Wallace Huo: 11 Years on the Road
BQ Weekly, May 2014
“I’m a lonely person by nature”
Wallace Huo is an exception because although he has few publicity promotions and interviews, he is highly popular. After finishing all his Perfect Couple promotions, Wallace Huo went back to Hengdian to continue filming. In the last few years his filming has been intense. Often he goes from one set to the next. To him, his work is about acting. You seldom see him in other public events.
Producer = Life producer
The reason to be a producer for Perfect Couple is because he wanted to act in a comedy drama. Because of his handsome appearance producers seldom ask him to take up a comedy drama. The majority of the scripts are love and tragedy related. So he wanted to give himself a chance. After such desire, the operation of Perfect Couple came to his mind.
Wallace said: “I thought the script has a complete story. It has humour and affection. From a commercial standard point it has all the elements. So I wanted to try. As such we began: including finding a director. I worked together with the team in coming up with the theme songs for this drama.”
Wallace spoke frankly that you need both brains and brawn as a producer. But the things he cared most weren't macro things such as investment, but more related to those micro things such as moving tables, moving stages, removing trashes, fixing schedules or arranging the extras. “It’s better to call it a life producer, responsible for the moods of casts and crew members.”
Because he is an actor he cares a lot for artistes. “If any artiste worked overtime, I would explain to him/her why. To tell them it is because of the stage setting, we must finish today.” Sometimes to accommodate other artistes, he put his takes to the last.
Although it’s hard to produce a drama, Wallace still enjoys it and is excited about it. He said: “I feel everything is still unknown. I’m still searching. Of course I hope I can find a good start. I don’t know what will happen in the future. But if the audiences like my first project of course I’ll be happy. It’s my hard work after all. With praises and support from the audiences we can make a big step forward. If the audiences don’t like it much I’ll humbly accept it and work harder next time.”
Coincidently Wallace witnessed the first project of two actresses. On is Fang Bingbing’s “Snow Rouge” and the other one is Ruby Lin’s “Qing Shi Huang Fei”. He was a main cast in these two dramas. “They are smart actresses. I’ve learnt a lot from them.” We asked him what is the biggest gain from being a producer. He frankly said being in other people’s shoes. “My mindset isn’t about to just finishing my part. From the experience I’ve learn how to tribute and sacrifice. To me it’s a breakthrough.”
Although he only acted as a first time producer, Wallace’s studio has been long existed. This is also his wish. “Because relatively I like freedom. I don’t want to sign with a company. They design what I need to do. I relatively like to do things as I wish. I take up plays I prefer to do. I can work with any director and can choose any theme. I hope I can make my own decisions.”
No longer has the idol baggage
Perfect Couple also has fulfilled Wallace’s other wish: he can show his funny side. In the drama not only he was responsible to stay pretty, his cross dressing was funny. He was funny both on screen and off screen. Even old friend Tang Yan was surprised because he has become more talkative and knows how to make people laugh. Wallace said: “I've came to learn that work isn’t about making a living, it is part of a living. So I should stay happy. I only want to happily do my acting work. I used to be shy, introvert and proud. I had thin skin. Now when I’m at work I don’t care much about my image. If the script requires I can do anything. Because this is my work and so there is nothing that should be hold back. In this area I’m quite open-minded.”
Previously Wallace quite rejected people who said he’s an idol, things such as he only has a good face. But now he isn't concerned much about people’s comments. He no longer has the idol baggage. But one detail which is quite interesting is that when he was viewed as an idol he didn’t wear makeup when filming. Now he doesn’t have the idol baggage he wants to look a bit prettier. He also starts to take care of his skin and look into the mirror. Carrying a mirror with him never happened before. “Why the change?” I asked.
“I don’t know why… maybe I love myself more and respect the audience.” He felt the audience put him in a framed box before. Actually everything is possible for a person. But it takes a long time to understand your own self and to gradually prove it to the people .
The simpler the better for love affection
“I worked in Africa and especially liked Wallace’s Emerald on the Roof. From it I saw the happiness of finding someone who loves me. I was entangled between decisions at that time. Should I stay with someone who loved me or someone I loved…. Under the influence of this drama I chose the person who loved me. We got married and we’ve lived happily ever after.” The person who said this is his fan.
