2013 is going to be the year of the Tong Hua novel-to-drama adaptations, with three of her novels ranging from currently being filmed to being cast, all aiming for a 2013 broadcast. All three are being helmed by different production companies, so it’ll be a competition to see who did the best with the casting to the filming. Da Mo Yao has the lead out of the gate, being halfway into filming. Yun Zhong Ge will take up the rear, not starting its filming until the end of the year. In between will be Tong Hua’s modern novel Secrets Hidden in Time, which has just confirmed its four leads this week.
Wallace Chung (not White Tofu Wallace Huo) will be playing decisive and confident male lead Lu Li Cheng (Elliot), Janine Chang is lead actress Su Man (Freya), Jia Nai Liang is the other male lead Song Yi (Alex), and finally Han Xi Ting will be rounding out the cast as second female lead Xu Ling Shuang (goes by nickname Ma La Tang – spicy soup – in the novel). Filming will begin shortly, which means I need to be reading this novel now. Sigh, so much reading, not enough time.
I think this will finally placate Wallace’s rabid fans who have been stewing since the Bu Bu Jing Xin casting debacle of two years ago, when Ladyboss of Tangren dropped hints that Wallace would play 8th Prince only to have it end up being someone else. Now he finally gets to be a lead in a Tong Hua novel, and playing a very confident and assertive male character rather than a placid and gentle one. I like Janine a lot, and I’m pleased she gets to play a Tong Hua female lead. I’m not familiar with either of the other two actors so I’ll render my impression of them after I see them in action. Fans of Tong Li Ya are pretty miffed that she’s not the female lead, but I have to say I personally prefer Janine.
I have to say that rumors for all three of the currently scheduled Tong Hua drama adaptations will supposedly have a different ending than the novels. That is not surprising, since BBJX had a completely different drama ending than the novel ending. For Da Mo Yao, the drama ending supposedly needs to get changed to conform to strict Chinese political guidelines for not screwing with real historical figures. Tong Hua has said the drama ending for Yun Zhong Ge will be the original ending she had in mind when she wrote the novel, but ended up not using. And if Wallace is playing Lu Li Cheng in Secrets, I am placing my bet 100% right now the ending will be changed. There is no way he’s not going to end up with the girl.
Filming starts in April so will bring more news, plus my impressions of the story once I read it. I still have to write about Once Promised, which is Tong Hua’s take on epic love story Chinese mythology style.