After Wayne Lai (黎耀祥) won Best Actor Awards for two installments of Rosy Business <巾幗梟雄>, high expectations were set for the 3rd series, No Reserve <巾幗梟雄之諜血長天>.
However, TVB management disapproved of the drama after screening a pivotal male rape scene, and demanded significant footage to be cut, reports Jayne Stars.
Wayne’s character in No Reserve suffered a terrible rape scene during his time in the army. Producer Lee Tim Sing (李添勝) already planned the scene from the beginning and intended to challenge the conservative nature of the television industry.
When TVB General Manager, Mark Lee (李寶安), found out about the controversial scene after filming had concluded, he immediately contacted Peter Au (區偉林) and Catherine Tsang (曾勵珍).
Mark Lee demanded that 15 episodes of No Reserve are to be cut from the 30-episode series, with all references to the male rape scene to be removed. Roughly $15 million HKD worth of filming would need to go to waste.
Displeased with the amount of inappropriate material in No Reserve, it is speculated that TVB will remove it from the weekday prime-time broadcast, and will show it during the weekends instead.
Faced with a less favorable airing slot, Wayne expressed he has no control over the situation.
“No, I haven’t heard anything about it, but if the company makes this decision, they’re doing it to get the best outcome. The company knows the limits. As an actor, we only need to perform well in the series.
"The decision to cut or not is up to the company. But cutting from 30 episodes to 15 will not happen since there’s only one (male rape) scene. Or maybe the series will be even more exciting after cutting 15 episodes!”
On possibly losing the TV King title this year, Wayne is not at all worried. “If the reception is good enough, people naturally like it! I’m not worried!”
On the other hand, Catherine Tsang disclosed that an actual male rape scene was not included in the drama. Since she has only watched three episodes of No Reserve, she does not know exactly how many episodes will be taken out.
“I don’t know, it could be only five episodes. Right now, we don’t even know when it’ll be aired!”