Although he brought a romance to a happy ending, he himself is still single. For many years he has been trying to protect his private life. He seldom talks about it publicly. This makes people even more interested in his love relationship.
“I can’t tell. I can’t guarantee. Just live by destiny. I want to do whatever I must do first. I’m not in a hurry for this.” Will he reject love?
“I won’t. It will come naturally. At the current stage I only fall in love with my scripts. I can have a lot of imagination in my work. Many fictitious conditions and stories. I can enjoy everything that happens in the plays. I think I’m happy this way.”
After taking part in many romance dramas, Wallace Huo expects in real life a simple love relationship. The girl he likes is also simple. He hopes his partner can chat with him, dine with him and can listen to him while he talks.
“It’s hard to find.” He shook his head, appearing a bit helpless. “Of course it is easy to find someone to chat with you. But to find someone who shares the same line of thinking, principles and concepts is difficult. People have different secular ideas. But our value position must be on the same page. If the value position isn’t the same, it’s hard to be friends, let alone to be partners.”
Hope to keep a private life
BQ: You seldom have interviews and promotions. Is it because you don’t have time or you are not willing to socialize with other people?
WH: Not really. After I finished a play I would see the media when it is about to air. I would introduce to people what we had filmed, what role I played. It’s only when is not work related that I seldom turned up publicly. I don’t want to expose myself too much. Because if you do you need to talk a lot and tell people what kind of a person you are. I feel strange about it. I hope to say that after each play and each character I’ll advance a step further. People will see I’m advancing. I like to interact this way with people.
BQ: Will you talk less when you need to communicate?
WH: I’m quite talkative. This is why I’m not willing to show up too much. I’m afraid I might trouble people too much. I used to be introverted and afraid of people might reject me. People found me elegant as a result of this. Actually I didn’t know how to communicate with people. I also don’t want to please people for my advantage.”
BQ: Were you like this when you were little?
WH: Always like this when I was little. Yes. I’ve never been good with inter-personal relationships.
BQ: I heard that after Swordsman you’re more willing to share with people. You’ve also become more talkative.
WH: Better than before. I don’t know why. Probably because I’m more mature I try to share with people more. But I also hope to reserve time for my private life.
BQ: Last year you went to an university for a talk show. I was completely impressed by it because in my mind you’re a quiet person.
WH: Yes. I didn’t expect it either. I quite enjoyed it this way because the feeling is quite special. I didn’t know I could share my life and work experience with the students. Because I’m an actor I can’t expose myself too much like a singer. They’re relaxed an opened. I become nervous in front of people. I didn’t know what happened that day. When I received the invitation from the university I accepted it without thinking twice. I only shared my journey of heart and some thoughts. It turned the result wasn’t bad at all. People quite accepted it.
BQ: Do you remember how long did you talk?
WH: About 2 hours. I basically seldom have such a chance. I don’t even interact much with my fans, let alone the students. I feel that’s quite meaningful. I hope after I’ve accumulated more life experience and more things from acting I can tell them new things.
BQ: Actually it can be a happy thing to open up and share with people.
WH: Yes. No one talks with me anyway in normal days. So I think it was quite a good chance to share with them.
Can I survive without a weibo account?
BQ: Do you think you’re typical Capricorn? Capricorn people generally don’t like to expose their love relationships. Also they tend to be lonely.
WH: Yes. I’m lonely by nature. I don’t have many friends. Only a few close friends. Very few. I always feel lonely. This is my personality.
BQ: Do you want to make a change?
WH: No. I quite enjoy it this way. Conceptually I think a person comes alone and goes alone. In principle I feel any person is alone. It depends on how you view this loneliness. I like to drive around myself. At work there are many people already. I spend time with over 100 people each day. It’s very noisy and confused. So in personal life I want something simple. Besides I don’t like noisiness.”
BQ: Many people have encouraged or persuade you to open a weibo, but you have refused.
WH: When dramas were about to air some producers asked me to open a weibo account to do some promotions. But I think promotions have nothing to do with opening a weibo account. I don’t understand this. They said I won’t survive if I don’t promo myself. But I don’t think so. I don’t feel like I must do something because everyone else does. Everyone has their own way of survival. I don’t have to follow everyone else’s footstep to survive. I have my own survival way.
