[New Wave. 2]Interview with ViuTV Mike: Why is “Director Checkered” struggling to fight on TV? | Position report

This article is the second chapter of “New Wave” on the topic of “Position”. If you are interested, please read the first chapter:Sweet potato eggplant: A family under 30 years old, chasing dreams and growing up on the same boat

This week, Liu Nuoheng (Mike) finally put aside the work rhythm of “Oh, I’m going to kill you, so I’m so sorry.” He doesn’t need to cut the film late and cut it to 5 in the morning (then sleep for two or three hours and then rework). , You can start the holiday.

ViuTV’s “Error Zifei Project” has been broadcast for more than a week, and the craze seems to have not passed. Incorporated into the Facebook group “The checkered mike director should definitely have a support club”, some people are listening to all the songs of Error since his debut, and some people are reviewing “Huajie Error Tour”, “Beautiful Outing Tour”, “Ocean Man”-only Because this is the previous work of “Unlimited OT Editing Group”.

For many years, Hong Kong audiences have been accustomed to chasing stars in front of the stage and seldom care about behind-the-scenes. Especially when it comes to TV production, Roller is so busy at the end that few people pay attention to it. However, in this wave of “Self-Fat”, it seems that it is not Error’s 193 or Bao Qi that has gained the fastest popularity, but the team behind the production of the show. Among them, the director Mike, who has “beat the frame” every time he appears, is the most familiar. Personal Instagram accounts have attracted more than 120,000 followers.

Mike Liu Nuoheng. When posing this pose and taking a photo, he said, “The violent people are sitting here!”

Mike actually still has to work during his vacation. As some episodes of the show have an extended version, which will be released on the Internet later, he has spontaneously returned to the TV station to cut the film these days and nights. In the daytime, he can finally spare some time to do his beloved sports, such as rock climbing and gym.

What is different from the past is that now he will be recognized by many people when he is playing rock climbing, and he will be asked to take a photo. “It’s so embarrassing. I am a little different from what you usually see when watching the show. I’m slow and hot…”

***

Dream: Eco Photographer

It is said that many viewers are curious about the true face of the director’s checkered pattern.

When I met in Saigon on the day of the visit, Mike’s appearance was not much different from that of the average 26-year-old — wearing a dark T-shirt and shorts with a Rick and Morty doll, a cap on his head, a pair of black-rimmed glasses on the bridge of his nose, and his face. Some beards, but also a few acne, one of them is covered with an acne patch.

We first made an appointment at a cafe by the sea to chat, and then took a 10-minute ride to a place called “Orange River” in Beitan Chung to take pictures. The location was suggested by Mike, and he was here to shoot the scene of Bao Qi practicing Pian Shizi before in “Self-Fit”.

One part of “Error Self-fertilization Project” was practiced by Bao Qi, and Mike also received coaching. On the day of the interview, he filmed a few times, probably within ten times, and once performed better, but the reporter and photographer just missed it. He shouted, “Ah! So far! Go to the side!”

When I got out of the car and moved along the road, it was noon and the temperature was 35 degrees. My colleagues in the same industry couldn’t help yelling, “Wow! It’s so hot!” Layers of heat evaporate from the green road. Along the way, Mike was no stranger. He just raised his phone, took a picture to the sky, and uploaded it to the IG story.

He liked nature since he was a child.

When he was in middle school, Mike loved watching animal documentaries and wanted to be an ecological photographer of National Geographic. After reading the high diploma, I was determined to pursue my dreams. I saw Ocean Park hired an aquarium trainee and immediately sent a CV but received no response. Then somehow, I went to work as a veterinary assistant, “I’m the girl next to the veterinarian, but I’m It’s a boy…so low-handed, responsible for frightening excrement and urine.” Although it was related to animals, it took three months to feel that “it seems not right” and left the job.

Soon, the boy finally waited to hire a program assistant on the National Geographic channel, but the entry requirements stated that he must have a college degree. Mike did not want to, so he immediately applied for a part-time degree, and then planned to ask him to find a job related to production. , While working part-time to accumulate experience, while studying to fill up CV, moving towards dreams.

