Chapter 27: Hard Work in Filming
Translator: Exodus Tales Editor: Exodus Tales
Yun Xiangxiang did not know how others evaluated the makeup photo Han Jing posted. She only wanted to concentrate on the filming.
As a matter of fact, the filming part was much harder and agonizing than she expected it to be. She only found out that the previous act of starving to slim down was just an insignificant starting point.
In July, Sichuan Province was hot beyond imagination. It was not an exaggeration when the script specified how the ground was so hot that it could fry an egg.
Xia Hong didn’t have any cooling shirts. She only had thin patched long-sleeved clothes, and she wore a pair of straw sandals. Within two days, Yun Xiangxiang’s feet were all covered in blisters that she had to burst every night. In order to be more realistic, her delicate feet were forcefully rubbed until they were bruised badly, and even a tiny bit of delicate skin could not be seen anymore.
Even when she had a layer of calluses under her feet, walking on such surface made her feel like she was about to burst. However, she had to overcome this difficulty, as Xia Hong had already walked until she felt numb, and no pain should be shown on the face.
One time, Yun Xiangxiang accidentally stepped on a splinter, which penetrated Yun Xiangxiang’s straw sandals and went into her foot. When that happened, Han Jing went into a frenzied state and did not stop the acting, but continued to film the moment that seemed most authentic. She filmed how Yun Xiangxiang struggled to venture into the forest and found the herb used to stop blood. She also filmed the process of her stuffing the herb into her mouth so that she could chew it before applying it to her foot, without caring about the dirt on it.
Yun Xiangxiang didn’t even need to act the feeling of being alone, the despair, nor the desperation in order to survive. She just presented it very naturally. After that, she used half a month in order to recover, and filmed some scenes that were not supposed to be in the script.
Han Jing made the script much more entertaining in the later period. Although the protagonist was still only Yun Xiangxiang, many details had highlighted Yun Xiangxiang’s difficulties to go to school.
The difficult environment was not the only problem. The fact that her uncle funded her to go to school caused her aunt to be unhappy. This caused them to quarrel almost everyday. Her aunt even went ahead to vent her anger in front of her.
Xia Hong saw this clearly, and her inner heart struggled before. However, she succumbed to how great a university was in her teacher’s description.
She became thick-skinned. In order to make her aunt less dissatisfied, she spent almost the rest of her time helping with the farm work of her uncle’s family. When the weak mother was doing her own farm work, she would reach out and help her.
However, even with this, she still could not get rid of the hatred felt by her aunt towards her. It became more apparent as Xia Hong made her child look like nothing compared to her. This caused her aunt to treat her as a nuisance.
Although Xia Hong was thin, it was undeniable that she was the most beautiful girl in the village, and was also the only high school student. Her aunt and grandmother discussed secretly, and decided to give Xia Hong away through marriage.
The marriage partner was a gambler. His family only consisted of him. The village he was from was also richer than the village that they were living in currently. Besides, the gambler’s luck seemed to be good recently, and won a fortune. He was planning on marrying a beautiful wife. After he heard about Xia Hong’s characteristics, he immediately agreed, and promised to give them five thousand yuan in cash.
She got wind of the incident from her cousin that was bullying her. After she heard the news, she frantically ran back home.
It was a harsh winter. The camera angle was placed high up in the sky. As she was running on the unstable road filled with snow, she was small like an ant. Her whole body was emitting the sadness of being unable to control her own fate, which was even more tragic than the horrible environment she was in.
When this film was shot, an accident almost happened. When Yun Xiangxiang climbed up the ladder from below, because of the sudden surge of cold wind, and because her hands and feet were cold and stiff, she did not grasp the ladder firmly enough, and fell.
Fortunately, she had safety measures prepared beforehand. She quickly caught the rope ladder, while her eye was almost pierced by a sharp rock. If it weren’t for her quick reflexes, she would have lost an eye. Her forehead was also scratched during the process.
However, Yun Xiangxiang had already reached a mutual agreement with Han Jing in the past few months. She did not feel that she was going to give up. She clung on to the rope ladder and climbed up while clenching her teeth. Then she lay on the snow of the cliff, bit the back of her hand and started crying in desperation.
She didn’t cry for long before she stood up later and ran forward. The camera which was on the helicopter followed her.
As she was running back home, before she even had the time to beg her uncle, she had received news that her mother was going to pass away soon.
It turned out that her mother also heard the private discussion between her aunt and grandmother. Her mother, who had been obedient for her whole life and was forced to submit to everything, stood up for her for the first time. However, she was slapped by her grandmother and fell ove, hurting her head as she fell on the floor.
Her mother was being strong-willed for once. She stared at Xia Hong’s aunt blankly. She told her aunt that accidentally killing someone would also land her in jail. If both Xia Hong’s aunt and grandmother did not let Xia Hong off the bat, she would tell her uncle that it was his wife who pushed her. There were only three people at the scene. If she said that, the selfish grandmother would definitely agree with her.
She managed to scare her aunt off, and promised that she would never stop Xia Hong from studying anymore.
Xia Hong’s mother said that she accidentally hurt herself, and was waiting for her daughter to come back. However, Xia Hong’s aunt did not send people to call for Xia Hong, as she was afraid that her mother would tell her about what happened, and in turn let Xia Hong threaten her.
When Xia Hong’s aunt saw Xia Hong stumbling while running, she was shocked by her as her face was covered with blood. She tried to stop her from entering the house, but was forced to do so because her husband was questioning her. When she heard the crying sound from the house, and when Xia Hong did not exit the door, her aunt felt relieved.
After her mother was buried, Xia Hong had a dream. She dreamt that she was admitted to the university. She dreamt of her mother’s rough hand touching her face with her mother’s face full of joy. She had lost her mother; she was treated badly by her aunt and grandmother who saw her displeased to their eyes; her father had always hated her, and always complained about her not being a son.
Xia Hong’s life became more difficult. However, she also became more and more determined about her dream to go to college.
After this, she went into the mountains to search for food. When she was starving, she would crush a fish about the size of the palm which she caught with lots of effort. After that, she simply cooked it and ate it without caring if the fish was still raw or uncooked. She also went around the mountain scavenging for food that could be eaten, and had encountered various poisonous snakes and insects. After all that, she started to look at the dead silent river.
That was also when she began walking towards the end of her life.
In this film, Yun Xiangxiang had almost never had to retake any scene before, unless if it was due to device failure or other reason. Everything was shot once, but it still took seven full months to film everything. She even spent the new year and her birthday with the crew.
It was because of the bad weather in the middle of the shooting, and also because of the countless injuries caused by her accident, she had to spend time to recover.
After the filming, Yun Xiangxiang was exhausted. Her heart was not tired, but her body was. After returning to the hotel, she slept for two whole days before recovering from the fatigue.
She couldn’t go home like this. If she visited Su Xiuling in such state, Su Xiuling would definitely freak out. She couldn’t even bear to look in the mirror.
Her whole person became not only skinny, but also became messy like a beggar.
Han Jing brought her to many health therapy sessions, and also brought her to the best beauty centre. After spending lots of money, Yun Xiangxiang managed to revert back to her original state after two months.
With this, she directly missed the time of application for Huaying University and the Theatre Academy.