Christopher Lee has a funny story of how he landed his latest role: It came in a dream.
It wasn’t his dream but Taiwanese producer Lin Yu-Ling’s. According to Christopher, Lin had hit a wall filling the ensemble for HBO Asia's Workers, an adaptation of a best-selling novel of the same name about a group of construction workers obsessed with making it big, her follow-up project to the Golden Bell-winning series, The World Between Us.
Lin had all but one key role left to cast. Then one night she saw Christopher in her dreams. “My face somehow flashed across her mind,” the 48-year-old Malaysian actor recalls. Somehow his performance — as a troubled taxi driver — in Kelvin Tong’s 2010 thriller Kidnapper had crept into her subconscious, and…. the rest is history?
Well, yes — and no. (We’ll get to that in a bit.)
Workers arrives at a moment where’s there a flurry of discussions about the contributions by migrant workers. Even though the show is set in Taiwan, Christopher hopes that construction workers from different regions can relate to it. “When I took up this role, I felt I had this mission to help represent the workers in every aspect, including their emotions, lifestyle, dreams and aspirations,” he adds.
Fielding questions from a group of journos from Southeast Asia via Webex, Christopher lets us (in Mandarin) about his role as Ming-Qi the iron welder as well as more amusing behind-the-scenes anecdotes from the blue-collar dramedy — which also stars Yu An-Shun and Ko Shu-Yuan — premiering this Sunday (May 10) with two episodes back-to-back.