Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Memories of HK Entertainment’s Golden Age: "TV Screen Idols" Magazine (螢幕偶像) – POST # 1
**Note: Picture taken by me (my apologies for the slight blurriness of the picture -- my photography skills aren't that great!)
I was cleaning out my closet the other day and came across my collection of old entertainment magazines (when I say "old", I mean it in the literal sense, as the magazines are actually from the 1980s and 1990s -- in fact, the oldest one dates back more than 25 years!). Those who have been around for awhile (like me) and had followed HK entertainment back in the 80s and 90s might be familiar with the magazine: 螢幕偶像 (translated as "TV Screen Idols").
The magazine was immensely popular back in the mid-80s through the mid-90s or so (during the time when HK entertainment was at its peak), primarily because of the colorful posters and glossy pics of TV stars from that era. Of course, the magazine also consists of many great articles related to various celebrities (a treasure trove of information for me, since it's hard to find stuff about 80s/90s celebrities nowadays, especially the ones that are not active in the industry anymore) as well as detailed spreads and pictures related to TV series from that time (mostly TVB, but there's alot of ATV related stuff in there as well). The magazine is actually no longer in print, as the company that published the magazine pretty much closed up shop (officially) in early 2000 (though I did find out a few years ago that the owner of the publishing company, Mr. Hung, still has a small shop somewhere in HK filled to the brim with old pictures and such of celebrities from the 80s and 90s and still has a few devoted customers who frequent his shop....).
The other unique thing about this magazine is that they would come out with "special editions" every so often -- for example, every Chinese New Year, they would come out with a "Golden Edition" to commemorate the occasion (where they would have various celebrities on the covers holding CNY related items) or if a particular series was extremely popular, they would dedicate an entire issue (almost) to that series (these special editions featured exclusive behind the scenes stuff as well as pictures and posters galore – a few of the ones in my collection include the special editions for "The New Heaven Sword and Dragon Sabre", "The Book and the Sword", “The Yang’s Saga”, “Police Cadet”, etc.). And of course, the commemorative issues dedicated to special events are ones that are absolutely worth cherishing – for example, the special ‘celebrity weddings’ issues (Michael Miu / Jamie Chik, Felix Wong / Annie Leung, Liu Kai Chi / Barbara Chan, etc.) as well as the ‘tribute’ issues to celebrities who left us during that time (Barbara Yung, Danny Chan, Wong Ka Kui, etc.).
Unfortunately, my collection is incomplete, as I only have about 60 or so issues of the magazine out of the approximately 95 issues that were published back in its existence. BUT I'm not going to complain because I'm lucky to even have the issues that I do (especially knowing how hard it is to find even 1 issue of this magazine nowadays).
Those who know me know that I’m somewhat of a ‘sentimental old-timer’ when it comes HK entertainment – one of the things I enjoy doing is pulling out old magazines, books, videos, etc. and re-reading / re-watching them…it’s actually quite fascinating to see how certain celebrities have changed throughout the years (or in some cases, how much they haven’t changed) – plus it’s interesting to read about what some of the celebrities experienced back then, which in some way helped to shape how the entertainment industry is currently.
Anyway, seeing that I've been in a "nostalgic" mood lately (and found the magazine collection at the right time), I will be going through and re-reading some of the magazines throughout the next few months – of course, when I feel up to it (and if time permits), I’ll also share excerpts of some of the articles from various issues on this blog (though it might take some time due to having to translate the articles from Chinese to English). In any case, I’m looking forward to taking the trip down memory lane! :-)