In order to shoot Black Clouds, the filming crew specially found a vocal teacher for Rong Xu to teach him to sing.
Director Liang's thought was that although Rong Xu could sing beautifully, he had no professional knowledge. As was known to all, in a film, a character couldn't use dubbing unless the actor or actress gave up being nominated and winning awards with this character.
To win movie awards was extremely demanding on actors. If the voice of the character wasn't that of the actor, it meant the voice, as part of the performance, didn't belong to the actor, then he wouldn't deserve a corresponding award. No matter how excellent the performance was, the actor simply couldn't be awarded. Yes, it was that strict.
Therefore, if possible, the crew of Black Clouds wished Rong Xu could sing in his own voice. Only when it really didn't work would they consider using dubbing or replacing the singing part with Ling Xiao's voice. But either way would more or less affect the presentation of the movie.
Director Liang's thought was of good intention, but to his surprise, the professional teacher came to him just ten minutes after the lesson started, huffing, "Old Liang, I didn't expect you were such a person. What did you tell me? You said Rong Xu seemed to know a little about vocal techniques, but never released records, so you let me teach him. Why did you lie to me in this way?"
Director Liang was dumbfounded, "I…lied to you? What do you mean? Old Chen, we must make it clear right away."
Teacher Chen pulled the corner of his lips, responding helplessly, "Rong Xu has very solid vocal techniques. I'll write my name backwards if you insist he didn't have professional training! Alright, I have nothing to teach him in a short time. Even if in a year, I can at most help him adjust voice. He's already a master of techniques. Stop fooling me around. Treat me to dinner tonight and I'll forgive you about this."
Director Liang, "…" So he had spent a lot on merely a ten-minute lesson plus a dinner?!
Director Liang shouldn't be blamed for this, neither should Rong Xu, of course.
The day before, Director Liang told him to come to the movie set earlier to learn something. Director Liang hadn't made it clear, so Rong Xu hadn't expected that Director Liang should find him a vocal teacher. In his previous life, Rong Xu had three-year vocal training. Even though he was modest not to brag himself as top level, he indeed had very solid skills.
For this incident, Rong Xu decided to treat Director Liang to dinner as an apology. He invited Teacher Chen as well.
At the dinner, a few drinks catalyzed the chat between the famous director and the well-known vocal teacher, who totally forget the incident that had just happened on the day. But when Rong Xu was about to enjoy some wine, Teacher Chen suddenly became sober and advised him seriously, "If you want to be a good singer, quit spicy food, alcohol, as well as any heavy-tasted food."
Director Liang laughed in amusement, "Stop it. The kid is just in a movie, as an actor, not a singer."
Teacher Chen also laughed, "Look at me. I forget. I'm so used to be nervous about it."
Rong Xu smiled while nodding.
It seemed that these two really drank a lot tonight.
Maybe due to his habits in the last life, this life, Rong Xu hadn't drunk any sort of alcohol yet. Usually some wine at most. Out of subconscious, he protected his throat. Even if he was now an actor, he would habitually protect the throat.
This was a habit that had been inserted to his DNA, just like he had used to do vocal training again and again until the throat felt dry and hurt. As long as it started, he would keep trying and not give up.
In two days, the plot of Vie for Supremacy would develop to the midpoint, and Moqi Yao's scenes were coming to an end. Of course, the audience didn't know this, but Rong Xu, with interest, frequently took out his cellphone to check comments from online followers.
The crew of Black Clouds had made full preparation, and tomorrow would be the official start-up ceremony. During this time, Rong Xu had been staying with the crew and learning from an elderly composer the habits and hobbies of Ling Xiao. If he wanted to play this character, naturally he had to learn about him as much as possible in order to present an authentic Ling Xiao.
The next morning when the sky was dim, the Black Clouds crew burnt incense and started shooting, all in silence.
The leading actor and actress, director, producer, investor, and screenwriters were all present. The director was the first one to offer incense, and then the leading actor Rong Xu and leading actress Yu Siyu, followed by the producer, investor…
The procedure had no difference from other crews, so everyone finished their own tasks with ease. After Director Liang led the leading actor, actress, producer and investor to cut the red ribbon which symbolized commencement, the Black Clouds crew officially started its shooting.
Everything seemed normal and simple, but there was one strange thing--
No media staff showed up.
Yes, from the beginning to the end of the ribbon-cutting ceremony, no media participated in it! The attendees included only the crew staff and agents and assistants of actors. Except for them, no reporters were seen.
This didn't mean, however, that the Black Clouds crew was so unworthy of media coverage that no correspondents wanted to report what happened inside. The fact was exactly the opposite. Right at the Movie Town of S city, hundreds of reporters swarmed up around the shooting scene, trying all means to sneak inside to cover the first-hand news.
One of them complained in the bitterly-cold wind, "The Black Clouds crew should bar reporters! What a strange crew!"
Starting from this morning, the Black Clouds crew was on full alert, blocking the shooting site and leaving the media no access to get inside.
Director Liang resolutely turned down every interview invitation and even requested that all staff members be dismissed should they disclose any relevant information, even the cast.
The more they kept it mysterious, the more eager the outside was to know about this crew.
Black Clouds was a movie in memory of Ling Xiao, something everyone knew. From a year ago since the movie was approved to this day of official shooting commencement, every fan of Ling Xiao had been closely following it. The fans across the country…no, across the globe were expecting every detail of the movie. Therefore, reporters naturally wanted to dig out more news about it.
