The rumour mill has been abuzz lately with news that Yang Zi landed herself the leading lady role in a new costumed xianxia drama opposite Cheng Yi. The speculation started to pick up momentum after a photo emerged of the actress supposedly in her Chen Xiang Ru Xie 沉香如屑 costume.
The project has so far managed to confirm only its male lead whilst leaving the name of its heroine up in the air still. Does this rumour (and the photo!) then signify a Cheng Yi and Yang Zi pairing is indeed happening?
Yang Zi Fans Band Against Another H&R Century Pictures Project
Now normally, fans would be quite chuffed to learn that their favourite actress landed herself a new role, but it turns out Yang Zi’s fans are very much not okay about this. In recent years, fans have grown increasingly dissatisfied with the direction their idol’s career is going under her management company H&R Century Pictures’ banner.
At the peak of her career, many fans feel like she should have the freedom to choose the dramas she wants to be involved in and to try out different genres and characters that will challenge her abilities as an actress instead of being pigeonholed into the same dramas H&R seems to be putting her in. Furthermore, fans believe that “leaking” the photo and pushing out that rumour might be the company’s way of using public opinion to force Yang Zi to take the project.
Signing her up for yet another costumed xianxia would certainly ensure the actress will continue to serve as the company’s cash cow as some fans have pointed out. If rumour is to be believed, H&R Century Pictures is said to be haemorrhaging a lot of money with a debt amounting up to 800 million yuan. Leveraging on Yang Zi’s popularity and attaching her name to the drama will at least guarantee those sponsorships and advertising contracts will continue rolling in for the company’s newest project.
[UPDATE] On April 2, Yang Zi studio, H&R Century Pictures and Youku released a statement to confirm that Yang Zi will indeed be signing on for Chen Xiang Ru Xue. They explain that Yang Zi had declined the project in 2020 due to her schedule, etc. But as of mid-March of 2021, H&R Century Pictures and Youku offered the role to her again. Through active communication between all parties, Yang Zi is confirmed to star in the project.