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[Official Thread] Megan Lai 賴雅妍 | Current Movies: Fagara (12.9.2019), The Last Thieves (18.10.2019).

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Megan Lai 賴雅妍

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Personal Information

Chinese name: 賴雅妍 (Traditional), 赖雅妍 (Simplified)

Pinyin: làiyǎyán

English name: Megan Lai

Given name: 賴彥戎

Other names: 뢰아연 (Korean), メーガン・ライ (Japanese)

Nicknames: Girl (女孩), Big Brother Lai (賴大哥), Mie-mie (咩咩), Emperor Nuo (諾皇)

 

Birth date: 5 December 1979

Birth place: Yonghe, Taipei County (now New Taipei City)

Family: Father, mother, an elder sister

Astrological sign: Sagittarius

Blood Type: A

Chinese zodiac: Goat

Height: 172cm-174cm

Weight: 50kg

BWH measurements: 32B-24-35

Legs measurement: 111cm

Head-to-body ratio: 1:9.5

 

Languages: Mandarin, English, Taiwanese, Japanese

Interests: Coffee-making, Painting, Dancing

Talents: Mirror-writing, Coffee-making

 

Career

Occupation: Actor, model, singer-songwriter, television host

Debut: 1999, Guess (segment "Do not judge a book by its cover")

Talent agency: Star Ritz (2001-2018)

Record label: Moreear Entertainment (2015-present)

Notable works: Mars, Silence, Time Story, Miss Rose, Cafe. Waiting. Love., Bromance.

Awards: 2015 Sanlih Drama Awards: Best Actress

Instruments: Vocals, Piano

 

Education

High school: Taipei Municipal Datong High School

Alma mater: Shih Hsin University (Bachelor's degree in Information Communications)

Ming Chuan University (Master of Arts in Design Management)

 

Fun Facts

Favourite colour: Purple

Favourite celebrity: Andy Lau, Gong Yoo

Pets: 3 cats

 

Acting Credits

TV Series

(2018) Meet Me @ 1006

(2015-2016) Bromance

(2014) High Heels and a Scalpel

(2013) Jiu Jiu Nv Er Hong

(2013) Two Fathers

(2012) Miss Rose

(2011) Next Heroes

(2011) The Invaluable Treasure 1949

(2010) Rice Family

(2010) Because of You

 (2008-2009) Time Story

(2007-2008) Wish To See You Again

 (2007) Sweet Relationship

 (2006) White Robe of Love

(2006) Silence

(2005) Good Beautiful Clinic 2

 (2004) Starry Night

(2004) Mars

 (2003) Love Storm | LINK (cut version)

 (2003) Hi! Working Girl

(2003) Spicy High School Pupils

(2002) Meteor Garden II 

 

Film

(2019) The Last Thieves

(2019) Fagara

 (2016) 10,000 Miles

 (2015) The End of Love

(2014) Cafe. Waiting. Love | LINK (Abusi cut)

(2014) Proposal

(2012) Jumping Boy

(2011) You Are The Apple of My Eye | LINK (cut version)

(2011) Will You Still Love Me

(2009) L-O-V-E 

(2009) Taipei 24H

(2008) Clinic

(2007) Motorbike on Fire ! | LINK (cut version)

(2006) Auctioning Off A Corner of the World

(2005) Chocolate Rap | LINK (cut version)

 (2005) Ashia's Dream | LINK (cut version)

 (2005) How's Life

(2004) Free as Love | LINK (cut version)

 

Theater

(2019, 2017, 2014, 2012) Crazy Idol Soap

(2016) More Than Words

(2015) Crazy Television 3

(2012-2013) The Goodbye Girl

 (2011) By the End of the Flora Season

(2010) Seventeen Year Itch

(2009) Fools

 

Music Videos

(2017) Think of You by Bii | LINK

(2017) Ai Ni Wu Mu Di by Wu Bai & China Blue | LINK
(2012) Love Forever by Princess Ai | LINK
(2011) Let Go by Cindy Yen | LINK
(2010) Pisces Love by Huang Pin-yuan | LINK
(2010) Give Me A Reason To Forget by A-Lin | LINK
(2004) Queen by Faith Yang | LINK
(2002) Hotline for Help by Vic Chou | LINK
(2002) Men's Fault by  Eason Chan | LINK
(2002) World of Us by Yang Kun and Chen Lin | LINK
(2001) Deny by Chiang Yu-heng | LINK
(2001) Kite by Stefanie Sun | LINK
(2001) Future by Sammi Cheng | LINK
(2001) Firework Live by Tiger Huang | LINK
(2001) There's No Ugly Woman by Shunza | LINK
(2000) This Is by Shino Lin | LINK

