Goodbye My Princess 东宫 probably has one of the most tragic premises ever but despite the heartbreak, it has become a hit with audiences. Ke Yitong, one of the 6 scriptwriters for the drama talks about the script writing and casting process during a recent interview.
Ke Yitong reveals that the script was revised numerous times during discussions with director Li Muge, whom she describes as a candid man with a girl’s heart. She also says that the most revised part of the script was when Prince Li Chengyi decided to start a rebellion, mentioning that they had to change the scene 10 times as Li Muge was very particular about it.
With a budget of 200 million yuan, producers chose a determined Chen Xingxu to play the male lead, believing he was perfect for the role. Ke Yitong admits that she was surprised at first that someone like Chen Xingxu was casted as the lead since she didn’t think Chen was handsome enough to play Li Chengyi despite having seen his portrayal of Yang Kang in the 2017 version of The Legend Of The Condor Heroes.
Ke Yitong changed her mind after Chen Xingxu did a script reading because she realized that he was really handsome and that Chen was able to portray the darkness, the brooding and the innocence of Li Chengyi very well.
Ke Yitong also mentions that Peng Xiaoran wasn’t the first choice to play the lead. The director initially wanted an actress who was more popular. With the drama’s budget constraints, they had to settle for Peng Xiaoran who Ke praised as being very beautiful. With the success of the drama, it seems that going with the two relatively new faces worked out for the best.