Chapter 796: The cameras start rolling for A Bite of China!
Translator: Legge Editor: Legge
The next day at work.
News of the matter started spreading internally at Central TV. Many of the Central TV staff who came to work were chatting privately about the matter which they had heard from their friends or seen in the media.
"Hey, have you heard? Zhang Ye got his new show approved by Yan Tianfei the very same day he assumed his new duties at Department 14 yesterday. I heard that Yan Tianfei has established a program team and specially set aside an office area for Zhang Ye and his team. He even borrowed HD equipment from everywhere and allocated a production budget to him. It seems that the cameras will start rolling soon for the new documentary that Zhang Ye's team is going to make. Central TV Department 1 had the intention to freeze Zhang Ye, but Department 14 doesn't care about this. It looks like we'll be able to watch Zhang Ye's documentary very soon."
"Seems that they were allocated 10 million RMB for it as well."
"What? How can that be?!"
"It's true! I've also received very reliable news that it's 10 million RMB!"
"Can they spend that much money on a documentary?"
"That's because there is something more to this. Yan Tianfei did not want their money to land in the hands of Central TV Department 1. That's why he allocated all the money to Zhang Ye in a fit of anger."
"What's the new documentary about?"
"I'm not sure, but I've heard that it's about cooking?"
"A documentary about cooking? What's so interesting about that?"
"Who knows? But even if it's not based on cooking, there's nothing to look forward to in a documentary. After all, documentaries are a niche genre. No matter how they're shot, they are more or less still the same. I've heard that they even intend to shoot the documentary with HD video cameras? That's a purely superfluous move. Is there even a need to shoot a cooking documentary with HD equipment? I've never heard of anyone using HD video cameras to shoot a documentary! That's such a waste of money!"
"Who knows what Zhang Ye is thinking?"
"Hai, then what do you expect him to do? The place that Zhang Ye went to is Department 14. It's the only place willing to take him in and give him the money to make a show. Do you think that he still has a choice? All he can do is to brace himself to produce a documentary. Therefore, all of you shouldn't be thinking too hard. Hur hur, my guess is that Zhang Ye himself also does not know how his documentary might turn out this time. I bet that he just got tired of idling around and so chose to make a casual documentary for fun. Probably no one is taking this too seriously."
"You're right on point."
"Yes, I think the same as you."
"Hai, Zhang Ye is finished. He has at least another half a year to go in his contract at Central TV and this is as good as being frozen. Right now, what's getting the most attention from everyone at Central TV is only Department 1's Rise to the Dance. Even the Central TV station leaders are placing a great deal of emphasis on it. Didn't their stage just get badly damaged yesterday, and then on the same night, the station started withdrawing funds from everywhere else so that they could use it to cover Xu Yipeng and Chen Ye's show? Who wouldn't notice that favoritism? All of Central TV's people and resources have to make way for Rise to the Dance since it's a critical show that will help cement Central TV Department 1's position as the best in the variety show industry. They cannot afford to mess this up. As for everyone else? All the other shows? All of them will have to step aside!"
"That's unavoidable since Department 1 has a special status at Central TV."
"But there are certain things that Central TV Department 1 has indeed gone overboard with. Regarding Zhang Ye back then, they never gave their full support to him. Frankly, ever since the beginning, Central TV Department 1 has never treated him as one of them. They would only trust someone like Chen Ye who has been a long-serving employee of Central TV."
"Don't say any more. There are some things that we just cannot do anything about, hai."
"That's right, this is a fight between gods. Let's just watch from the sides."
Not long after, it was on the news as well.
"Zhang Ye to oversee and produce a documentary!"
"A new challenge faces Zhang Ye and the team of The Voice: A documentary series!"
This news was not very prominent and the number of the media outlets reporting were not that many either. However, when it was published, it attracted a whole lot of attention!
Zhang Ye's friends were all stunned!
Crosstalk actor Yao Jiancai posted on Weibo in shock: "Little Zhang is going to shoot a documentary?"
Singer Chen Guang: "Is he crossing over into other industries again? This should be considered crossing industries, right?"
Dong Shanshan, the host of Beijing Television's Do You Remember: "I wish everything goes well for my old classmate. Always supporting you! Hur hur."
Beijing Television's program team lead, Hu Fei: "A documentary? That won't be easy to shoot at all."
A popular contestant of The Voice, Luo Yu: "Director Zhang is challenging the impossible again!"
The netizens could not stop discussing.
"A documentary? Did they make a mistake?"
"I know that Zhang Ye has gone over to the Central TV Documentary Channel, but I never expected that he would really be making a documentary!"
"Will the final product be watchable? Fuck, who even watches documentaries anyway?"