 

Awards and Nominations

Acting Awards

2015: Sanlih Drama Awards: Best Actress (Bromance) - Won

2015: 50th Golden Bell Awards: Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film (The End of Love) - Nominated

2014: 49th Golden Bell Awards: Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film (Proposal) - Nominated

2013: Sanlih Drama Awards: Best Actress (Two Fathers) - Nominated

2013: Sanlih Drama Awards: Best Kiss with Weber Yang (Two Fathers) - Nominated

2011: 46th Golden Bell Awards: Best Actress (The Invaluable Treasure 1949) - Nominated

2006: 51st Asia-Pacific Film Festival: Best Actress (Chocolate Rap) - Nominated

2006: 51st Asia-Pacific Film Festival: Best Actress (How's Life) - Nominated

2005: 42nd Golden Horse Awards: Best New Performer (How's Life) - Nominated

2005: 40th Golden Bell Awards: Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film (How's Life) - Nominated

 

Other Awards

2016: FHM 100 Sexiest Women in the World (Taiwan) - 3rd Place

 

Books

2015: F.A.C.E. Short Novel (e-book) | LINK

2005: Taiwanese Dae Jang Geum's Beauty Collection: Megan Lai's Oriental Beauty 《台灣大長今美容寶典:賴雅妍漢方美容》 | LINK

 

Social Media/Websites/Fansites

Facebook - 賴雅妍Megan Lai @ PTT

Weibo - Megan Lai

Wikipedia English

Wikipedia Chinese

Baidu (Chinese)

PTT BBS Forum - Megan Lai

Facebook - 賴雅妍 雅口。吾妍 Megan Lai Fanclub

Facebook - Star Ritz (Megan Lai's former agency)

 

UNDER CONSTRUCTION

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Behind the Scenes Featurette - Three Sisters

 

Translation (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

Li Xiaofeng (as Ru-guo): Two hands?

Sammi Cheng (as Ru-shu): Hey, I can't see clearly!

Li Xiaofeng: The biggest reward filming this movie is that I got to know two good elder sisters.

Li Xiaofeng (as Ru-guo): Sis!

Sammi Cheng: I can feel that the three of us really like our characters.

Megan: Is it not funny?

Megan: I feel that our interactions and understanding of each other are pretty much the same in and out of the movie.

Director: We tried our best to film chronologically, so everyone began from being unfamiliar with each other, to gradually becoming closer.

Li Xiaofeng: From the first time we met for the script-reading, I realised "Wow, these two sisters are too easygoing!".

Megan: I think Elder Sister, she slowly adapts to having these two younger sisters...

Sammi Cheng: Actually, within a day or two, I could feel that we developed a type of chemistry.

Megan: It seems that, slowly, we start being accustomed to each other's presence.

Sammi Cheng: In one of the scenes, the three sisters find a cockroach in the house.

Li Xiaofeng: We screamed for about three or four hours. And after every take, we would say: "Ah, it's very loud, very loud, we've really disturbed everyone."

Director: These three sisters, from feeling shock and fear, and then into eventual longing, "Does Father really miss us? That's why he came back to see us?".

Li Xiaofeng: When these three sisters are together, they find familial love that is lost.

Megan: The day when we filmed the scene in the glass room...

Li Xiaofeng: We cried, and cried, and cried, until the director yelled "Cut!", but we still couldn't take control of our emotions.

Megan: ... I cannot...

Director: They are bound together by blood, and even if we are strangers, we know that we have all lost a loved one. What sort of comfort should we give each other?

Li Xiaofeng: The director seems to work magic. She's the type to quietly walk past you and whisper a sentence or two, and evoke the exact emotions that is needed. I don't know why.

Megan: Because of the director's empathy, she can lead actors into a state of mind that we ourselves cannot even imagine. In the process of filming, there was actually a very strong sense of security.

Sammi Cheng: When there are things I am unclear about, the director is often able to clear my doubts within a short period of time.

Megan: Because she wrote the script as well, the details of each character she created are very well thought out. 

