In part 2 of the Green Room interview, the focus was more Michael and Felix’s personal lives rather than on work. Also, I like how this part talks more about ‘the good ole days’ (the 80s).
Here are the highlights:
.> When Carlo asked Felix how he felt about coming back to film GMG, Felix said that he rediscovered the feelings from when he collaborated with Michael back in the 80s – the good times they had hanging out with each other, working together, eating together, etc.
.> Michael actually was really desperate to have Felix film GMG and so was willing to make any accommodations needed in order for it to happen. For example, Felix is not too keen on doing the early morning shooting scenes since he sleeps late, whereas Michael sleeps early so he gets up early as well, so he agreed to take on all the early morning shifts and give Felix the later shifts so that he can sleep in.
.> Felix hadn’t been back to TVB in 9 years, so Carlo asked him from that period until now, what differences has he noticed stepping back into TVB City. Felix jokingly replied that when he watched the video playbacks of his scenes, he noticed the dark circles under his eyes.
.> Michael mentioned again why Felix doesn’t have to film series nowadays and why he is able to live such a comfortable, leisurely life for the past 10 years: his Condor Heroes Trilogy from the 80s still continues to be popular all over the world and has an especially huge following in mainland China…so Felix is invited to do various performances on stage all over China and Asia (one performance is actually quite lucrative)….plus all the royalties from the trilogy repeatedly airing everywhere is enough to last him a lifetime.
.> Felix says that he has gotten into singing and doing karaoke recently, so he’s been doing a lot of ‘Fai Wong’ (輝黃) c oncerts in China with his buddy Eddie Cheung (the ‘fai’ is Eddie and ‘wong’ is Felix).
.> Of course, at some point during the interview, Carlo asked the 24 thousand dollar question: Will Felix do another series any time soon if at all?
Felix’s response: Leave it up to fate – he doesn’t want to ‘shut the door’ immediately by saying that he never will, as no one knows what may happen in the future. Felix also emphasized that during the filming of GMG, he was able to ‘rekindle’ those feelings from the 80s when he would collaborate with his buddies and it made him want to work with them again (though he also said that realistically, it wasn’t going to happen – more on this later).
.> They also talked about their fellow Tiger buddy Andy Lau. Michael said that Andy had promised that if the 2 of them (Michael and Felix) did a series, he would do a cameo or be an ‘extra’ in the series – however he didn’t honor his promise (there’s a story behind it actually – more on that later)…Felix chimed in that Andy at least did come to visit them on set (though Michael claimed that the reason why Andy came was because Felix was known for being a bit temperamental on set in the olden days and so Andy came to see if he was going to ‘flare up’ like in the past….LOL!)
.> Felix said that Andy caused a huge commotion in TVB when he visited because he was walking around all over the place saying hi to people – everyone (especially the newbies who idolized him) went wild and wanted to take pictures with him. (Well, we know Nancy Wu was one of those ‘crazy’ ones because she talked about it on Weibo and also uploaded the picture she took with Andy, Michael, Felix, and Jessica).
.> The other big question that everyone wanted to know was whether Andy would ever go back to film another series for TVB. They said that Andy actually really wants to do a series, but realistically, it's not going to happen because of his tremendously busy schedule -- but he is open to doing cameos and such....in fact, he almost did a cameo for GMG -- he had visited the set while they were filming and when he was in the TVB canteen chatting with Michael and Felix, they had to shoot the next scene...Andy kept sitting there and didn't want to leave, so Michael asked him if he wanted to be in the scene...Andy said "sure" and continued to sit there....in the end, Michael and Felix decided not to let him do the scene because it would be wasted, since the focus would be on Andy (Michael said that even if Andy sat in a far corner with his back to the cameras, everyone would know it's him, since he's easily recognizable) -- they jokingly said that they didn't want Andy to steal their thunder so they kicked him out -- plus he had already caused such a disruption on set already just by showing up (LOL!).
.> Felix did say that he is open to doing another series if the right opportunity presents itself, but it’s not something that he actively seeks (especially since he does not like the crazy lifestyle of the television industry). Felix did mention that he is interested in doing a comedy – he said that people think he is too ‘upright’ (people always have that ‘hero’ type view of him from his character in Condor Heroes and also from all the ancient series he had done) and wonder at his comedic abilities, so he wanted to prove to people that he is capable of comedy (as a side note, Michael interrupted and said that he was just about to mention this about Felix, but was afraid to, so glad that Felix brought it up himself…hahaha).
.> A funny part was when Carlo mixed up Felix’s Kwok Jing character with Andy’s Yang Guo character (Carlo accidently said ‘Shun Diao’ instead of ‘Sheh Diao’)…Michael and Felix pretended to be shocked (like how dare he mix them up…LOL!) and then corrected him.
.> After this, the conversation turned to Michael and Felix’s 30 year friendship and also 80s Acting Class stuff…
.> Michael and Felix actually met back on September 1st, 1979 as part of TVB’s 9th Acting Class…when asked about their classmates from that class, they said that most of them are no longer in the industry.