The opening ceremony ended like this without any media.
In the afternoon when they prepared to take the final costume photo, Director Liang, worried that Rong Xu might have doubts, specially explained to him with patience, "Don't think too much. This movie is destined to be followed by billions of fans. Till now, Ling Xiao still has two hundred million fans on weibo, so I didn't publicize the crew so that the shooting won't be disturbed."
Hearing this, Rong Xu slightly nodded, smiling, "I know. Director Liang wants to concentrate on making a quality work regardless of outside comments."
His words made Director Liang grin and speak the forthright northeast dialect, "Kid you're on the track. Good. Good. When free, go and chat with Yu Siyu. She's a nice person and your senior, also with the Huaxia Entertainment. She'll take care of you."
Rong Xu responded with a smile.
Perhaps due to Director Liang's words, that evening, Yu Siyu came to Rong Xu.
She was a gentle amiable woman. The soft hair was tied into a bun, leaving only two strands dropping along the cheek, making her even gentler. She was different from either Tang Menglan, who was brightly beautiful, or Zhang Tongtong, who was graceful and elegant. Yu Siyu seemed like a harbor so warm and soft that on one would be angry at her, because the sight of her made a heart melt.
But at odds with her soft appearance, her speech was direct, "We're with the same company, Rong Xu. If you have any questions, just come to me. You only work in the business for half a year with two TV series, right? So any problem regarding movie, come to me."
Rong Xu didn't refuse and smiled, "Thank you, Sister Yu."
Yet Yu Siyu shook her head, "Don't thank me. You're the leading actor. If your character didn't present well, then the whole movie will have problems. I like Ling Xiao very much. Though my favorite isn't Black Clouds, he's my favorite singer. I'm looking forward to seeing you performing an authentic Ling Xiao."
These words answered a question that Rong Xu had had.
He knew the leading character was Yu Siyu when he decided to take the script.
Most of the candidates of the leading male character were A-lister young men. Among them, he and Ling Zhen had never participated in a movie; he himself was an even fresher one. Jiao Jingshan had a few movies, but the box office wasn't good, and his performance on TV series wasn't outstanding either. Why was Yu Siyu willing to help shoot such a biography movie with a male character as the main one?
It turned out that Yu Siyu was also a fan of Ling Xiao.
It made sense.
Yu Siyu was the winner of the best newcomer of the Golden Phoenix Award five years ago, the best supporting actress of the Effie Award three years ago, the best supporting actress of Oscar last year and the year before last year. She was also nominated as the best actress of the Golden Phoenix Award last month.
In terms of awards, Yu Siyu was definitely an A-lister big name. More precious was that though she didn't get too many awards, the box office was really impressive.
If Tang Menglan was the recognized queen of TV series among all A-lister actresses, then Yu Siyu was the queen of movie. In the past six years, her eleven movies hit a global box office of twelve billion and three million!
She couldn't compete with the international movie stars like Wen Xuan or Xiao Muyan, but she was just twenty-nine years old, still young to win an award of movie queen, yet she managed to achieve such great box office. Therefore, she was the beloved one of directors among all A-lister actresses.
Chatting for a while with Yu Siyu, Rong Xu found that this actress was straightforward in nature, but also a nice person as Director Liang said. She talked outright without hitting around the bush, but when it came to professional subjects, she showed patience as well.
To sum up, she really meant to offer Rong Xu help as an experienced senior.
Take the moment before everyone got back to hotel for example, Yu Siyu suddenly reminded Rong Xu, "You're still young and a little reckless, but there are things you must pay attention to. Though our movie doesn't enjoy an investment of astronomical figures, many big names will come as guest performers. As far as I know, Xia Muyan and Chu Qi will come, so Rong Xu, you must pay attention to your words and behaviors. Make sure to be courteous."
The reminder was put forth in a serious tone, not at all subtle nor tactful, but well accepted by Rong Xu.
To the ear of some new actors, these words might sound like a warning: "You small potato should be clear of how you are before big figures. Don't be stupid." But Rong Xu knew that she worried that he might accidently offend someone even without noticing.
Thinking of this, Rong Xu liked her more. He smiled back, "Thank you, see you tomorrow, Sister Yu."
Yu Siyu slightly nodded, "See you."
There were people in the world that were so wonderful indeed. On the way back to his room, Rong Xu pondered to himself that a refreshing soft exterior Yu Siyu had, how come she was so serious? If this was known to her fans, he bet they wouldn't believe it.
Thinking these, Rong Xu took out the key and inserted it into the keyhole. As he gently twisted, sound of steady footsteps rang from behind him and finally stopped not for away from him.
With a 'crack' the door opened. Just before entering the room, Rong Xu subconsciously turned to check who the person was over there. However, the moment he saw that person, his body stiffened out of shock. The first idea occurred to him was that--Qin Cheng was also a guest performer of this movie?!
The good-looking and indifferent man lowered his gaze and looked at the young man calmly. The pair of slim bottomless dark eyes concealed all kinds of emotions within them. He quietly eyed this youth staying still in shock before him. With time, he should think of his cutely numb look on Superb Entertainment.
Qing Cheng's lips curled up in the corner, but his voice sounded surprised. He pretended to be caught by surprise, "What a coincidence! You're also here… Are you in Black Clouds too?"