Director: Ru-shu's relationship with her father is one that cannot be returned to. It is a relationship of the past. The relationship that Ru-zhi faces is one that is in-the-moment, and one that she doesn't know how to deal with. As for Ru-guo's relationship with her grandmother - they both know they love each other. But how do we face loss in a future without one another? That's why the appreciation that the three sisters have for each other, just like meeting an old friend, comes from their respective imperfect relationships.

Megan: I believe everyone has their own inadequacies that they regret and emotional scars in family relationships. After watching this movie, you will feel that you have been embraced tightly.

 

眾所周知鄭秀文(SAMMI)拍戲向來專業,今次拍攝《花椒之味》她經常需要留在廚房演出,幸好平時Sammi也時有下廚整返幾味,拍戲之時亦難不倒她。在拍攝期間,她更對兩位妹妹照顧有加,令兩位妹妹對她一直也心存感激。而且三人只要聚在一起,片場氣氛立即有所不同,她們經常也會自製笑料,然後三人無緣無故便大笑起來,在場的工作人員表示片場經常充斥著又長又尖的大笑聲,幾乎無停過。

久違的溫情港片《花椒之味》將落實於9月12日香港及內地同步上映。由許鞍華、朱嘉懿監製,麥曦茵導演及編劇,改篇自張小嫻的《我的愛如此麻辣》原著小說,並由鄭秀文(Sammi)、 《等一個人咖啡》賴雅妍、《芳華》李曉峰三位中、港、台女演員領銜主演。電影由寰亞電影製作有限公司、北京拉近影業有限公司、大地時代文化傳播(北京)有限公司、英皇影業有限公司出品,寰亞電影本港及海外發行。

#花椒之味 9月12日 #賞味人生
#鄭秀文 #賴雅妍 #李曉峰 #任賢齊 #劉德華 #劉瑞琪 #吳彥姝 #許鞍華 #朱嘉懿 #麥曦茵 #人生滋味 #五味陳雜 #重拾溫情 #寰亞電影 
鄭秀文 Sammi Cheng
賴雅妍 MeganLai @ PTT
任賢齊 Richie Jen
劉瑞琪
Heiward Mak 麥曦茵
寰亞電影 Media Asia Film

 

Translation (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

As everyone knows, Sammi Cheng has always been professional on set. This time in Fagara, she is always in the kitchen. Thankfully, Sammi also cooks from time to time, so filming such scenes is not a challenge for her. While filming, she often takes care of her two younger sisters, which they are very grateful for. Just as long as the three are together, the atmosphere immediately changes. They would also lighten the atmosphere by joking, and the three would burst into laughter for no reason. The crew members also observe that the set is always endlessly filled with bright and resounding laughter.

 

The long-awaited heartwarming film Fagara will premiere simultaneously on September 12 in Hong Kong and China. With producers Ann Hui and Julia Chu, directed and written by Heiward Mak, adapted from Amy Cheung's novel Wo De Ai Ru Ci Ma La, it stars Sammi Cheng, Megan Lai (Cafe. Waiting. Love) and Li Xiaofeng (Youth) in leading roles. 

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Megan's Weibo Update 21.7.19

《不要問我咩咩為何又接演比較中性的角色等你看了電影再告訴我你是否仍舊這麼認為之花椒之味之不是花不是椒不是味是枝不是之的我們來聊聊如枝》如枝的造型很簡單,幾個衣架就可以帶走她所有的衣服,常穿同一件外套,喜歡同一條褲子,住在城市裡需要走很長的樓梯的屋裡,堅持一份大部分母親不常支持的事業,覺得自己的血緣被分成兩半,但都不甚完整,用反世俗的眼光生活著才覺得活著,但其實她脆弱慘、超愛哭、很在乎,甚至可能喜歡Hello Kitty(筆誤!請忽略!)直到遇見第一個至親過世的重大事件,才逐一拼湊起分崩離析的生活、親情、事業與真正的自己。她有一個大姐,一個小妹,覺得夾在中間很有安全感,原來所謂的孤獨在這個三個人撐起的家裡並不存在,原來大家一起煮一鍋湯還多了另外兩種滋味,如果可以一直這麼生活著,輸不輸贏不贏還有那麼重要嗎?

