wallace in everyone’s hearts is very ideal as well (and Wallace gives a modest, embarrassed little reaction at 1:33). Wallace answer to that is, “There’s the other side of me that you don’t know about.” He lists as examples, his 2B (funny/silly) side or his wild side. After all, normal people have many sides to them, and Wallace admits that he has a silly side… since, despite seeming very proper and serious onscreen, he considers himself a normal person.
You’ve previously acted the tall, rich, handsome roles and now you’re playing it again. How would you compare the previous roles to this one?
[2:40] Wallace draws comparisons between He Yi Chen and his character, Lu Li Cheng in Best Times. They are both successful, assertive, and faithful men, but there are differences. He Yi Chen is icy on the outside but warm on the inside, and especially to the woman he loves, Zhao Mo Sheng, he is warm and is able to find the fun and affection in the little things of life.
One scene he particularly remembers is Mo Sheng, hair still wet from just showering, lying on the bed while reading, and he tells her [4:00], “Why do you have such a bad habit?” He gets the hair dryer and blows her hair dry for her while she lays on his thigh. Wallace sighs over how heartwarming this scene is and said [4:17] that he will remember this trick, and if he has a chance, he’ll use it himself in real life. He seems very amused by the thought, doesn’t he? [4:22] LOL. But he claims he honestly hasn’t used it yet!
Tang Yan, what’s your impression of Wallace? (Wallace is known as “little sun.”)
[4:49] Wallace: “You feeling really hot?
Tang Yan: *giggles* Yes, quite hot.
The host comments, the “heat” was certainly felt in the trailer, where we all get to see Wallace forcefully kissing Tang Yan several times. Check out Wallace’s reaction and eyebrow waggle to that at 4:57. LOL.
Did you accept this role because you knew the male lead would be Wallace and there would be these sorts of romance scenes?
[5:38] Tang Yan giggles at this but says that the identity of the male lead had originally been kept a secret and she only found out later. When the host jokes that it was perfect then because she could imagine who she would pick for male lead and then proceeds to ask who she chose, Tang Yan very resolutely answers that she did no such thinking. Too busy! [6:00]
The questions moved over to Tan Kai, but I’m going to have to apologize. His microphone was extremely quiet, there was background noise, and coupled with my substandard Mandarin skills, I could not catch most of what he said. I’ll note what I think I heard, although I’m not standing on its accuracy.
You in real life share some commonalities with Ying Hui.
I think Tan Kai said something along the lines of, the character doesn’t really have anything to do with his former occupation (design background?). Ying Hui was a successful person in business but not in love (or did not really think much about love??). At least, on the outside, he appeared successful. He doesn’t think he/people have much in common with this character. Actually, most of the characters in the story are worth looking up to, are nice, wonderful. There is no evil character in this story or even the drama. What Ying Hui did was out of love, his love for Mo Sheng, but in the end, Mo Sheng’s love for Yi Chen was too deep-seated. The host asks, since the characters are so ideal, in life, can people be like that? Tan Kai replies, he has never seen a love like Mo Sheng and Yi Chen or someone as successful as Ying Hui in real life. But they are a reflection of the hope and desires we have for beauty and goodness.
Your thoughts on Lu Yuan Feng and Xiao Xiao
Nothing really interesting said here. Yang Le’s character, Lu Yuan Feng, does not exist in the novel and was added by Gu Man into the drama script and is Mo Sheng’s male confidante. Xiao Xiao is Mo Sheng’s female confidante.
The host turns to ask Wallace “Do you have a confidante?” to which Wallace replies, “Uh… I do not have a confidante.” [10:59] The host jokes, “You have love, that’s enough.”
Why did you (Yi Chen) not move on and choose any other woman and instead decided to wait for seven long years?
[12:57] Wallace answers, “I think, Gu Man was the one who thought that…” (LOL, good answer, Wallace!) True love like that perhaps is not easy at all to find in real life. However, he believes – they all believe – that there is such a thing in real life. This story is telling everyone, such love does exist.
So do you think you need to wait until “the right person” appears in your life, or can you compromise?
[13:40] Wallace answers that is difficult to say…. *much pondering* But after some thought, he replies that it is possible – that would be the most ideal scenario – but you must be certain and firmly set that that person is “the one,” the one you love, and the only one you will love.
