Drama queen

By Xu Fan | China Daily | Updated: 2018-09-13 08:08
The latest palace drama Ruyi's Royal Love in the Palace features a number of struggling souls behind the walls of the Forbidden City, such as the first queen, starring Dong Jie. 

"The Qing Dynasty reached the peak of its prosperity during the period between the reign of the emperors Kangxi and Qianlong (the former's grandson). As our story is set in part of this period, we have tried to make the props as authentic as possible and to recreate the golden age of the Qing Dynasty," Wang Jun, the director, tells China Daily.

He adds that the fine-art designers sought inspiration from many historical scrolls, including the paintings of Italian missionary, Giuseppe Castiglione, who served as an artist at the imperial court during the Kangxi and Qianlong eras.

But the series has also received criticism over the age of the leading performers.

In the early episodes, Zhou, who is in her 40s, plays the 15-year-old Ruyi, and actor Huo, who will turn 39 in December, stars as the 16-year-old Qianlong.

Despite their good looks and their accomplished acting ability, a number of online commentators said they made unconvincing teenagers, and criticized the series' producers for not using younger actors to portray the lovestruck teens.

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