Mon, Feb 07, 2011
The New Paper
They play against type in CNY movie

YOU might already have watched All's Well Ends Well 2011 - one of the several Chinese New Year movies to come out from Hong Kong during this festive period.

Hong Kong stars Louis Koo and Cecilia Cheung act in the movie. Odd enough that you get "Mr Cool" Koo and the wacky "big sister" Cheung playing a couple on screen; odder still that Koo takes on an effeminate role in this movie.

Koo plays a "beautiful man", an aesthetician. His character is the host of a popular talk show that touches on beauty-related topics. But his effeminate image is just put on for the women in the hope of appealing to them.

Koo's character is actually a man's man, and is in fact, quite the playboy. In the movie, to exaggerate his "sissiness", Koo's character speaks with his hands on his waist and his chest thrust out.

Granted, it's all done for a laugh in a holiday comedy, but still, Koo admitted in an interview with U-Weekly that it was hard to shake off his character even after he was done with the shooting. Some days, he said, after he got home after work, he would still use his effeminate, high-pitched voice when talking on the phone.

And that made this role his most challenging to date. It was so hard to keep a straight face.

He said: "Each time I did a scene, everyone on the film set couldn't stop laughing."

But while everyone else was busy busting a gut during the shoots, Koo's co-star Donnie Yen was busy - not busting out his signature gongfu moves. And that was even more impressive, said Koo, who added that everyone knows Yen - think IpMan(2008) and Flash Point (2007) - for his impressive fight scenes.

In the movie, however, Yen keeps his feet on the ground and his wit in the air.

Said Koo: "I've always thought Yen was a special and unique actor.

"And that he had different sides to him.

"In the film, he tried his best to be a funny man and I think that everyone who watches this movie will be in for a big surprise as to what Donnie can do in a comedy."

For years, Koo has either played the good guy - Connected (2008) - or the all-out baddie - Election (2005). So did he have any objections to playing an effeminate role?

Going nuts next?

Said Koo: "Being an actor, one must always try out different things.

"That's why when I was offered this role, I didn't really have any worries about it.

"What's more, veteran actors like Leslie Cheung and Leon Lai have also played similar roles."

So with all the different roles that he has played over the years, what is that one role that he hasn't played that he's dying to try?

"A mental patient!" said Koo.

This article was translated from the latest issue of U-Weekly.

This article was first published in The New Paper.

  They play against type in CNY movie
  The Black Eyed Peas underwhelm Super Bowl halftime
  Nat Gains
  NFL-Aguilera fumbles the lyrics at the Super Bowl
  Filming on Hobbit movies to start in March
  Despite China, US violin-makers second fiddle to none
  'Inception,' 'The Social Network' win WGA awards
  Books not bombs at Pakistan literature festival
  Agnes Monica releases hits album, goes international
  Wedded to her art, noh two ways about it
Blur about taboos?
Nat Gains
Pear and white fungus soup
Bringing smiles to those who need them most
Bunnies face uncertain future as pets in Year of Rabbit

Elsewhere in AsiaOne...

Health: Mood dampened by the sniffles

Motoring: Parking prices up in Chinatown for CNY

Business: DBS branch all decked out for CNY