#帥是一定要的##哭是一定會的##笑是突然間的##念念不忘是永遠的##哈許是要有的##花椒之味#

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Translation (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

《Don’t ask me why Mie-mie is playing yet another androgynous character watch the movie and tell me if you still think so – Fagara [花椒之味] – not the flower [花]  not the pepper [椒]  not the taste [味] it’s “branch” [枝] and not “of” [之] - let’s talk about Ru-zhi》Ru-zhi’s styling is very simple. Her clothes can fit a few hangers. She frequently wears the same jacket, likes the same pair of pants, and lives in a house in the city that needs you to walk a long flight of stairs. She’s firm on pursuing a career that is not largely supported by her mother, and feels that her lineage is split into half, but not very complete. Living a life against the norm can only be considered living, but in reality she’s very fragile, loves to cry, cares a lot, and even likes Hello Kitty. (Mistake! Please ignore!) It isn’t until she encounters the life-changing event of losing a loved one, does she pick up her life, relationships, career and true self. She has an elder sister, and a younger sister, and feels secure sandwiched in the middle. It turns out, the loneliness that is known is non-existent in this family of three sisters. It appears that when we cook a pot of soup, there is two other tastes. If we can live on like this, does it really matter if we win or lose?
#Being cool is a must# #Crying is a must# #Laughter is sudden# #Memories are kept forever# #Hashtags are a must# #Fagara#
 

Cr. megan賴雅妍 Weibo. 

https://weibointl.api.weibo.cn/share/82248750.html?weibo_id=4396516414247352

 

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Fagara Facebook update

Cr. Fagara Facebook page

Director Heiward Mak will attend the sharing conference for Fagara. Catch the live broadcast to see what the director has to share about the movie! 

 

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Fagara Weibo Update 25.7.19

成长路上,每当我说到自己的梦想,就会听到很多否定的声音。试着不去在意,也还是会怀疑自己。但在我迷茫的想要放弃时,父母总会用行动告诉我,他们在支持我。
一起来聊聊梦想吧,我想听听你们的故事。
#爱要怎么说出口# #电影花椒之味#

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Translation (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

In the process of growing up, every time I speak of my dreams, I will hear many doubtful voices. Trying not to mind, yet still having self-doubt. But when I'm in such a daze that I feel like giving up, my parents will still show through their actions that they support me.

Let's talk about dreams, I'd like to listen to your stories.

#How should love be said out loud# #Fagara#

 

"Most people think snooker is a form of entertainment, and not a sport."

 

Cr. Fagara Weibo

https://weibointl.api.weibo.cn/share/83197134.html?weibo_id=4398054649915828

 

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黃金。Golden Facebook Update with Megan

 

Translation (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

En, Rou you two are too blessed~ Mama is jealous

Megan Lai treats En, Rou very gently

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Artistes Review

Cr. Fagara Facebook page

Translations (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

After watching Fagara

artistes find moments in the movie that touches each of their hearts!

let's watch the movie together~~

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Behind the Scenes Featurette - Speak your mind

Translations (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

The relationship between Ru-zhi and her mother;

they deeply love and care for each other, but don't know how to express it.

It reminds us to talk to our loved ones!

 

Megan: Ru-zhi is a professional billiard player. Everyone will think "Wow! Very reticent. Cool." based on her appearance. Since young, she has disliked bearing the expectations of others, which is why she wants to break the conventions of what a traditional female should have.

Director: It's not easy for Ru-zhi to let out her emotions. That type of rage causes her to be stuck in a state of mental suppression.

Megan: She knows, since young, that her father is not by her side. She doesn't get along with her mother as well.

Liu Juei-chi: To her mother, Xia Liang [the father] is not able to provide a complete family. So the mother bears this inadequacy to raise her daughter.

Megan: Mom will always tell her: "I married your stepfather in order to provide you with a complete family." This is the complete family that you should have. Is it not enough?

Liu Juei-chi: Although she really really loves her daughter, she doesn't know how to express it with words.

Liu Juei-chi (as Ru-zhi's Mother): Then do you want to play billiards your whole life?

Megan (as Ru-zhi): I don't think of it as a job. I think of it as a career. You don't have a career, you wouldn't understand.