Mike Liu

I happened to see Now TV ask the Assistant Director (PA), which was just what he wanted: “Now TV is doing something big and big, while producing…” He smirked, “Isn’t Zhong the best stepping stone?” But The teenager is too young, so I missed one thing: It turned out that ViuTV was preparing to launch.

After seeing the completion (it’s just seeing sister Hua) was hired, he started to work immediately the next day. At that time, the live-action show “Honey D’s Honey” was about to start filming. His first task was to go to a lingerie shop to shoot props for Zhang Luo. “He hasn’t done it before, I have to do it.” Since then, he has stepped into the TV scene. . “Follow it and do it, don’t be careful.” He smiled bitterly.

“I can’t fully estimate how busy (on TV) is.”

This is his starting point in the TV station. He was 21 years old.

In the first episode of “Saving Honey”, Mike’s name appeared on TV for the first time.

***

Real Sao: Bold and Sensual

Now Mike, who has become popular with variety shows, recently many people have been excited to mention Korean “Running Man”, “Infinite Challenge”, Taiwan “Mu Yao Si Chao Wan” (producers also play checkered), but he laughed and said that as a director In fact, I have “not much connotation,” and I haven’t watched none of these programs. “After this show, maybe I need to watch a lot of different types of variety shows. I am scared to be like myself, there are some who do well and who are not doing well.”

When he was growing up, his taste for watching TV was similar to that of ordinary Hong Kong youngsters. His favorite cartoon film “Fullmetal Alchemist” (“It seems to be so cool to watch the adult world”), the documentary first recommended “People” “In the Wild” (“When the people of the house and enterprises returned to the mainland, they would specially tell him to buy a lot of old and return to see”), even the wireless drama “Storm of Feelings”, he chased and buried a copy back then, “True It’s so profound… “Where is Lin Feng’s point to listen to the meeting? Wow, how miserable Chen Hao!””

Yubi laughed: “Exposure to the strange taste!”

The teenager Mike joined “ViuTV” for the first time, and he was about to get in touch with the production of variety shows and live-action shows, but for a while, he underestimated this type of show: “I tried to go out with crew to shoot drama before, set the camera, and the lights went up again. It must be so pretty…” On the other hand, in his eyes, it seems to be “seeking a DV and GoPro shoot”, and it seems difficult to be elegant.

ViuTV has been focusing on live entertainment since its inception. As an employee, Mike started with “Saving Honey” and successively participated in the production of different live shows. A set of ideas for this type of show has gradually formed, and his skills have gradually been completed. Today, “Self-Fat” has become a phenomenon, and he admits that his style does not fall from the sky, but has traces.

For example, bold.

Mike said that the most influential program in the past five years must be “Late Blown: Real PK”. At that time, he was still a PA, and he had to conceive, prepare, and test the punishments and challenges to be executed in the show every week. The show was known for its bold style, and the punishments naturally surpassed his bottom line at the time. “Let me tell you the most extreme example…” Once the punishment was to put your hands and feet into a plastic bag full of stubborn fresh-keeping, seal them with adhesive tape, and then you had to personally beat them to death and explode them. Mike, the “tester”, was originally afraid of dying, but after the test bite the bullet, the situation changed and the whole person changed, “I really feel that there are people who are leaving me, starting from today. It becomes the second person.”

Screenshot of Episode 10 of “True PK”

In another episode, during the show, Mike was preparing props. The producer urged him to put Xun Ding into a few bottles and hand it over to the host. But the open clamp disappeared. TV production was racing against time, so Mike had to hurriedly reach out to fill the bottle. Transported by bare hands in the dying plate. “I will say it one more time. I think I am shocked.” He smiled bitterly inhumanely. “”True PK” I think about the program that affects my life, really.”

It affects his life, not only because he is no longer afraid of Xunzhu since then, but also because he has been exposed to a lot of crazy ideas and discovered that these crazy ideas can also be applied on TV. So when he was officially in charge of “Sister Hua’s Error Tour”, he also tried to continue to practice crazy, “I am called an “unusual travel show”. In short, everything will try to hit your bottom line.”