So what if she can’t come back? It’s such a long time.
[14:07] Wallace: “Yeah… that’s a bit of a problem.” (LOL!) Wallace jokes, he would give himself 5 years, that would be his limit. Then he laughs at himself (14:18) and his answer. Actually, he says, he really needs to be in that situation to know. Maybe he could do it. The host continues to press him for an answer, if he could wait if he really met the right person. [14:41] Wallace says, “I really don’t know. I’m still so young…” and then turns jokingly to look at Tan Kai, commenting that Tan Kai has “many years” of rich experiences, in essence, joking that Tan Kai is much older (despite them being less than 3 years apart in age in real life… Gosh, they certainly don’t look that close in age. Tan Kai looks so grizzled and Wallace is still so baby-faced.)
If there really is a man who, because of love, is willing to wait for his soul mate for such a long time, what would you, from a woman’s perspective, think of this man?
[15:17] Wallace jumps in and answers the question meant for Tang Yan. “If I was Zhao Mo Sheng and I knew that someone had been waiting for me for seven years and did not accept anyone else’s love, I…” *rubs himself* and continues, “… I would throw myself at him.” And he demonstrates with arms spread wide how he would throw himself (15:30). Of course, he clarifies that he is just imagining if he was a girl…
[16:01] Tang Yan agrees that she would have the same reaction if she was Mo Sheng and knew the truth. That did not happen in the story because their separation was because of a misunderstanding, a misunderstanding that lasted for 7 years because she thought Yi Chen had forsaken her. And then lots of things happened, including her getting married. Despite this just being a ceremony and in name only, Mo Sheng feels guilt about this. But she, too, never accepted anyone else because her love is reserved only for Yi Chen.
Tang Yan, in your mind, what is the ideal love relationship?
[17:26] Tang Yan: He Yi Sheng Xiao Mo.
Host: But there’s regrets in the middle. After all, they wasted 7 years of each other’s time.
Tang Yan: Those 7 years, to Yi Chen and Mo Sheng, were actually not a waste. Perhaps, because of those 7 years, they realized how important the other person was and they cherished each other even more.
The host asks, then without those 7 years, would their relationship be a lot more ordinary, blending in with all the other love relationships out there, having not gone through tests and trials?
Tang Yan: Yes. (And Wallace nods in agreement) [18:09]
What in the world was that random zoom in on Wallace’s shoes for? [18:20]
They talk a bit about how the relationship began with “girl pursues boy” and how Mo Sheng was successful because she basically pestered Yi Chen and would not give up.
Wallace, what would you do in real life if a girl liked you and kept pestering and harassing you?
[19:05] Wallace: Uh… I’m still young… *looks to Tan Kai* (LOL)
[19:11] Tan Kai: If it was Tang Yan pestering me, I’d be ok…
And now, a random zoom in of Tang Yan’s shoes…?! [19:22]
What are some specific situations, scenes, etc that have left a particularly deep impression on you?
[19:42] Wallace answers along the lines that they filmed 7+ years worth of scenes and “went through” a lot – going to work, maturing of a relationship. It felt like, hey, how come I’ve grown up? Or like looking back on when you were young. The host asks if he felt any pressure because of this, but Wallace replied, no, all he needed to do was wear younger-looking clothes and have a younger-looking hairstyle (he means the mop hairstyle? LOL). Tang Yan comments that Wallace had no problems “getting into” the younger days, and [20:50] she particularly remembers the scene where she was sitting behind him on the bicycle and he was weaving around with it. Wallace was having a blast!
(Wallace and the host have a moment about riding their bicycles with a girl behind them and deliberately riding haphazardly to scare the girl. >_< They share a high-5 after discovering they have a kindred spirit in each other.)
Any other deep impression scenes, for example, a scene where he forcefully kissed you?
[23:00] (Check out Wallace’s funny little antics while the host is asking the question)
The host comments, Wallace is his male idol and Tang Yan is his female idol. He was especially exhilarated as he watched the kiss, so what was Tang Yan thinking when they filmed it? Tang Yan answers, she really wasn’t thinking about anything because she was too occupied with keeping up with Wallace’s pace. [23:23] *2 second pause*… and then Wallace goes, “Huh?”