Megan: Ru-zhi seems to hide herself, but she has always wanted to achieve success. She's very diligent; she wants to be seen and validated. Filming for the scene of the competition was very stressful. I had only two weeks of preparation. During the first shot of the game, I didn't even hit the ball! The director immediately yelled "Cut!", and then dashed over from a distance. She told me: "It's completely fine, I always fail to hit the ball." Because her self-expectation is very high. If she thinks she didn't do well, she will say this. During filming for emotional scenes, she will always say things- words that make you cry, or words that hurt you.

Director: I'm already 30-something, I don't know anything other than pool. What else can I do? Everyone tells you that it's fine, but is it really fine?

 

Liu Juei-chi: Ru-zhi appears to be very strong and rebellious, but deep down, she really lacks emotional security.

Megan: Juei-chi jie has a lot of emotional scenes in this movie that are connected with mine.

Liu Juei-chi (as Ru-zhi's Mother): What has he given you?

Megan: When we are dealing with the emotions of argument, it is in fact a more difficult part.

Liu Juei-chi: We have to capture the conflicting emotions between mother and daughter.

Liu Juei-chi (as Ru-zhi's Mother): Don't you forget, it was him who did not want you!

Liu Juei-chi: I'll describe- I enjoyed being tormented by the director, it was very satisfying. The director would analyse and dissect the thoughts and feelings of the actors.

Liu Juei-chi: It's very hard...

Megan: We really- hurt each other in the movie, but we really feel sorry for each other in real life.

Liu Juei-chi: In one of the scenes, Ru-zhi forgets her cap. The director thought, when I give her the cap, it's like giving it to a lover. I think there is always this type of expression between mother and daughter.

Megan: This fully expresses the mother-daughter relationship; "I hate it when I look at you but I actually really love you." 

Liu Juei-chi: The love is too deep, too deep that they don't know how to treat each other well. After acting in this movie, I always remind myself to learn to talk things through.

Megan: I believe everyone will find a good starting point; for example, getting a fierce slap in this story about yourself.

Liu Juei-chi: After laughing and crying...

Megan: You will be embraced tightly.

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On 9/5/2019 at 11:49 PM, China Lion Film said:

Hi, Fagara will be released in the US and Canada September 13th, can you share the release information to the fans of Megan? Here is the cities list: https://www.chinalionfilm.com/fgra  

Thank you!

Thank you for providing the information! I'm sure fans would love to watch this movie when it is released in theaters around the world!  

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'Fagara' ('Huajiao zhiwei'): Film Review

by Elizabeth Kerr

hua_jiao_zhi_wei__zhong_zhen_tao_yu_shi_

Sammi Cheng joins Megan Lai and Li Xiaofeng as reconnecting sisters in director Heiward Mak’s latest film, produced by industry heavyweight Ann Hui.

Three sisters from Hong Kong, Taiwan and Mainland China, previously unknown to each other, come together to form a fragile but ultimately hopeful family in Fagara, the latest feature by writer-director Heiward Mak.

Mak is best known for easily digestible relationship dramas like Ex and Diva, and as co-writer on Pang Ho-cheung’s popular, cranky relationship drama Love in a Puff from 2010, and delivers what is arguably her most accomplished work to date. Relieving cross-strait tensions, however, takes a back seat to the emotional ebbs and flows of realizing fundamental new truths as a poorly adjusted adult and wrestling with obligations that are hoisted on us rather than accepted. Mak’s gentle sentimentality and recognizable themes could easily win Fagara attention around the region, and it should enjoy a long life at niche festivals.

Mak’s body of work has always centered on what is expected of modern women, how those expectation clash with what they themselves desire — personally, professionally, emotionally — and she has always attempted to balance local specificity with universality. The film was based on a book by ostensible Hong Kong “chick lit” writer Amy Cheung, who’s made her own career out of bittersweet novels about women struggling with familial expectations and obligations and feeling constrained by Chinese social mores and cultural taboos. It would be easy for Mak and producer Ann Hui (Boat People, The Way We Are) to slip a comment about Hong Kong-Taiwan-China relations into the mix, but it would veer away from Cheung’s original story as well as likely flirt with unnecessary controversy (particularly in light of the ongoing political unrest in Hong Kong at screening time). The most notable thing about Fagara is its non-aggressively allegorical tone for a story about three sisters from three different locations that exist in a constant state of socio-political friction.