But making TV is not the same as playing online creation. It has to be open to the public and there are rules to follow. The obsessive line practice often offends the conservative group and causes internal and external pressure. For example, “True PK” received many complaints from viewers that year. The Communications Bureau ruled that the complaint was established and issued strong persuasion to ViuTV for the first time. Another example is “Self-Fat”. After the program was released, some people criticized “vulgar”, “indecent” and even Shelling a real poo “Li Beng Le Bad”.

Mike described that he has always felt and knew the existence of these opposing voices, but as a creator, he didn’t pay much attention to it. “Because I know that I am really close to the sidelines, that is, I am not to serve the most popular audiences, but I hope to bring some sidelines to the sidelines. This is my creative philosophy all the time. For the audience to have a new impact.”

Image source: Agent L instagram (ig: alfred_cho)

In addition to being bold, another feature of Mike and his team’s works is that it can provoke real emotions and make the audience laugh and shout.

When he entered the industry, he had underestimated real people’s show. After five years of participating in different productions, he gradually discovered that real people’s show also has its value and charm, no less than movies and dramas. “Real people show many aspects of “people”, and what kind of things will definitely be true. Even if the film is adapted from real people, it is actually performed by actors, but real people show you directly. , The individual is really shouting because of this, and it’s really because of being happy.”

He can’t remember the stupid pig jumping section of “Sister Hua Error”, Bao Qi struggled on the bridge for a long time, crying to the point of collapse, and did not dare to jump off. “I thought it was special when I was filming, but when I went to cut it, I started to feel… He just shouted, not the script at all.” Since then, I changed my opinion of real people, “It turns out that you were shooting It’s all good, there is always a way to put some good emotions into it, and make things so rich. It’s not just an ordinary insectivorous show, ordinary jackass.”

This sensibility has repeatedly appeared in the two seasons of “Hua Sister Error Tour”, “Beauty Outing”, and “The Man in the Sea”, and it has become one of the most attractive viewers of “Self-Fat” in recent days-for example, Bao Qi under the arrangement of the program group Low-key learning to play shaking, smashing, and playing guitar, and finally wept sincerely in front of the camera, thanking the team behind the scenes for their support, which made many people shout “moved” and “seeing to shout.”

Bao Qi embraces Mike (picture source: screenshot of “Zifei”)

***

Heterogeneity: Team and Innovation

But the process has not been smooth sailing.

Mike remembers that for a while he thought about giving up. At that time, he was still a PA. He was at the bottom of the power structure of the TV station. After hard work, he felt that he seemed a little out of place with other colleagues. “Something seems to be a strange existence.” How strange? Take film editing as an example. Every time he takes over work from a colleague, he always likes to recycle and reuse the material that the other party has given up, even as a treasure. Huh?”

“It’s strange, I feel so different.”

For example, when he was in charge of editing the program, the footage of individual contestants chatting and laughing with others before the game was useless to many people, but his eyes were shining, “It’s a little bit smaller. , You can highlight that person’s character as well as fun and interesting content.” Consciously different from others, coupled with a busy part-time study (remember his ideal eco photographer? As a result, he deferred for two years. He just finished his degree), he thought about leaving.

However, she was retained by the then producer Hua Jie and was promoted to director. “I think the biggest reason why I was promoted to be a director is to see that my cuts are different from others.” He decided to stay. At that time, there was also a young man’s calculation in his heart. “Even if I leave, if I pick up a director title, it seems to be helpful to the job…” After that, he started to have some opportunities to create creation, and it became more and more difficult. (The content of the lyrics of the theme song of “Self-Fit” is all true), but it is also more and more enjoyable. “Don’t be careful again, just do it and stay home.”

Unrestricted OT Editor Group (picture source: Mike ig: soaplau)

Before the interview, I asked friends who had worked with Mike. The other party described that, compared with other behind-the-scenes TV stations, Mike’s work has two characteristics. One is the special emphasis on teamwork-in a streamlined TV production system, this is by no means inevitable.