.> They also described how the Acting Classes in those days worked and how different it is from today. Pretty much the acting classes during that time lasted 1 year and were separated into 4 quarters of 3 months each. There would be a total of 5000 to 6000 people who would apply and only 60 would get accepted; those 60 would then do through classes and various tests – those who didn’t pass the tests would get eliminated…by the end of the year, there would usually only be about 20 people (at least that was the case with their class) who get to graduate. Once they graduate, they get a chance to sign with TVB to become part of the drama department, but of course not everyone signs in the end (so realistically speaking, it’s actually only a handful who go through the entire course, pass all the tests, graduate, and sign with the company).
.> I really liked the part where Michael and Felix talked about their 30 year friendship: they described how they went through thick and thin together and almost all of life’s milestones together (marriage, children, etc.). Also, they love playing soccer (that’s one of their common interests – bowling is another one)…Felix said that they’ve been through so much together that they’ve even seen each other in their underwear! (hahaha). Michael quickly clarified that what Felix meant by ‘underwear’ are the soccer shorts that they used to wear to play (shorts so short that they could almost see each other’s underwear….lol!)
.> Asked if they ever fought in their 30 year friendship, both Michael and Felix confidently said “No” – not even verbal arguments! They said part of the reason for this is because the 2 of them have always been especially close – they play all types of ‘ball’s ports together (soccer, bowling, etc.) and since they live so close to each other and know each other’s families, they also have family gatherings together a lot, so they have a pretty deep relationship.
.> We know that Michael and Felix have a close relationship, but how about the rest of the Tigers? Michael was about to respond and Felix jumped in to tell Michael to be careful what he said (hahaha)…Michael expressed that the 5 of them are definitely good friends due to being colleagues for so long and seeing each other a lot during the 80s because of work. However, in terms of personal life, Tony is more shy and quiet and has fewer common interests with the other 4, so they didn’t hang out as much outside of work.
.> How about the possibility of a 5 Tiger reunion (aka the 5 Tigers getting together in another series or film)?
Michael’s response: Never say never – again, let’s leave it up to fate. He also said that realistically speaking, it would be very hard due to their schedules. Michael said that the closest they came to a reunion was when they did the movie ‘Brothers’ back in 2007 – Andy had actually suggested them getting back together, but unfortunately Tony was too busy and wasn’t able to do it. Michael added that the opportunity for a reunion – though highly unlikely – is still open as long as there’s still ‘heart’ to do so.
.> Felix chimed in by saying that it would be so great if the 5 of them would be able to get together and do a ‘world tour’ of sorts (pretty much travel all over the world to perform)…when he said this, Felix put his head on Michael’s shoulder and sighed (hahahaha…that was a funny moment – it was like they were a couple or something….teeheehee…)
.> Next, Carlo asked if it was possible that Felix’s wife would make a comeback (since both Michael and Jamie as well as Felix already did). Felix pretty much said no, there is not much opportunity for that, since she is tremendously busy (she’s an insurance agent) and has no interest whatsoever in the entertainment industry anymore.
.> Both Michael and Felix stated that their next goal is to get Andy to come back and do a cameo in a series (he wouldn’t have time to do an entire series, but a cameo would be nice)
.> Near the end of the interview, Carlo asked about Michael’s and Felix’s family, especially their kids. Now that all of their kids are grown, does this mean they are more free now to do their own thing? Carlo was really interested in Michael and Felix’s interaction with their children because he has 3(?) children of his own and so wanted to get some pointers. Both guys are good friends with Carlo and hang out with him a lot as well: they said that Carlo is actually a very good father – when he plays bowling with them, he is always looking at his watch and when time comes to pick up his kids, he leaves no matter what happens (he puts his wife and kids above ‘playing’ with his buddies)….they kept praising how Carlo is such a good father and husband.
.> Michael said that back in the 90s, when he immigrated overseas, he did so because of his kids, but now that they are grown (his son is 17 and his daughter is almost 20), he and Jamie don’t need to ‘take care’ of them anymore.
.> As for Felix, he stated that in terms of interacting with his daughter, it’s not as much about the physical strength as it is about mental energy and spirit. Michael interrupted and teased Felix, revealing that the other reason why Felix doesn’t have time to film series is because he has to do ‘chauffeur’ duties (drive his daughter and wife around).
.> Both guys have been successful in raising their children, so how do they interact with their kids – like friends or parents?
Michael didn’t really answer the question (though he’s said before that he treats them like friends). However he teased Felix again by revealing that Felix’s daughter is very pretty and looks almost exactly like his wife, so when he communicates with his daughter, it’s reminiscent of when he was courting his wife (hahaha…how does Michael know?). Michael also said that Felix is like ‘putty’ when it comes to his daughter (hinting that he is ‘afraid’ of her and waits on her hand and foot…LOL) – he says that Felix buys everything for his daughter and if she says that he is wrong about something, then he’s wrong – but then Michael added that he is like that with his daughter as well (ahahahaha!!).
That was pretty much the end of the interview (definitely a great one)!!