The drama begins with frazzled Hong Kong travel agent Acacia (Sammi Cheng) dealing with her estranged father Ha Leung’s (Kenny Bee) death and the awkward — and incorrect — Taoist funeral she holds for him. Not only was his death sudden, it reveals the existence of two other grown sisters: the androgynous, pool-playing Taiwanese Branch (Megan Lai) and the orange-haired digital fashionista Cherry (Li Xiaofeng) from China. For her entire life, Acacia has harbored resentment toward the woman who took her father away from her, and upon meeting her daughter — her half-sister — she’s more than a little emotionally conflicted. Cherry initially appears to be something of a wild card, and the child of yet another woman in Chongqing who kept him away from Hong Kong. The three team up to save Ha’s hot pot restaurant and settle his debts, and in doing so they connect as a family, mourn their father and reconcile their personal relationships to him and perception of who he was.

Steering clear of overt politics, Mak falls into a comfortable family drama rhythm that passes the (over-abused) Bechdel test with flying colors. Fagara is unabashedly feminist and unapologetically feminine — yes, those are different concepts — and gives Hong Kong cinema three of the most vivid female characters to come down the pipe in a long, long time. As audiences we’re trained to expect fireworks from women who discover a potential conflict of interest with other women, but here, their mutual suspicions hinge more on surprise than antagonism, and they maturely navigate their way to a respectful bond. It’s a sisterhood in all its literal and figurative glory with the trio supporting each other without prying; offering unspoken help without judging.

Though Cheng is clearly the “star” and Acacia gets the lion’s share of the narrative focus, each gets a subplot that demonstrates the various hurdles and indignities they actually share. Acacia contemplates continuing a relationship with a man (Andy Lau) she has no real romantic affection for rather than beginning one with a doctor (Richie Jen) that excites her intellect. Cherry needs to constantly fend off by her adoring grandmother’s (Wu Yanshu) suggestions that she find a husband, consciously choosing to stay with the elderly woman she clearly adores in return. Branch (who is coded more LGBTQ than simply androgynous) has a tense relationship with her mother (Liu Jueichi), due in part to her philandering father and her unconventional professional choices. The prickly few days they spend separated as Branch reaches out to Acacia and Cherry ironically brings them closer together.

It would all be treacly, weepy nonsense were Mak not to maintain a light touch, and, especially, if the three leads weren’t so engaging. Cherry would benefit from more depth, but Li keeps the character pleasantly unpredictable. The breakout is super-cool and eminently watchable Lai, who balances Branch’s guarded sexuality and simmering thirst for both expression and connection to her mother perfectly.

 

The Hollywood Reporter

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/fagara-huajiao-zhiwei-film-review-1231571

 

Fagara film review: Sammi Cheng stars in exquisite family drama – one of 2019’s best Hong Kong films

by Edmund Lee

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4.5/5 stars
A Hong Kong woman rediscovers the treasure of family ties after her father’s death in this exquisite and quietly poignant drama. Produced by Ann Hui On-wah and adapted from a 2010 novel by popular romance author Amy Cheung Siu-han, Fagara features the best role in years for Canto-pop superstar Sammi Cheng Sau-man, and looks set to be a front-runner at next year’s Hong Kong Film Awards.
The film marks the astonishingly assured return to feature directing of former prodigy Heiward Mak Hei-yan, who made her promising debut at age 23 with teen drama High Noon (2008). She has since fallen off the radar a bit since she made a pair of poorly received commercial films – idiosyncratic relationship drama Ex (2010) and superficial showbiz satire Diva (2012) – and endured battles with depression.
Cheng plays Acacia, a travel agent who suddenly receives news of the death of her father, Ha Leung (Kenny Bee), in hospital. Having long resented him for his infidelity to her mother, Acacia is nonetheless overcome with emotions when she learns of the existence of Branch (Megan Lai Ya-yan, 10,000 Miles ) and Cherry (Li Xiaofeng, Youth ) – her two sisters, both from different mothers, that she never met.

The biggest laugh of this serene film comes during the funeral, when Acacia shows just how estranged she and dad were – by mixing up his religion. But the sisters hit it off amid their shared sense of abandonment: Branch, a Taiwanese snooker player, has never felt a part of her mother’s new family; while Cherry, a Chinese fashion vlogger, is alternately bemused and annoyed by her grandma’s concerns about her love life.

