Before he could even go take a look the next day, Yuan Ye had already bumped into He Han's agent that same night.
After Fang Shaoyi and Ji Xiaotao went back downstairs, Yuan Ye looked over the script for the next day and came up with an idea. He put on his shoes and went downstairs to find the director. He often went to the director's room and didn't think much of it. When he knocked on the door, the assistant director opened it and he asked, "Are you guys busy, leader?"
The assistant director said to him, "What's up? Do you need something, Little Yuan?"
"Ah, I didn't..." Yuan Ye had originally intended to leave, but halfway through his sentence, he looked up and saw that He Han's agent was also inside, staring at him.
His gaze made Yuan Ye uncomfortable, so he smiled and said, "I wanted to talk to the director about tomorrow's scenes. I have some ideas."
He raised his voice a little and said, "I'm coming in, Director?"
Then he went straight in and greeted the agent, "You're here?"
Yuan Ye had been on the set for a long time, and during the past few days of the Chinese New Year, he had been eating with them every day. The director and assistant director didn't treat him like an outsider. Jiang Linchuan pointed to the sofa next to him, indicating that he should sit down.
Yuan Ye sat down and said with a smile, "You guys talk first, and then I'll share my ideas."
As soon as he sat down, the agent stopped talking and smiled at the director, saying, "Let's leave it at that for now. You're busy, so take your time to think about what we discussed earlier. I'll wait for your answer."
The director didn't nod or shake his head, so the agent stood up and added, "I hope you can give us a chance."
Yuan Ye looked at him and felt a stir in his heart. He was always quick-witted and had fast reactions, so he immediately sensed that something was off. He asked, "What kind of chance do you want?"
The other person smiled and said to Yuan Ye, "Don't worry about the matters between me and the director, Yuan Ye. It's not your concern."
Sitting on the sofa, Yuan Ye leaned his arms on his knees and lowered his head for a moment. Then he rubbed his head and suddenly laughed, asking, "You guys aren't trying to come back, are you...haven't had enough of shooting this film yet?"
As soon as Yuan Ye finished speaking, he could tell from the other person's expression that he had hit the nail on the head. Yuan Ye cursed inwardly and continued in his head-down, head-rubbing posture, slowly saying, "Is that so? Then how can you say it has nothing to do with me? If you want to change the script, you have to go through me at least."
Yuan Ye put down his hand and stared at him, asking, "How do you want to change it?"
The director remained silent, sitting aside and drinking tea. The assistant director also remained silent. Yuan Ye then asked him again, "Your schedule was so precious, how could you have time to come back now? Surely that's not possible."
The fire in Yuan Ye's heart had been burning for some time now, and he hadn't had a chance to let it out. When he saw that they wanted to come back and change the scenes, he couldn't help but feel a bit amused.
How worthless could their faces be? He spoke his mind, and the fake smiles on the agent's face couldn't hold up anymore. Jiang Linchuan called out to him, "Little Yuan."
"Yeah, what's up?" Yuan Ye responded, but he didn't take his eyes off the person in front of him. He asked, "What do you want to change? Add more scenes? A few more minutes?"
He Han is from Taiwan, but his agent is a seasoned veteran from the mainland. Yuan Ye after all did not have much status in the entertainment industry, and didn't have much background, he and Fang Shaoyi's relationship was still not quite there yet. And since they dared to come back here, it's clear that they are not afraid of offending Fang Shaoyi.
Yuan Ye kept pressing him with every word, but the agent didn't bother with the fake politeness and just gave a cold laugh before saying, "We'll have to ask the investors about that. They want to add a male lead, so even if our schedule is busy, we'll have to make time."
He looked at Yuan Ye with a slight smile at the corner of his eye and continued, "As for how to add to the script and for how long, I'm afraid I can't tell you. You didn't write the script, so you can't make any major changes. President Liu has already talked to the screenwriter, Leng-laoshi, about it. If you want to ask how to change it, why don't you ask the higher-ups?"
Jiang Linchuan cleared his throat and said to the agent, "You go back first and wait for my message."
"No," Yuan Ye was now laughing completely, looking at this and that, and asked, "Who can give me an explanation? What does it mean by 'adding a male lead'? Having two male leads?"
"Little Yuan, nothing is set yet, let's discuss it again." The assistant director gave Yuan Ye a warning look, afraid that he would speak too rashly.
"How do you want to discuss it?" Yuan Ye raised his eyebrows, lightly scratching his finger on his pants. There was a knock on the door, and the assistant director went to open it. Yuan Ye looked at the agent and continued, "With your actor's mediocre skills, you want to become a double male lead?"
"What are we talking about?" Yuan Ye looked up at the sound of a voice and saw Fang Shaoyi walking in. Fang Shaoyi had already heard the second half of what he said as he entered the room and gave him a glance before walking over to stand next to the sofa where he was sitting.
"Shaoyi, the two of you should go back first, we'll talk about it tomorrow," the assistant director said to Fang Shaoyi.
"No need," Yuan Ye's face had darkened by now and he shook his head, "I want to hear what it means to have two male leads."
This really hit a nerve with Yuan Ye. The agent's mention of "two male leads" had set him off. He had always been annoyed by the shady dealings in the entertainment industry, especially that actor from Taiwan who had no acting skills and relied on wealthy backers to get ahead. He had rushed them to finish filming and yet now they were saying that he was going to be a male lead alongside Fang Shaoyi? It was ridiculous.
The director never expressed his opinion, which basically meant he agreed.
Yuan Ye was getting angry, his eyelids twitching as he pointed to the scripts he had brought over to the coffee table. "We'll shoot it the way we agreed to in the contract. Two male leads? Impossible. You need to make sure you can handle the meat before you eat it. Let me be blunt, your actor's skills are better suited for idol dramas. You can't even make it as the male lead in a romance drama, let alone the second or third male lead."
"Yuan Ye," Fang Shaoyi spoke up, whispering beside him. "Don't lose your temper."
"I'm not losing it, I'm just telling the truth," Yuan Ye turned to the agent. "You're relying on the power of others. How long can your actor rely on the backing of their wealthy sponsors? Today they have power, but when they leave, he'll be left high and dry."
That was a harsh thing to say, and Fang Shaoyi reached out and pressed his hand on Yuan Ye's back. He furrowed his brow and spoke in a deep voice, "Yuan Ye."
Yuan Ye stood up and said, "My brother has a good temper, but I don't. I'm just a commoner from the mountains with no manners."
He finished speaking and turned to look at the director, probably with more to say, but Fang Shaoyi didn't give him the chance to speak. He just pulled him away. Before leaving, Fang Shaoyi nodded to the director and assistant director, then glanced at the agent standing next to him and said lightly, "If you have something to say, say it later to me."
Fang Shaoyi brought Yuan Ye back to his room. Yuan Ye frowned and looked unhappy, "Why did you pull me away? I hadn't finished speaking yet."
"What else do you want to say?" Fang Shaoyi pushed him onto the sofa and ruffled his hair. "If you keep talking, you'll even offend the director."
"The director isn't being fair about this," Yuan Ye's anger hadn't subsided and he spoke harshly. "Why did you stop me from speaking?"
Fang Shaoyi poured him a glass of water, his own expression not looking too good. But he didn't say anything to further provoke Yuan Ye and simply said, "Next time, call me if you need help. Don't go and confront anyone alone."
"I happened to be there at the time. I couldn't just call you and wait. Besides, even if I did call you, you wouldn't let me speak," Yuan Ye didn't drink the water and lit a cigarette instead. "I've been wanting to speak up against them for a while now. If I don't speak now, I'll explode."
Fang Shaoyi let out a sigh and said to Yuan Ye, who was sitting next to him, "Then just let it all out with me."
Yuan Ye couldn't find the words to say at him, and even if he did, it wouldn't make a difference. Fang Shaoyi was a moderate person, or rather, he just didn't care. He didn't lack roles or screen time, and he didn't care who had more or less scenes in a particular drama. He probably wouldn't strongly oppose it even if he knew about it, as it would be beneath him to compete with these small-time actors for roles.
But Yuan Ye was different. If something he cared about was at stake, he wouldn't turn a blind eye. There were too many shady things in the entertainment industry, where people would act respectful to your face but secretly hold grudges. They would jump at any chance to step on others and show off their superiority.
Last time when Fang Shaoyi was feeling a terrible headache, they were already celebrating in their hearts. This was the kind of bastard that Yuan Ye despised, the kind that couldn't be seen in public.
Actually, when Fang Shaoyi went to the director's room, he didn't know that Yuan Ye was there. He didn't mention it when he was in Yuan Ye's room earlier, afraid that Yuan Ye would explode if he heard about it. He just came to ask the director about it.
But he didn't expect that Yuan Ye was already exploding inside. When he was angry, he didn't care about anyone and was very arrogant.
Later, when Yuan Ye was about to go upstairs, Fang Shaoyi put his arm on his shoulder and whispered to him, "Don't be angry, why bother getting angry with them?"
"Okay," Yuan Ye agreed, then turned back and asked, "Did I make things difficult for you?"
"No, not at all," Fang Shaoyi said seriously to Yuan Ye. "I just don't want you to get involved with anyone who might not be as straightforward as you are. You speak your mind, but not everyone does. Let me handle any issues that arise, or let the company handle them."
Yuan Ye knew this already and smiled, shaking his head. "I'm not afraid of that. I'll do as I please."
"I can't bear that," Fang Shaoyi said, pulling on his earlobe with a hint of helplessness. "Control your temper a little."
Yuan Ye opened his mouth to respond, but ultimately nodded silently, not saying anything else.
In fact, Yuan Ye had already tempered his temper quite a bit. When He Han's side was messing around for so many days, he didn't say a word.
When he was with Fang Shaoyi, Yuan Ye tried to be more like him and not do anything that could cause trouble for Fang Shaoyi. But sometimes, like today, he just couldn't control himself.
No matter how many years passed, Yuan Ye could never fit into this circle. He never liked the rules and social norms here, and he couldn't understand them. He preferred to speak his mind and be upfront about things, but it seemed like you couldn't be a part of this world without getting involved in some shady business.