"I don't watch them much either, ahem."
"Documentaries are overdone with the same old topics. There's nothing interesting about them!"
"Get lost! Even if Teacher Zhang shoots a documentary about dog shit, I'll still watch it!"
"Right! Supporting Teacher Zhang!"
"There's finally news of Teacher Zhang's new program. Praise be! But it's just too bad that it's a documentary. Sob! How do you expect us to watch a documentary?! Even if I forced myself, I wouldn't be able to watch it! The educative nature of a documentary is too strong and too boring! Hai. In any case, I'm not keeping my hopes up, but really it's not because I don't support Teacher Zhang!"
"Making a documentary after making a variety show? This jump is a bit too much!"
There were all sorts of differing opinions.
Even some of Zhang Ye's fans also expressed that they wouldn't be able to watch if it were a documentary, much less those who were not his fans. Not many netizens believed that it would do well at all.
Almost instantaneously, the heated discussions about Zhang Ye's new show died down. Many people's attentions turned back to discussion posts or Weibo posts related to Rise to the Dance and they talked about it fervently. Regarding Central TV Department 1's large-scale dancing talent show, many people were more optimistic about it. In the past few days, under Central TV Department 1's intense promotions and troll army led commentary, the discussions about this topic never ceased and stayed fresh in the minds of everyone.
"Chen Ye's status has risen again."
"It's probably the same for Xu Yipeng too. If Rise to the Dance becomes popular, do you think Old Xu can land the position of executive director for this year's Spring Festival Gala? He has even taken on the role of assistant director at previous Spring Festival Galas before."
"I'm looking forward to this dance show."
"Yes, I'm already tired of watching the recent variety shows, but there really haven't been any dancing talent shows before!"
"Central TV Department 1 really has the makings to become the dominant force of the variety show industry."
This was the entertainment industry and it had always been so realistic. If you had good works, stories, or news, everyone's discussions would revolve around you. Once you were out of new works, or if your stories became boring, even if you were an A-list celebrity, everyone would stop following you. With time, if you didn't have any new works, no topics of discussion, and no popularity, even an A-list celebrity would drop to the B-list and a B-lister would drop to the C-list. There were many celebrities who ended up like that, and Zhang Ye was also in that awkward position now. However, the difference between him and the fallen celebrities was that this fellow had great capability. Even if he couldn't perform in his own profession, he could still pull in fame from his ventures in the gaming and mathematics worlds to maintain his popularity. Although it might not increase his popularity much, at least it helped in not letting it decline for the time being.
Therefore, Zhang Ye had nothing to worry about or had any concerns for now. His popularity was already stable for the time being. He did not need to consider other matters and only needed to shoot the documentary well. When A Bite of China got broadcast, everyone would find out whether his show was good or bad!
In the afternoon.
The last set of HD equipment was finally delivered by the staff of their sister channel.
Zhang Ye's heart was set and he immediately called out, "Little Wang!"
Little Wang blinked as she walked over. "Are you looking for me, Director Zhang?"
"Go and book the plane tickets. The teams will be split into three according to plan. We will set off on time tomorrow morning, so no one is to be late as the plane will not wait for anyone!" Zhang Ye instructed.
Little Wang was stunned. "Ah? Tomorrow morning?"
Ha Qiqi also asked, "Director Zhang, why...why are we in such a hurry?"
All the other program team staff of A Bite of China were not at all prepared either.
Zhang Ye smiled and said, "It will already be winter if we keep dawdling like this. We won't be able to film at many of the northern locations if that happens. We can wait, but time does not wait, so let's just endure the hardship for now and start packing once you all get back home in the evening. For a period of time, everyone will be working outside of Beijing on a business trip. Unless you have a very special reason, you won't be going back home for a while. Therefore, please inform your family about this beforehand. When we are finished with our work, I will apply to Director Yan to give everyone a long vacation."
"Understood, Director Zhang."
"Then we'll go prepare!"
Zhang Ye also called home to his parents.
Du du, the call connected. His mother answered the phone.
Zhang Ye said: "Mom, help me pack my luggage and put in more clothes. I'm afraid that I might not have time to pack when I get home. I'll be flying out tomorrow morning."
His mother asked: "Where are you going off to?"
"I will be filming a show. It's a documentary." Zhang Ye said.
His mother nearly fainted. "You're truly serious about filming the documentary? Can you do it?"
Zhang Ye laughed: "You'll know once the documentary is broadcast!"
After hanging up, Zhang Ye went to report to Yan Tianfei again. His application for the business trip was officially approved, and after he returned, Zhang Ye immediately announced, "The cameras will officially start rolling tomorrow for A Bite of China!"