[23:42] Wallace explains that, although Tang Yan appears to be “bullied” and letting Wallace do as he pleases during the kiss, in reality, she is secretly guiding the whole process, letting her “inner self” lead him.
Wallace and Tang Yan reveal each kiss scene only required one take. [24:17] The host jokingly asks Wallace if he thought the kiss scenes should have been re-filmed because they weren’t perfect. Wallace’s answer is along the lines of, “Oh yeah, I was thinking we should have did it again and again to get better angles,” while Tang Yan just giggles as the two men discuss how Wallace should have kissed her more.
Tang Yan, did you feel the electricity (during the kiss)?
[24:52] Wallace: Yeah, there was static electricity.
[24:55] Tang Yan: Yes! Static electricity! The type where your hair stands on end. Honestly, the hair stood straight up on end.
Wallace describes the kiss scene that was on the couch, which was a more aggressive kiss scene. (LOL at his wiggles to describe the “motion” on the couch.) When they were done and calm, they discovered, [25:25] “Hey, that person’s hair… isn’t just messy. It’s sticking straight up.” And Tang Yan was completely oblivious how mussed her hair had become. Wallace had wanted to laugh when he saw it, but he couldn’t.
Your thoughts on the line, “If that person once showed up in your world, everyone else would just be a compromise. I do not want to compromise.”
[26:25] Wallace replies, that this is He Yi Chen’s principle, whether it be in regards to love or life. This is also Gu Man’s grand viewpoint that she conveyed in Silent Separation: you only need to find that one person. Once you have found that person, everyone else doesn’t matter. A very idealized view.
[27:03] Tang Yan commented, when you first read that line, you think, how could she write such a line that, on the surface, seems very straightforward but in reality, is a reflection of everyone’s innermost desire? That lines leaves you stunned. She believes that every girl wishes for such a love.
What do you think the title, He Yi Sheng Xiao Mo means? (何以笙箫默. Literally, why is it the sheng and the xiao [instruments] are quiet?)
Wallace and Tang Yan had once had this same discussion, but Wallace tattles that Tang Yan brushed him off.
[27:56] Tang Yan tells everyone, Wallace once said it was simply Zhao Mo Sheng and He Yi Chen’s names put together with another character (“sheng”) thrown in the middle.
[28:13] Wallace mimics the way Tang Yan told him. “Nothing. No meaning. ‘He Yi Sheng Xiao Mo.’ Just sounds good.” So Wallace said, “Do you just not want to tell me….?”
The other three were asked what left deep impressions on them during the filming, him, but I honestly couldn’t really catch Tan Kai’s and Yang Le’s answer. … It seems the people filming the press conference weren’t interested in Tan Kai’s answer because they started talking in the background, too. Poor Tan Kai… Tan Kai said something along the lines of being a husband in name only to the goddess Tang Yan, Yang Le said something about great cast/script (I think), and Mi Lu said she and Yang Le provided the light-hearted relief in the drama so she had lots of fun. We will get to see Wallace snuggling a little baby in the drama! (Ah, be still my heart! Men with babies is my weakness!)
Say the famous line, “If that person once showed up in your world…” in your dialect.
Tang Yan says it in Shanghainese [36:30].
Wallace, of course, says it in Cantonese [36:55]. And then when he finishes, he turns to the host and asks in Cantonese, “Is that how you should say it?” (LOL. Wallace, um, asking the wrong person here.) Some Tieba fans went crazy, saying how lovely Wallace sounded in Cantonese. Hmm… perhaps as a Canto speaker myself, I couldn’t figure out what was lovely about it… he sounded pretty comical.
Tan Kai says the line in Qingdao dialect [38:24].
Yang Le protests that he’s from Beijing. (Standardized Mandarin is based on Beijing dialect, so he’s trying to say, there shouldn’t be any real difference.) He still ends up saying it with a little Beijing enunciation thrown in [39:30].
Mi Lu made me laugh out loud. She says she’s from Hebei but doesn’t really know her local dialect. The host declares he’s from Hebei, too, so he can give his opinion. Mi Lu speaks the line in a weird, nasal-sounding, twisted Mandarin [39:59], to which the host shouts, “Where in the world is that dialect from?” and demonstrates how it should be said in proper Hebei dialect. The two “Hebei versions” sound nothing alike! LOL.