Taiwanese drama makers will never learn to give their dramas decent titles, will they? What with this and the also-upcoming Drunken to Love You, which sounds as if they’re trying to imply that one of the leads has to get drunk in order to love the other…
Material Queen is a 20-episode romance that was originally set to star Jerry Yan, but he’s been replaced by fellow F4 alumn Vanness Wu. Wu reunites with the producer and director of last year’s hit Autumn’s Concerto, who are both also working on this drama. This will be the first drama sponsored by Next Media, which launched in December 2010. The drama is unusually high-budget, costing a rumored NT$6 million per episode, almost three times the average drama episode. It’s rumored that $80,000 was spent to entice award-winning Sex and the City stylist Patricia Field to come on board (she designed the dress in the picture above). The drama was partially filmed in Paris.
Material Queen stars Vanness Wu and Lynn Xiong (otherwise known as Lynn Hung). Hung is a Chinese model based in Hong Kong, and while this is her first drama role, she’s appeared in a number of films before.
Xiong plays an orphan who grows up in poverty. Abandoned by her parents and forced to fight her way up, she becomes a successful model, but also becomes obsessed with money. She’ll do anything to keep herself out of the gutter, including becoming involved with a middle-aged, rich businessman. While in Paris for a fashion show, she meets a poor, kind-hearted music student (Wu), and the two fall in love. After a one night stand, they are separated however.
Vanness Wu is growing out his hair and taking French and violin lessons in order to act his part as a poor but talented music student. He has said that he turned down a role in a Russell Crowe film because of scheduling conflicts with this drama…to which all I can say is – good for him?
Material Queen should finish filming in February and air in March.