Promo Round-up: Princess Agents

Here are a collection of teasers, posters and stills for Princess Agents, the upcoming period romance drama starring Zhao Liying (Duckweed) as Chu Qiao, a slave girl with big aspirations.

Lin Gengxin stars as Yuwen Yue, the noble who forces Chu Qiao to undergo grueling training to become a spy. Shawn Dou plays the ambitious Yan Xun whose family is later massacred, and Li Qin rounds out the main quartet as Yuan Chun, the princess who harbours an unrequited love for Yan Xun. The extended cast members are featured in the group poster.

The 68 episode drama will begin airing tonight.

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First stills and a theme song for A Life Time Love

A Life Time Love 上古情歌 is loosely based on Tong Hua’s fantasy novel Once Promised, and stars Huang Xiaoming (Xuan Zang), Song Qian (Ice Fantasy), Sheng Yilun (Pretty Li Huizhen) and Zhang Li (Don’t Go Breaking My Heart). The ending theme song is sung by G.E.M.

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The Official Lineup Of The Voice Of China Season 4 Advisors

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Every season of ‘The Voice Of China’ consists of a Battle Round where the coaches invite another celebrity singer to be their advisor in the coaching rounds. With past invitees including Coco Lee, Wang Feng,  Leehom Wang, Jam Hsia, and Ella Chen, I’d have to say the biggest hype of advisors would happen to be the ones officially announced in last night’s episode of Season 4.

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Fan Bingbing is still China’s biggest star

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Fan Bingbing tops the Forbes China Celebrity List for the second year in a row, which means I get to reuse the same photo as last year.

Riding on her foray into Hollywood, actress Fan Bingbing has retained her top-ranking position on the Forbes China Celebrity List. The list, which ranks the top 100 Chinese celebrities based on media exposure and income, sees more Mainland stars this year than ever before, with 60 (or so) of the listees basing their careers in Mainland China. Aside from a handful of actors, however, the biggest A-listers were overwhelming from Hong Kong or Taiwan, with 14 of the top 20 hailing from either of the two islands.

According to Forbes, Fan raked in nearly $20 million last year, putting her on par with Jennifer Aniston and Kanye West. The celebrity with the deepest pockets, Jay Chou, banked $25 million, around the same as Ben Affleck or Buffy creator and Avengers director Joss Whedon.
Despite the success of China’s biggest stars (this year’s top 10 took home $20 million more than last year’s), the overall earnings of the Celebrity 100 decreased for a second consecutive year, accumulating $65 million less wealth than the year before. However, the celebrities still managed to bring home more than half a billion dollars between them.

Actors and actresses made up the bulk of the list, accounting for 72 of the celebrities. It is common for celebrities to both sing and act in the Chinese entertainment industry, however, and several were identified as both.
Of the 29 singers and musical groups on the list, only six were from Mainland China. Of those six, five were involved in reality television singing competitions, with the exception of Hong Kong-launched Faye Wong.
Mainland Pianists Lang Lang and Li Yundi maintained their presence on the list, with Li (ranked 56) overtaking Lang Lang (57) for the first time.

New entrants to the list include Tiny Times author Guo Jingming who debuted at 27, model Zhang Liang of Where Are We Going, Dad? fame, and I Am A Singer runner-up G.E.M and Taiwanese actor Kai Ko just sneaking onto the list at 91 and 97 respectively.

Meanwhile, notable dropouts include Taiwanese film director Ang Lee (previously ranked 29), Hong Kong funnyman Stephen Chow (24), Jet Li (41), Nobel laureate Mo Yan (16), Olympic gold medalist Sun Yang (31), former Super Junior member Han Geng (87), and Super Girls Chris Li (15) and Jane Zhang (45).

Rank Name   Income (million RMB) Income (million USD) Income rank
1 Fan Bingbing 范冰冰 122 19.5 4
2 Andy Lau 刘德华 89 14.2 5
3 Jay Chou 周杰伦 156.5 25.0 1
4 Huang Xiaoming 黄晓明 66.5 10.6 10
5 Zhang Ziyi 章子怡 56 9.0 14
6 Yang Mi 杨幂 52 8.3 18
7 Lin Chi-ling 林志玲 60 9.6 13
8 Li Na 李娜 141.5 22.6 2
9 Nicky Wu 吴奇隆 67 10.7 9
10 Jackie Chan 成龙 54 8.6 17

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I Am A Singer All-Stars: Season One vs Season Two

Finalists from both seasons of I Am A Singer return to the stage to duel it out, with a surprise twist.

Finalists from both seasons of I Am A Singer return to the stage to duel it out, with a surprise twist.