With a premise that may remind some of recent release The Lady Improper , Fagara sees its protagonists re-evaluate the generational disconnect via their efforts to revive the failing business – and signature soup base – of dad’s spicy hotpot restaurant in the cosy neighbourhood of Tai Hang. By playing down the romantic undertone of Cheung’s book, Mak’s tale of pain and forgiveness instead resonates at a far more fundamental level.

The ensemble of delicately written characters – also including Richie Jen Hsien-chi as an unwittingly smitten anaesthetist and Andy Lau Tak-wah as Acacia’s nominal partner and would-be husband – are uniformly excellent. That writer-director Mak manages to steer the potentially cloying story so far away from cliché and overt sentimentality is a testament to her unmistakably maturing skills as a storyteller.
Fagara is one of the best Hong Kong films in recent times, and I cannot wait to see what Mak does next.

 

South China Morning Post

https://www.scmp.com/lifestyle/entertainment/article/3026714/fagara-film-review-sammi-cheng-stars-exquisite-family-drama

 

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Interview with Sammi Cheng

 

Translations (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

Host: The guests we have with us today are sisters in their new movie. Welcome Sammi Cheng and Megan Lai!

Sammi/Megan: How are you?

Host: I've prepared a small game for the two of you to see if you really have chemistry like real sisters. The first question... as you can see... "A woman's loneliness, is often lonelier than you think it is", which Sammi Cheng song does this line appear in? 3, 2, 1.

Sammi: It's too easy.

Host: Is it A or B?

Host: Sammi and Megan both choose A ('Future') unanimously. It turns out Megan Lai was casted to be in the MV of Sammi Cheng's Mandarin song in 2005. (TN: the host made a mistake, the MV was actually released in 2001.)

Sammi: That's right, it's fate arranged by the heavens. I feel every collaboration I have is fate arranged by the heavens.

Host: I understand that Megan has had album releases before. Could you let Sammi listen to you sing 'Hao Hao Shuo' (the movie theme song)?

Sammi: Acapella!

Host: We've prepared the lyrics for you.

(Megan starts singing the song, joined by Sammi towards the end.)

Host: I think not only is it "Hao Hao Shuo" (say it well), it's "Hao Hao Ting" (nice to listen to). Thank you to the both of you! The movie talks about facing pain in life. When the both of you face pain in life, which of the following ways to suppress it would you choose? A: Eat spicy hot pot. B: Have crazy workout sessions. 3, 2, 1.

Sammi: I would do it like this...

Host: Sammi, why did you choose both?

Sammi: I have to consider, if I have work, if I have to look good, then "workout crazily". If I don't have work, then I'll eat spicy hot pot. I'll see what happens after.

Host: Sammi, other than these two options, are there any other options you would use to suppress your unhappiness or pain?

Sammi: How do you suppress? Wear another layer of clothing?

Host: Does it work?

Sammi: Suppress? I think there's no need to suppress happiness or unhappiness. Give yourself some time to face it. This movie has an important theme that talks about forgiveness, and to say things well. No matter if it is familial relationships. Oftentimes we are the most disrespectful and unfiltered when it comes to talking to family members. Or even when we have nice things to say, but end up saying it in awful ways. I think many people face the same thing. But I think an important message the film delivers is to say things well. Say the things you want to your family members properly. Rather than waiting till they are not around and feel deep regret.

Host: In the future three years of filming, if you have to choose only one male actor to act as a love interest, who will it be? A: Andy Lau. B: Richie Jen. 3, 2, 1. Let's have a look. Sammi chose B.

(Megan chooses Andy Lau)

Sammi: I'll choose B. Balance, right? We must create a balance. 

Megan: This time Andy Lau's guest appearance in the movie is rather short, so the time meeting him was also shorter. I hope to spend more time getting along with him, so I chose A. This time, my character in the movie is androgynous and cool. I think he hardly paid me attention, so if there are romantic scenes involved, I hope to let him see a more feminine side of me. (TN: Megan's a huge fan of Andy Lau!)

Sammi: I have not acted with Richie for a number of years. I think if we collaborate in another movie, there will be changes. After experiencing so much, we all mature and improve. In fact I hope to work together with him in a movie that is more serious, because in the past we worked together in romantic comedies, so I hope to try again.

Host: Sammi, we see you in the same frame with Andy Lau and Richie Jen. Everyone's memories start rushing back. What were your thoughts when you were filming? 

