26th Magnolia Awards

Congratulations to Tao Hong for winning Best Supporting Actress! I absolutely loved her in A Little Reunion.

Even though the Magnolia Awards tend to favor actors/directors/dramas in the Shanghai circle, it is the awards show I enjoy watching most because the winners are usually worthy recipients. By all accounts, The Thunder winning Best Drama and Best Screenwriter was probably the biggest surprise of the night. A Little Reunion, Joy of Life and The Longest Day in Chang’an also took home two awards each.

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Music Monday: 2019 drama soundtracks edition

I find all the character relationships in this drama to be very interesting, but my top three would have to be Crown Prince x Emperor, Crown Prince x Lu Wenxi and Lu Wenxi x Crown Princess.

A good original soundtrack / theme song always makes the drama-watching experience more enjoyable, so I’ve included the theme songs and instrumentals that have really impressed me this year. Which drama soundtracks made an impression on you this year?

Royal Nirvana: Instrumentals by Ah Kun

As long as Royal Nirvana doesn’t derail in the last half, then this series will be my favourite drama of the year.
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Tao Hong talks gender equality and the absence of meaty roles for mature actresses

Some of you may recognise talented actress Tao Hong as the dragon maiden from rom-com Sunny Piggy 春光灿烂猪八戒 (2000), which also propelled her husband and actor-director Xu Zheng to fame, or as Ji Xiaofu in Heaven Sword Dragon Sabre 2003. The actress recently returned to mainstream television as a controlling single mother in A Little Reunion, a critically and commercially successful slice-of-life drama that focuses on the stressful relationship between parents and teenagers on the cusp of high school graduation.

I’ve translated some excerpts from the actress’ recent interview, in which she shares her views on the entertainment industry and the situation faced by many older actresses in the industry.

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Over-protective parents grow up in upcoming family drama A Little Reunion

A Little Separation’s companion series, A Little Reunion focuses on three sets of families who all go to great lengths to ensure their children perform well in the university entrance exams, yet eventually realise that perfect scores are not the be-all and end-all.

Hai Qing is the strict mother who constantly compares her son (Zhou Qi) to her nephew (Liu Qi), while Huang Lei plays the father who is always responsible for defusing the situation.

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Air date update, July 2019

Nowadays dramas can be pulled 10 minutes before airing (ahem Novoland, although that’s probably more to do with the fact that it’s a period drama), so don’t get too excited about the shows with unconfirmed dates.

Shows that dropped with little notice: The Untamed, Love and Destiny, The Longest Day in Chang’an, Novoland: Eagle Flag

Cry Me A Sad River 流淌的美好时光 (悲伤逆流成河) – Jul 1

Starring: Zheng Shuang, Ma Tianyu
Details: 52 episodes, daily drama on Hunan TV
First loves break up and later reunite.

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