It looks like all systems are go for actor Xiao Zhan as his return to the entertainment scene appears to be going quite smoothly these days. Aside from signing on to become the face of Chinese sportswear brand Li-Ning, longtime fans of the actor will be glad to know that he is all set to star in a brand new drama adaptation of author Cang Yue’s novel Zhu Yan, which will be entitled Yu Gu Yao 玉骨遥.
If the name Cang Yue sounds familiar, she is indeed the very same author who brought us Listening Snow Tower and the still unaired Mirror: Twin Cities starring Li Yifeng and Yuki Chen. Zhu Yan, from whence Yu Gu Yao is based on, was actually written as the prequel to Mirror: Twin Cities. With its epic tale of battles, love and magic, its creator Cang Yue once said that she was heavily inspired by Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings series and has high hopes to have built the Chinese version of a similar fantastical world Tolkien has created in his books.
The novel Zhu Yan tells the tale of the relationship that exists between Shi Ying, the great master of Jiu Yi mountain with his headstrong disciple Zhu Yan; and the fate of the Kong Sang dynasty in which they both play a hand in shaping. Xiao Zhan plays the role of Shi Ying opposite a brand new pairing with up and comer Ren Min from Serenade of Peaceful Joy who landed the role of Zhu Yan. However given the title change to Yu Gu Yao, many are speculating that a change in the story might also be in the works, with the drama adaptation being less focused on Zhu Yan as its titular character.
Here’s a sneak peek at master and disciple as filming has already started.