Have I just not been paying attention all this time, or are those sponsored beverages a lot more prominent in this episode? I don’t even know what they are. But I want to drink them.

This special episode pit the finalists of the first I Am A Singer 我是歌手 season against the recently concluded second season finalists. Season one finalist Huang Qishan, who appeared in last week’s finale, was absent in this episode and was instead replaced by Laure Shang. (Oh, I’m sure she had a very good reason for not being there.)
Just to note, some performances have not been uploaded onto HunanTV’s official YouTube channel. We’ll try and work our way around that.

The format differed slightly from previous I Am A Singer episodes. Instead of the usual free-for-all sing-off, season one and season two singers were paired together and went head-to-head in solo rounds. Some match ups were good. Some could have been better. The show started with a good one. Continue reading

Han Lei wins I Am A Singer 2014

The 46 year old singer beat out 11 other competitors throughout the season's run to claim the second I Am A Singer title.

The 46 year old singer beat out 11 other competitors throughout the season’s run to claim the second I Am A Singer title.

Remember when I said that the I Am A Singer 我是歌手 finale was going to be good? Well, I lied. It was pretty awful. In almost three and a half hours of airtime, we got about 24 minutes of good music. Proportionately, that’s like taking out all the main parts of a Pitbull song and just listening to the featured artist.

The first segment of the finale invited musical guests to duet with the seven finalists. Turns out, that wasn’t a great idea. And most of the finalists probably would have done better without their partners. Take a deep breath, here’s a rundown. Continue reading

I Am A Singer finale duets revealed (all the rumours were wrong)

Seven singers have been invited to perform with the seven I Am A Singer finalists. Some of them have appeared on the show before.

Seven singers have been invited to perform with the seven I Am A Singer finalists. Some of them have appeared on the show before.

Xie Ziming 谢子明, an entertainment magazine editor and Bibi Zhou’s I Am A Singer agent for this week, leaked the list of celebrity guests for the show’s final round on his Weibo account yesterday. Basically, none of the rumours we had heard were correct.

The "singing helpers" guest list for the finals is said to be: JJ Lin, Khalil Fong, Zhang Jiayi, Julian chen, Shin, Huang Qishan, Tan Weiwei. It seems like an odd little "intrusion." How they correspond to the seven singers is still unknown, but we do know that Friday night's show will be on the air for three hours, almost as long as the Spring Festival Gala. Who will @Bibi sing with? (I really have no idea.)

The “singing helpers” guest list for the finals is said to be: JJ Lin, Khalil Fong, Zhang Jiayi, Julian chen, Shin, Huang Qishan, Tan Weiwei. It seems like an odd little “intrusion.” How they correspond to the seven singers is still unknown, but we do know that Friday night’s show will be on the air for three hours, almost as long as the Spring Festival Gala.
Who will @Bibi sing with? (I really have no idea.)

To the disappointment of some fans, the revelation quashed earlier rumours of possible appearances by Jane Zhang and Wang Leehom. Later reports paired the guest singers with the I Am A Singer finalists. Continue reading

I Am A Singer semifinals: Shining favourites, MH370 conspiracies and angry Malaysians

Hunan TV's I Am A Singer topped the ratings last night, beating out rival singing contest, Sing My Song, and a really cool scientific game show.

Hunan TV’s I Am A Singer topped the ratings last night, beating out rival singing contest, Sing My Song, and a really cool scientific game show.

I Am A Singer 我是歌手 drew one step closer to crowning its second season champion as the hit show’s semifinal aired last night. And while the performance results mostly mirrored the trends of previous weeks, Malaysian fans quickly took to social media to voice their discontent over Shila Amzah’s anomalous sixth place showing. Some questioned whether her low score was the result of Chinese backlash over the Malaysian government’s handling of the Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 investigation. More on that later.

Chinese reality singing contests often follow unconventional formats compared to their international counterparts. So if you’re confused as to how someone actually wins this show, or why a previously eliminated contestant is back on stage, here’s a quick guide. But if you’ve been following the show and just want to watch the videos and read some rants and reviews, feel free to skip ahead! Continue reading

I am Singer 2 starts this Friday, releases posters

G.E.M.

How will the young G.E.M. fare against her elders?

With the new year comes new seasons of all our favorite shows, including musical competition “I am Singer.” The opening seven will feature the amazing young artists G.E.M. and Zhou Bichang, R&B artist Gary Cao, rocker Luo Qi, host Phil Chang, and classic Wei Wei and epic theme song’er Han Lei, although I wish he had sung this song instead. Included in the link are what is rumored to be their first song, the only one where they’re allowed to sing their own songs. Who are you looking forward to the most?
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