Mike recalled that the name of “Unlimited OT Editing Group” began with “Sister Hua Error Tour”, which was originally designed to purely satisfy the visual design of the program. “At that time, I thought it was like Japan, and the beginning of Japanese programs usually says 乜乜乜, I He originally wrote that ViuTV provided it, and felt that it was “good”, so Ahui (screenwriter) made a name with a Japanese feel, “Unlimited OT Editing Group”.” He added, “At that time, we became OT and O exploded T After the second season of “Hua Sister Error Tour” was filmed, the design remained the same, and this title was logically retained. After the show, although the team is not exactly the same every time, it has become the collective name for the people behind the scenes, which looks like the audience. “Eggs”.

He confessed that for a while, there was a little arrogance. He once thought that being a director was responsible for everything, but after experiencing the first two shows (two seasons of “Error Tour”), he found out all the way, “It’s not that there is nothing in the same world. Maybe I can do it myself. I can’t write the draft. When buying props, I have to take care of the shooting and I can’t buy it. When I do art, I have to spend the next day shooting things, but I can’t do it myself.” So he realized: “ Shooting is something that a lot of people work together to do. As a team to shoot, yes but no individual, this time the show is 80 minutes, and no one of my friends can hold it. Even if it is the sister of the floor, the ordinary props guy, and the PA. Nothing means nothing, so don’t go to this height.”

“Sister Hua Error Tour 2”. Image source: Agent L instagram (ig: alfred_cho)

Mike advocates “happy photography”, which has gradually become his team culture. “Everyone, work together to do something, hoping to make it worthwhile… I don’t want to work hard, and no one is watching. Everyone seems to know what to do and do not want to have a strange feeling.” In the 9th episode of “Beauty Outing” and “The Man from the Sea” and the 11th episode of “Self-Fat”, he used behind-the-scenes highlights to show the audience the laughs and tears of the team Behind the Scene. These scenes have also become a way to maintain the team.

“Although (behind the scenes of the TV) everyone predicts that no one will be able to see it, I am convinced that everyone wants in their hearts that what they do will be seen.”

That’s what he said, but he also admitted that the original behind-the-scenes story was only due to a common accident in the TV production process: “It’s not wrong, it’s because I didn’t shoot enough! Don’t make a lot of it, let’s put it in one episode. It’s a making of.” It’s a bit hard-wired, and I heard the company’s internal comments, but the audience’s response to the show’s street scenes was surprisingly good, “It turns out that everyone likes to see it.” He saw the value of the behind-the-scenes story as a show effect. So I will try to do the same thing in later shows, and even do more and more. For example, “Self-fat” has many links from behind the scenes, and there is even a white dolphin session that purely satisfies the desire of “self-fat” behind the scenes.

Image source: Agent L instagram (ig: alfred_cho)

Mike emphasized that this is by no means an earth-shattering idea, but they happen to seize the opportunity, grasp it, and then evolve it into their own style. “Of course I am glad that everyone (behind the scenes) is an interesting person. I don’t think I can do all of them. I was so happy when I was shooting.”

Some people also criticized them for “being addicted to the camera,” and even “being out of position” behind the scenes.

He expressed his understanding and didn’t mind these criticisms. He only explained repeatedly that these arrangements were derived from “viewers’ favorites,” which was a consideration of the effectiveness of the program. “And the family is called Duo Ren, pay attention, I am not happy? It is to be happy, so it means that the representative will be more and more people to watch.” Just as Day 1 became a “checkered director”, Mike said, just to hide himself It’s embarrassing and covering up facial expressions can also “make me personally shameless and bold enough to make bold and small effects on the show.” As a result, it becomes a role setting.

Really never thought that this would make yourself more prominent? “Not at all.” He smiled, “I don’t know if I will feel it, but the phenomenon of a lot of people follow is something I planned to do-but I don’t know.”

Mike Liu

***

Original intention: just for pleasure in suffering

People who have worked with Mike say that another unique feature of him is that he insists on innovation, “make new things every time he clicks.” Why is this also a feature? Although the TV station mainly focuses on creativity, the real body is also a big cultural factory. It is obviously not an easy task for the gears of the machine to take a new trajectory.

When many creators are unwilling to make bold attempts and only dare to play safe cards, Mike describes the “unrestricted” team members as mostly young people who tend to “try it first, count it first” anyway. Although his bosses had known that his group was unwilling to keep repeating works, he always believed that if he wanted to practice innovation, he had to fight for everything on his own.