Sammi: Me too, actually. When I look at Andy, I think he's a fat guy and I'm a fat girl. 'Love on a Diet', 'Needing You', a lot of memories keep flooding back. To the audience, there'll be similar memories in the movie. 

Host: And Sammi, I've kept an eye on your social media. Every time you experience something, you would have a realisation. Now that you are more experienced, what do you think about the awards industry?

Sammi: There's not much realisation actually, it has been the realisation of losing all these years. I think acting well is the basis of the movie, as well as making room for growth. I am more concerned with whether or not I have improved. 

Host: Do you have confidence in winning next year's Hong Kong Film Awards?

Sammi: I don't have much confidence, because I filmed four movies, but only has a premiere date. The rest are still awaiting release. But my movie career has been rougher in comparison to my music career, but it is not important. Just as long as there are good roles I am willing to work hard. 

Host: Thank you Sammi and Megan for sharing. I hope the movie will touch the hearts of many others. Thank you to the both of you!

 

 

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This is amazing.. watching the video clips without subs then reading the translation. I think I learned a new skill. The perks of fangirling with megan lai , learning things out in my comfort zone. Thank you Miss Megan, wishing you more blessings and good health likewise phenomenal career in showbiz. I really want to see you soonnnn.. before the free Visa of taiwan will end, I will definitely definitely visit there..hahhahaha

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On 10/1/2019 at 4:52 PM, dc_chelsiness said:

This is amazing.. watching the video clips without subs then reading the translation. I think I learned a new skill. The perks of fangirling with megan lai , learning things out in my comfort zone. Thank you Miss Megan, wishing you more blessings and good health likewise phenomenal career in showbiz. I really want to see you soonnnn.. before the free Visa of taiwan will end, I will definitely definitely visit there..hahhahaha

yep! it's always amazing how much there is to learn from others, what more an awesome person like Megan! i haven't been to Taiwan myself, but I'd like to try out the food over there! (including Megan's fave - taiwanese fried chicken).

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[花椒之味 Fagara] Interview with Sammi Cheng

 

Translations (by TheRatchetFool_1023)

Narration: One is an ever-evolving Heavenly Queen (天后) who never stops pushing limits. One is a suave Taiwanese actress of the new generation. Sammi and Megan Lai, made their first chemistry-filled collaboration recently, had already given each other surprises since the first time they met. 
Host: Hello, Sammi. Hello, Megan. Firstly, I'd like to know if you had personally known each other prior to filming?
Sammi: Personally, no, but I have seen Megan's movies before. I think she's very handsome. In the shows I have seen her in, she appears more androgynous. So when I saw her in person, I thought: "Oh? She's so feminine." She can be a man and a woman. I think she has great versatility. 
Megan: Before this, [I'd] think "[She's a] Heavenly Queen! Will there be a feeling of unattainability?" But after meeting for the first time, that sentiment disappeared immediately. Because after meeting for the first time, Sammi was really like an older sister. She said: "Sisters, why don't we take a picture?" And because our first meeting was in Hong Kong, she would be especially caring - Did you eat well? Did you sleep well? And, does everyone understand each other?
Narration: This time, a significant number of Sammi's former co-stars appear in the movie. Other than 'warm-guy' Richie Jen, there's another 'Heavenly King' Andy Lau.
Host: This time, two of your partners Andy and Richie appear in the movie. Is there a sense of familiarity?
Sammi: There is. Firstly, I have to thank Andy for helping us out in the movie. Truthfully, this movie is not a mega-production, but Andy was very willing to help us out. I'm very grateful for him.
Host: Do you feel jealous, Megan? Sammi gets to have both of them.
Megan: Yes, yes. I feel... that time when we first met, I told Elder Sister (Sammi) jokingly: "If my ex-boyfriend was Andy Lau I wouldn't let him be my ex." Because honestly, growing up, my one and only idol has been Andy Lau. So filming for the movie, I never thought I could- (Host: Did you see him?) I saw him. I felt that my biggest dream, since young- I can't say since young - has been fulfilled.
Host: This is your first time meeting Andy?
Megan: Yes.
Narration: In the movie, Sammi and Megan are good sisters. After filming, the two have also become good sisters!
Sammi: Our relationship is very good. We have a chat group, and would chat once-in-a-while. We give each other a recap on what we're doing recently. I think this is something that seldom happens.
Host: My last question is - can I take a picture? I see you (Sammi) like how Megan sees Andy.
   

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