19th October 2010
26th October 2010
verbatim transcript from tvbblog.com on Imperial Bodyguards (The Life and Times of a Sentinel)
steven ma tvb.com 2010-11-01
Reporter: Hello, Ma Zai, what kind of role are you doing this time?
Steven: This time the role is very challenging as an imperial bodyguard. I’m an martial arts expert, learn kung fu from young from my mother, Helen Ma. From an ordinary citizen, a regular man, who got into the palace and later got to know Kenneth Ma, who is a ‘wong ye’ (emperor’s brother; a prince) but I didn’t know that and we became friends. He nurtures slowly me and finally got me close to Hong Hei (Kangxi) as a bodyguard, and I also protect Grand Empress Dowager Hau Zong. Later, I found out that it was Hau Chong who destroyed my grandfather and clan. I seek revenge but at the same time it is my duty to protect the three of them. Also they use me to furtively sabotage each other, so it turns into having me going against each one of them. But I myself have my own agenda. I trust Ma Ming, distrust Hong Hei and hate Hau Chong greatly. So it is really a very complicated situation.
Reporter: Very complicated with lots of struggles.
Steven: What Uncle Choi said is very true. Can’t describe clearly the story right now because the laying out of the story from the very beginning is already very unique in its scriptwriting. It has no comedy, totally serious drama, very deep and intense. My situation is the toughest facing some many powerful personalities, and what’s more, in the end, they all want me to die. How to survive, and later, I even have to assist Hong Hei. Very complicated. And later, Ma Ming wants me to die, and Hau Chong wants me to die, too, so how can I keep myself alive at the same time help Hong Hei. So this complex story among all my series to this day, this role is the most difficult.
Reporter: Where does the difficulty lie in? In internal struggle scenes or in the fighting scenes?
Steven: The fighting scenes are ok, I’ve confidence in them. I’m one person confronting them, so need to act out 3 different attitudes, at the same time, Mak Bao (Evergreen) and other bodyguards bully and taunt me. So, very complicated but very fun
Reporter: There must be some romance in it
Steven: There is some romance in it. Met Selena. She is a gak gak (princess) But I didn’t know that at first. She has her own things to do, too. But our romance is difficult to develop further. We have the heart but it is difficult because of status, moreover, I’m just a ‘lou choi’ (underling) so how can I have a romance with a gak gak? My relationship with Selena is a tragic story. (any intimate scenes?) How intimate can a scene be in a Qing drama? During Qing dynasty, just holding hands was already a big deal. So don’t even mention ‘kissing’
Reporter: Ma Ming said need to add some atmosphere.
Steven (laughing): Ma Ming this “si ham sap zai” (lustful boy) I have a lot of brotherhood scenes with him. And we often said in this scene, even the men like the women become brokeback. Haha!
Reporter: That’s why he protested to the top brass. To add more intimate scenes and more women
Steven: So I said, can you add in Yip Suen (?) for a triangle love among us , can or not?… nonono, not Yip Suen, I said it wrongly, it’s Zhu Suen (Oceane Zhu)
Reporter: You like Oceane?
Steven: It's not that, but that I think she is “hou dak yi” (amusing) in Qing series. Quite funny. I always said I have no scenes with her, like last time in 7 Days of Isolation.
Reporter: This time it's very ‘hou dak yi’, (amusing) so many overseas girls (gui mui zai)
Steven: yeah, if they don’t mind, I’m willing to speak Cantonese with them.
Reporter: They said they came up with a game, if speak English then will be fined 10 dollars. Why don’t you be the referee?
Steven: I believe they will work hard by themselves. This is their first filming so I believe they will treasure this opportunity. I hope they will ga yao.
Reporter: ok, thank you, Ma Zai.
Steven: thank you.