No sugar mummies for Ian Fang

The duke plays a slacker who accepts expensive gifts from Zoe Tay’s character in upcoming Channel 8 drama ‘Hero’

Ian Fang and Zoe Tay
Ian Fang and Zoe Tay
15 Jul 2016

Ian Fang and Zoe Tay

Photos: Tammi Tan
Video: Kimberly Tay

While Romeo Tan would find it flattering if he received an offer from a sugar mummy (an older woman who spends money on a younger man, usually in exchange for romantic favours), fellow duke Ian Fang says no proposition would be tempting enough to get him into such a relationship.

“I’m not fond of such a ‘bargain’ - the money is too easy (and) a person’s self-worth cannot be measured with cash,” he explained. “Of course, different people have different opinions about this, but to me, it’s not something I would do.”

His character in upcoming Channel 8 drama Hero, however, does not share this philosophy. In the show, which premieres in November and kick-starts the celebration of 35 years of local drama in 2017, the 26-year-old actor plays Zhang Wei Kang, a lazy slacker who accepts thousands of dollars’ worth of gifts from a wealthy lady (played by Zoe Tay in a cameo appearance).

Despite his stand on kept man, Ian was delighted to portray one to the established Ah Jie on screen. “When the producers asked if there was anyone I wanted to be my sugar mummy, I said (Zoe) without thinking too much about it, and they said they would try and ask her,” he recalled. Luckily for him, Zoe accepted the role.

Ian gives us a cheeky face while Zoe's attention is elsewhere
Ian gives us a cheeky face while Zoe's attention is elsewhere
15 Jul 2016

Ian gives us a cheeky face while Zoe's attention is elsewhere

Toggle had the chance to catch the filming of their characters’ first encounter in a nightclub yesterday. In the scene, Ian approaches Zoe, who is sitting at the bar and getting drunk on shots. After pouring her broken heart out to him, she initiates an intimate wefie - complete with his arms around her, and her hand tenderly touching his cheek.

When asked if it was awkward getting into such an affectionate position with the Queen of Caldecott Hill herself, Ian admitted that he was a little shy. However, thanks to the rapport they built while filming The Dream Makers and The Dream Makers 2, in which they play aunt and nephew, it wasn’t an uncomfortable experience. In fact, Ian quipped that he’s close enough to Zoe to be “disrespectful” by teasing and behaving informally around her.

Lest there be any misunderstanding about the younger artiste’s horrible-sounding attitude towards his senior, Zoe explained, “It’s not that he’s disrespectful, he’s just very comfortable around me.” The camaraderie proved to be useful during the bar flirtation scene: “We didn’t need to waste time warming up to each other.”

Zoe Tay and Guo Liang
Zoe Tay and Guo Liang
15 Jul 2016

Zoe Tay and Guo Liang

Unfortunately for Wei Kang, his sugar mummy happens to be a married woman - and her husband (played by Guo Liang) learns of the affair and confronts him and his older sister Wei Xiong (played by Jesseca Liu, whose relationship with Jeremy Chan was also confirmed yesterday).

In our short interview with Guo Liang during the filming of the intense scene (which involved yelling, table-banging and Ian getting slapped by Jesseca multiple times), the veteran host told us that although it was only his second time sharing a scene with Zoe and their first time playing a married couple, it was “extremely comfortable” working with her “because she doesn't say anything" in the scene.

But her lack of lines did not stop him from noticing her professionalism. “Zoe is a very experienced actor,” he praised. “So she’s able to bring something to the table that goes beyond the script.”

Zoe's character gets emotional (and a little drunk) at the bar
Zoe's character gets emotional (and a little drunk) at the bar
15 Jul 2016

Zoe's character gets emotional (and a little drunk) at the bar

Zoe's and Ian's characters get flirty with each other at the bar
Zoe's and Ian's characters get flirty with each other at the bar
15 Jul 2016

Zoe's and Ian's characters get flirty with each other at the bar

Zoe goes from Queen of Caldecott Hill to the queen of the selfie pout
Zoe goes from Queen of Caldecott Hill to the queen of the selfie pout
15 Jul 2016

Zoe goes from Queen of Caldecott Hill to the queen of the selfie pout

Zoe and Ian take a
Zoe and Ian take a "normal" wefie with Zoe's own phone
15 Jul 2016

Zoe and Ian take a "normal" wefie with Zoe's own phone

Jesseca was bombarded with questions about her newly-unveiled relationship
Jesseca was bombarded with questions about her newly-unveiled relationship
15 Jul 2016

Jesseca was bombarded with questions about her newly-unveiled relationship

Jesseca's character learns that her little brother has a sugar mummy
Jesseca's character learns that her little brother has a sugar mummy
15 Jul 2016

Jesseca's character learns that her little brother has a sugar mummy

Despite the tense scene, Jesseca could not help but crack up a couple of times on set
Despite the tense scene, Jesseca could not help but crack up a couple of times on set
15 Jul 2016

Despite the tense scene, Jesseca could not help but crack up a couple of times on set

Guo Liang's character accuses Ian's character of cheating his wife of her money
Guo Liang's character accuses Ian's character of cheating his wife of her money
15 Jul 2016

Guo Liang's character accuses Ian's character of cheating his wife of her money

Guo Liang
Guo Liang
15 Jul 2016

Guo Liang

Hero debuts November 29, 9pm on Channel 8.

WATCH: Ian Fang has no respect for Zoe Tay?

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