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Charmaine Sheh, Joe Ma, Sherming Yiu, Winnie Shum and Ram Tseung were among the cast members from "Maiden's Vow" who gathered yesterday at the Dragon Centre in Shamshuipo for a promotional event. With Mid-Autumn festival not far off, the artistes played some kissing games and although there was a piece of plastic between them, they still put their hearts into it, especially Charmaine and Joe, who seemed particularly serious about their kiss. Afterwards, they split into teams to design a lantern before handing out mooncakes to the audience.
Charmaine was asked whether she felt Joe was a little aggressive with his kiss, but she smiles that she doesn't know, saying: "We should put our hearts into everything we do and this was just a game. There was a piece of plastic there too so it is all a healthy stunt to push up the ratings." With the show gaining a peak of 34 points, Charmaine says she is very satisfied with this because it was very hard work to film this series because she appears in almost every scene and some shoots lasted 18 hours. To see this success makes her very happy. She smiles: "I am very greedy though, so I hope that the ratings for the next part will be even higher. (Does the high ratings improve your confidence of winning an award?) It is too early to say, there are still many scenes to be aired." Joe pledged that he will allow himself to be kissed freely for five minutes in public if the ratings reach 40 points, so when Charmaine was asked what she would do, she smiled: "I will help to take photographs."
With Joe so enthusiastic with his kissing, is Charmaine worried about upsetting rumoured boyfriend Benny Chan? Charmaine immediately laughed and changed the subject, saying: "I will just be talking about 'Maiden's Vow' today. I hope the ratings will keep going up and leave the work arrangements to the company to arrange. (Benny has had complaints with his recent filming?) I have not been in Hong Kong recently as I have been in the mainland and New Zealand, so I haven't paid much attention to the news. I don't think he is late all the time as I have worked with him on two or three occsaions and he is not a person who is late. (Reports suggest he has been unwell?) I will call him and see how he is."
Talking of the news that TVB top lady Jessica Hsuan has changed to 'per-series' contract, Charmaine says: "She is still with TVB. (She has taken the top spot for so long, do you hope for a change around after she has signed a different contract?) You can't use the word 'taken', for her to be in this position is only reasonable for her experience. Maybe she has found a happy lifestyle, so she has moved towards 'per-series', that is what life is about. (Do you hope to take her place as number one?) Liza (Wang) is next! (She is at another level, surely it should be you next with your length of service?) There are many leading ladies at TVB and there should be no differentiation. We are all working for TVB and we all love acting, so it is not about status, it is about our interests."
Talking of his pledge to allow five minutes of free kissing if the ratings reach 40 points, Joe points out that this is just a kiss on the cheeks. Asked if he would allow a kiss on the lips if the girl was pretty, he laughs: "Let's be fair, I will still only let them kiss my cheek." With the good ratings, does this increase Joe's confidence about winning an award this year? He says: "I just give my best performance, everything else is down to the company to arrange. Although I have been in the top five each year for the last few years, I don't know if I will have a breakthrough this year as this is down to the audience response. I hope everyone will support me." He also adds that there are too many elements to consider about winning an award and it is not just something you can get by wishing for it. If he wins, he will be happy, if he doesn't, then it doesn't matter.
Asked if deep down he would like to win, Joe smiles: "No special desire really, although I have been at TVB for 13 years, I have not won anything so far and I will not hold any expectation. (With your time in the industry, then surely it should be your turn this year?) To be fair, it is not about where you are in the queue as to whether you win an award, it is all down to giving a good performance." However, Joe has just renewed his three year 'per-episode' contract with TVB, so with a contract in hand, then this may raise his chances somewhat.--> Translation by Emspace --> Mag scans by Bebe