BQ: This quite matches your independent personality. Quite like Linghu Chong, opting for freedom, right?
WH: Yes. I’m quite persistent in this. I feel many fans like me but I don’t really have to be close to them and please them every day by posting a picture of myself. It’s enough to watch my shows. No need to go that far. I’ll feel I don’t have any value any more. Do you understand? Right. It’s enough to show you my plays. I hope I can save my private life in my own space.
BQ: But I heard you also are merry when you’re with your friends.
WH: Yes, of course. I’m totally open with close friends. I make any jokes to make them laugh.
BQ: Do you often hear that after going to new set, people say that they found you hard to get along but after a while you turned out to be easy going?
WH: Yes. I don’t know why I give people a distance feeling. People who know me find me a quite funny and humorous person. I also like to laugh at myself to make people happy.
BQ: Seems like you have a sacrificial spirit?
WH: I think that isn’t bad. Not too many dare to do so. People have strong self-esteem. It won’t bother me much. Besides, it is a laugh at myself to ease the atmosphere. For instance a young actor may tell me that he is nervous. So I had an NG. He would become more relax because even I had NG why couldn’t he. People can relax this way. I hope we can create a harmonic atmosphere at work. Sometimes I would put myself down to make people feel at ease.
Wish to be an actor in the next life
BQ: To recap your career after 11 years, what will be your summary?
WH: Muddleheaded. I have been searching and still am. After 11 years I still don’t understand this industry. But I understand how to build a foundation as an actor. I still have many things to learn. I’ve accumulated some experience. I won’t panic when I face difficulties. This experience is valuable.
BQ: Right. I feel it is absolutely necessary in every stage of life. You’ll get some quality in each stage. Which stage do you like best?
WH: Strictly speaking I feel the current stage is quite good. I’m more mature. I was more naive before. I was stubborn in things I did. I didn’t care what people saw and thought about me. I’m now more thoughtful in my thinking. But I still have my ego. Probably this is my personality. It’s difficult to change. Actually my personal character is quite different from those on screen.
BQ: From your stage at 20's, what do you want to keep or carry on?
WH: I wasn’t afraid of anything at that time. I dared to take risks. Not afraid of being tired, not afraid of getting hurt, and not afraid of hard work. I wasn’t afraid of anything.
BQ: That’s why you took on seven dramas within one year?
WH: Yes. I wasn’t afraid of anything. Now I’m afraid of everything. This is quite scary.
BQ: If they ask you to film 7 dramas within one year, will you definitely say no?
WH: Definitely no. Definitely no. Even if there are really good scripts. I can only pick 3 to film each year. I wasn’t afraid of hard working at that time. Not afraid of fatigue. Could stand no personal space. But for a very long time I was extremely tired.
BQ: Right. This includes when you started your career you worked as an assistant for a show. Actually it helped you to be a producer.
WH: Yes. I’m more familiar with the working environment. I respect people. Put myself in their shoes.
BQ: If you could start all over, would you want to erase that part?
WH: I don’t want to erase it. It’s quite good actually. I don’t know what will happen in the future. But I think I’m good in this life. If I could make a choice I hope I could be an actor next life. I feel my life is more colourful. Otherwise, I’m someone without a goal. I’ve learn a lot from acting, such as my life experience. I’ve learn everything from acting, not from books. Books haven’t taught me much. All my gains have come from my work.
出品人 = 生活制片
以前霍建华会比较排斥人家说他是偶像演员，好像他只有脸蛋而已，但是现在他不会在意别人怎么评价，早就没了偶像包袱。 有一个细节挺有意思的——别人说他是偶像时，其实他拍戏连妆都不化。现在没了偶像包袱，相反他倒爱漂亮一点，也会做一些皮肤护理，拍戏前会照下镜子，以前随身带镜子这种事根本不会发生在他身上。 “为什么有这种变化？”我问。
BQ：去年的时候，你去一个大学做演讲 , 让我很刮目相看，因为在我以前的印象中，你就是那种有点闷的人。
BQ：如果给出道这 11 年做一个小结，你会怎么总结一下？
BQ：现在一年让你拍七部戏，你肯定会说 NO 吗？