Producer Yu Zheng makes his foray in adapating boylove novels with Winter Begonia 鬓边不是海棠红, a Peking opera romance period piece no doubt inspired by Goodbye, My Concubine. Although the series will be written by the author of the original novel, it’s uncertain how shippy the drama will actually be. The series stars Huang Xiaoming, Yin Zheng, Charmaine Sheh , Merxat, and Liu Min.
Set in the 1930’s, the series follows displaced Peking Opera performer Shang Xirui (Yin Zheng) as he moves to Beijing to remake his name. In his quest to make a name for himself and reinvent Peking Opera, he captures the eyes of Cheng Fengtai (Huang Xiaoming), a businessman who becomes enthralled by the world of opera. With the help of Cheng Fengtai, Shang Xirui is able to rebuild his old opera troupe and train a group of new talents. When the Japanese army takes of Beijing in 1937, the two must struggle between preserving the art that they love and the city that they love.
Yin Zheng is semi-obsessed with Leslie Cheung and has played his roles on multiple shows, so it’s no surprise he took on this role. I’m a little concerned he might just try to play Leslie Cheung playing Diyi rather than an original character, but hopefully the script will be good enough to fix that. Here’s a sample of one of his many tributes to Leslie Cheung: