A Close-Up VIEW of BYRON PANG [彭罡原]
leading actor from AMPHETAMINE.
He’s a rookie Hong Kong Actor, fresh from his much talked about controversial role in the gay-genre film AMPHETAMINE.
He’s also the latest pin-up boy with the cheeky, cherubic smile.
His name is BYRON PANG.
Watch this name, if you must.
And if you can unearth the outer layers, you’ll find that this bold actor is brimming with undeveloped potential inside.
He runs a gamut of expressions and is gesticulative.
“You can say I am an unpolished jade with a complex persona.
I’m emotional, a draw between a devil or angel, depending on my mood swings,” he says softly. ” I am presently in my mid-20s.”
But he does look a lot younger.
On screen, the pretty-boy image fits him like a glove. Yet he aspires to play the misfit.
He seeks greater challenges in acting roles.
I like to walk the line, he enthuses.
For sure, he has the smoldering look to pass off as a Korean or Japanese idol.
I am proud to be Chinese, he muses.
He has the gift of conversing in perfect Mandarin with a trace of the Taiwanese accent that is ultra perfecto.
I love martial arts, swimming, scuba diving, horse riding and and any form of active sports, he asserts.
I love singing too, he trails off.
For a fact, he’s hot.
He has self-assuring imploring, impish eyes
and a ready smile that can melt the heart of any gal.
Or guy for that matter.
“I am throwing out any emotional baggage that is toxic,
re-inventing myself and my image from now on,” he points out.
“I am leaving the past behind. Life just has to move on.”
For a fact, he has changed his Chinese characters to read[彭罡原] denoting a dragon in hibernation now rising to an explosive form of renewed energy.
He is still BYRON PANG in English context though.
“You are one of the first few to know,” he jests.
Here’s looking at you, dude!
THE “CLOSE-UP” INTERVIEW
Why did you change your Chinese name to 彭罡原 ? Is it a need for image re-invention? A new career headstart?
Yes, you can say it’s a brand new beginning. The last two years had been pretty rough and tough. There were latent family and personal problems that I have to deal with. I could not focus on my acting career. I neglected it. I was stressed, but life now has to move on.
Yes, pretty much so. To the extent that I almost headed for a mild depression. But everything’s perfectly normal now. I am leaving the past behind. I am now like a battery recharged. I am renewed, eager to face a new future.
You speak impeccable Mandarin, with a tinge of Taiwanese accent. Where did you pick this up?
Both of my parents are from mainland China. I was born and raised in Hong Kong. I learn my fluent Mandarin from my parents. I watch a lot of Taiwan dramas. I also speak Cantonese and English, of course.
What is your astrological sign?
I am a LIBRA. I am strong-willed and fiercely independent.
What have you done so far in terms of acting?
I performed a slew of TVB Cantonese dramas, none of which I am proud of. I played a cameo in the recent STORM RIDERS 2 and a lead role in the controversial AMPHETAMINE. I can still be considered as a rookie in the entertainment industry.
Tell me more about AMPHETAMINE the movie?
It’s a real difficult role. It’s kind of a demon-and-angel type. I have to run a gamut of raw emotions ranging from intense anger, rage, pain, contentment and sorrow. I played this guy who has finally discovered, an unexpected love that was doomed from the start. That is the sad character of KAFKA, a drug-addictive fallen angel. It’s perplexing to “psyche” myself for the role, as KAFKA even gets to be gang-raped in the movie. It’s my best role to date, a big challenge. I am proud of it. I give it my all.
What made you do a gay-genre movie?
And why not? I am a professional actor. I will never reject a good script.
You have no qualms about the full-frontal nudity in key scenes?
Never. As long as the script instructs and as long as I have accepted the part, nothing will ever deter me, ever. I welcome challenges. I’ll believe in art. I will sacrifice for art’s sake. But only with an excellent film director and director-of-photography.
Your co-actor is Thomas Price. How do you find working with him and sharing intimate scenes?
Things are cool and professional between us. Off screen, Thomas is a fun guy to be with.
What about Scud, the film director and screen writer?
Scud is my mentor. He took a gamble to cast me in the role of KAFKA. I have to thank him profusely for his trust in my acting ability to pull off this complex character of KAFKA. It had been a good collaboration.
You gotten some bad press in the past. Can you elaborate on this?
The Hong Kong paparazzi is notorious for digging dirt to sell their publications. There’s nothing I can really do. As an actor, I have to deal with news, regardless of good or bad. I have to take things in one stride, to be professional. Bad news is better than nothing, right? (grins)
Do you have a lot of good friends in the entertainment industry?
Some, not many. Here you are swimming with the sharks. You tend to have more competitors than real friends. The film industry is fraught with fellow hypocrites more than anywhere else. Almost everyone is wearing a mask, adopting a facade of sorts. Never really believe what you hear sometimes.
Have you ever been passed up for any role before?
I am sure all artistes face this predicament. It happened to me a few times. It’s an actor’s lot. You win some, you lose some. You get to know that, in the entertainment scene, it is not what you know, but who you really know that gets you where you are.
What is your next project?
It’s a Taiwanese musical feature called ROCK ON!
Do you believe in love and sex in a relationship?
Yes, very much so. Sex is great, but only if there’s a relationship. Nothing exists happily without a relationship. It is of supreme importance.
What is love in your point of view?
To love, respect and take care of your better half, no matter what you do or how tough the going is.
So you believe in the power of love?
Don’t you? What’s the use of all the money in the world if there’s NO real love? I am scared of this element called loneliness, to be alone to face my existence within the four walls. For sure, money cannot buy love. No way! (shrugs).
What is your motto in life?
Striving to be an honest and likable person at all times, knowing that this is a tall order. There are no perfections in this world. Treasure friends and loved ones who are here for you now, but may not be around the next time.
I hear that you are really good at Martial Arts?
Yes, I spent a good number of years learning WUSHU. I discover personal and spiritual growth though this form of martial arts. It is like the cleansing and re-awakening of my soul.
Can you describe yourself in 3 little words?
Loyal, straightforward and down-to-earth.
What else would you like to say to conclude this interview?
There are special friends out there who have helped me along my journey of learnings. A big THANK YOU to you all.
- END of INTERVIEW –
It’s insightful talking to BYRON PANG.
He’s candid about life, career and friends.
He believes in life and loving, a love without limits, a life without fears.
There’s a better tomorrow if we seek it, if we redeem ourselves.
And that is exactly what he is going to do.
“I am going to put the past behind,” he concluded. “From now
on, everything’s a new beginning.”