Like “Error Tour”, the second season is about to start in a very short time. He can only think about “How can I put a new one in?” Also like “Self-Fat”, Mike didn’t want to work with Error anymore. ” It’s because everyone’s tacit understanding is good, and it’s like staying in the comfort zone.” But this is the framework set above, large or small, and sometimes even narrowed, but he can only do his best and create new ideas in it. The beginning of an episode imitates “Evangelion” (EVA). The audience may not know what they are watching after watching for six or seven minutes. But I don’t know that there is a voice in my heart, “Hey, go ahead, at least I want to do it myself”, so let’s go.”

The screenwriter Ah Hui told The Position that EVA is a work that he and Mike admire very much. As soon as Mike proposed this direction, he immediately agreed, and then began to experiment with writing part of the content in the local context. Everyone was satisfied with the results. This direction was finalized, and the whole set of creation was perfected with this set of aesthetic guidelines.

Screenwriter Mai Kehui (picture source: Ahui ig: faivoivoid)

Mike emphasized: “You have to be willing to try, (the work) comes out first.”

Another example is the MV of the Bozou Race in the fifth episode. The scene shows “losing control”, and some people questioned too much behind the scenes. Mike thinks that by cutting all the “too much” out of the street, the audience can enjoy it. “Because I haven’t watched it, I’m almost certain that no one will cut it.” He even thinks that such an innovative work, even in the end People who go out on the street don’t like it, “I’ll be happy when I think about it. At least there’s something new to take out.”

For the audience, it is fresher and more shocking. The theater in the last section of the last episode not only pays tribute to “Neon Genesis Evangelion” from the beginning and the end, but also embarks on a speculative journey to the audience with a flow of consciousness: why entertainment? What about TV?

Mike repeatedly emphasized that “Fat” is an upsurge generated by the right time and place. It was released one or two years earlier, and it will definitely not get such a response. “Because at that time, it’s considered to be some good times.” He remembers the days when “Error Tour” was filmed in 2019. “It’s not good to say (show) out of the street. When we filmed, the atmosphere was so weird.”

《Error self-fertilization project》 After all (Viutv 截圖)

What about entertainment?

“I have been thinking about the programs since 2019, and we hope to achieve that, that is, the important value of the program is to make fun in hardship. You are a little bit happy in this idiotic line of society. It’s what we want to do.”

For a while, he yearned to work in a foreign country. After all, the ecological environment of foreign countries could not be matched by Hong Kong. But now Mike’s mentality has changed a little: “I really want to use the identity of a Hong Konger and continue to do local creative work. If you want to talk to others, it’s a good old-fashioned, Hong Kong people can do it.”

Why is TV?

After spending five years at the TV station, Mike also admitted during the interview that he has always felt that now is the era dominated by social media, “TV collection should really be a matter of time.” Under this wave, many viewers have regained their old love with TV. Teaching him was a little surprised. “I used to shoot “Error Tour”, I used to be the main focus of the post-natal watching. Later, I found out that many of the people who have been around for many years are watching tight…” This time “Self-Fat” has pushed this phenomenon to its fullest. “The TV is called I licked the two groups of people to watch, and pulled some people who were watching TV closely and not watching TV back to the side.”

At the age of 26, he sometimes feels that working in the same place for 5 years is already a long time. He also thinks of the unreachable dream of an ecological photographer. Sometimes he feels that it doesn’t matter and can continue. He said several times that the current state of doing TV is “struggling”-a little bit pressure, a little hard, but there are still many different types of things at the moment, such as dramas, such as real-life dramas on other subjects, he wants to challenge.

“I am so happy with this company. I discovered that I have a lot of other things I want to do.” Just as I was determined to shoot natural ecology, I mistakenly became a variety show director.

“Just try to be scared… while Zhong has a chance to try.”

Mike loves sports and is known for being strong. The scenes of him working topless in the behind-the-scenes footages often appear as one of the focus of the audience. On the day of the visit, the weather was very hot, and colleagues rushed to ask Mike whether he would remove his shirt. He was a bit shy, but he was removed in the end. During this photo, he kept yelling: “It seems strange!”

Text/A Guo, Chen Zijun
Oi Yan Chan

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