Drama queen

By Xu Fan | China Daily | Updated: 2018-09-13 08:08
[Photo provided to China Daily]

Responding to the controversy, Wang blames himself, admitting he was wrong to shoot the protagonists' teenage scenes toward the end of the long nine-month filming schedule-three times longer than domestic series' usual take to shoot.

"All the cast members were extremely tired. Zhou could only rest for three or four days each month. She was suffering from facial swelling while playing her character's teenage self," says Wang.

"Huo had just played the elderly Qianlong-depicted in his 80s. Even though he removed the aging makeup with the white beard, it was difficult for an actor to quickly transform himself into a teenager," explains Wang, adding that it would also have been a challenge to find two performers who looked like Huo and Zhou in their 20s or younger.

As well as a panoramic portrayal of royal life, the series also aims to explore a new formula as it reaches its climax, says Huang Lan, the producer.

"It will make the tale unlike any other (similar shows in the genre). We hope the audiences will be willing to accept our innovative efforts," she adds.

Contact the writer at xufan@chinadaily.com.cn

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