The casting is now finalised for The Rise of Phoenixes, the upcoming historical drama starring Chen Kun (Chongqing Hot Pot) as an ambitious prince who has his eyes set on the throne and Ni Ni (Suddenly Seventeen) as an intelligent young woman determined to restore her kingdom.
Yuan Hong costars as Jin Siyu, the third prince of a rival kingdom who takes Feng Zhiwei (Ni Ni) hostage yet falls in love with her instead. Bai Jingting (Yesterday Once More) stars as fan favourite Gu Nanyi, a skilled martial artist who serves as Feng Zhiwei’s bodyguard. Zhang Xiaochen plays Helian Zheng, the heir of a nomadic tribe who is willing to do anything for Feng Zhiwei, and Wang Ou (Full Love) plays General Huaqiong, a close friend of the female protagonist.
Apart from having a love-hate relationship with the female lead, Ning Yi also finds himself at odds with his father, the cold-hearted and paranoid emperor played by veteran actor Ni Dahong and his half-siblings the Princess Shaoning, the Crown prince (Hai Yitian) and second prince (Shi An).
Fortunately Ning Yi still has some allies in the head of the Qingming Academy played by Zhao Lixin (I Am Not Madame Bovary), the powerful chancellor played by Li Jianyi (In the Name of the People), and loyal bodyguard Ning Cheng (He Lei). Other familiar faces in the cast include Liu Mintao (Because of You) as Qiu Mingying, Feng Zhiwei’s foster mother and Hu Ke (variety show Super Mom 2) as Ning Yi’s consort.
Rise of Phoenixes is directed by Shen Yan and Liu Haibo (Chinese Style Relationship), and written by internet novel writers Lu Jing (original author), Zou Yue, Wang Pei and Zhao Bin. The 70 episode drama will start filming at the end of May.
There is a trend of chopping up super long drama into different seasons according to the story arc. Recent example I can think of is The Glory of Tang Dynasty. It may happen to this drama too. Yuan Hong hasn’t been in any dramas I like to watch lately. I really miss him.
I’d say it’s more to do with the episode count limit than the actual story. Due to the restriction on primetime historical dramas, it’s no surprise longer period dramas are being split and moved to a later time slot. The first “season” of Glory was already 60 episodes, and Beijing/Anhui TV needed to factor in their other primetime period dramas as well.
Whoa Chen Kun and Yuan Hong in a drama together. And there’s Bai Jing Ting as well.
What’s up with all the ancient dramas now being 60 – 80 episodes? It really discourages me from watching any of them.
I believe Zhang Shuping was also the costume designer for the Flowers of War.
I conquer the long episode count by ff-ing fillers. :p Though I’m looking forward to Tribes and empires, I’ve read that dir. Cao Dun’s shows often suffer from bad pacing.
Zhang Shuping’s republican designs are magical, but I can’t say the same for ancient dramas (Lost Love In Times – hairline, clothing pattern, and big bows).
I heard Storm of Prophecy is 80+ episodes. Regardless of how stunning your trailer looks, I just can’t imagine an 80+ episode series being good, especially one based on a book that has barely enough plot for a movie.
Wow I love the supporting cast as well.