Chapter 120 - He Didn't Tell You?
Chapter 120: He Didn’t Tell You?
Translator: Lonelytree Editor: Millman97
Even among other celebrities, Luo Mingxin was an idol. He had several awards for best actor under his belt and was of the few rare Asian superstars who were loved by the western media. Luo Mingxin’s position in the industry could not be understated.
Of those who just entered the field, there were none who did not view Luo Mingxin as a mountain that could not be climbed and the highest target that they were working toward. Therefore, although the young man was still grousing about missing the audition a minute ago, when he saw his own idol slow down his car and roll down his window to greet him, he did not know how to react.
Luo Mingxin nodded at the young man and Luo Ce, who recognized him, before moving his gaze to Ye Shuang. He asked with a smile, “Doing something with your friends tonight?”
Ye Shuang was confused. “Technically, we have something to do with you tonight as well… Erm, I mean, I’m treating everyone to dinner tonight, did Director Zhou not inform you?”
Luo Mingxin was shocked. He turned to ask for his phone from his assistant. He flipped through his inbox, and there was indeed a message from Director Zhou. Luo Mingxin smiled apologetically. “I didn’t notice this. There’s supposed to be a business ball that I’m required to attend tonight… But, oh well. Where and when?”
A ball was rejected just like that. Then again, he had the power to do so. If this was Luo Ce and the young man, the ball would have been an important chance to socialize—perhaps they might run into a sponsor who would be willing to invite them for an endorsement or commercial. However, in Luo Mingxin’s eyes, a ball was no different than a dinner. In fact, he thought it was more tiring than a dinner.
After Ye Shuang gave the name of the restaurant and time, she added jokingly, “Actually, we can meet up another time. After all, we’ll see each other during shooting anyway and I’m afraid you’ll offend someone if you miss out on the ball.”
“Offend? Who in the country doesn’t know that I have a broken leg? Due to the injury, I can’t drink alcohol and can’t even stand for long.” Luo Mingxin smirked coldly, probably reminded of someone. “Making nice with the sponsors is not a bad thing, but at the end of the day, the artist should be the most important. Certain people wish to sell me out for money, but that also depends on whether I’m willing to give them that face or not.”
The personal assistant pulled on Luo Mingxin’s sleeves surreptitiously, and that earned him a glare from the man. The assistant immediately shrunk back to the corner of his seat.
Looks like this is family business… Ye Shuang smiled, pretending not to hear the words unsaid. “Then, we’ll see Brother Luo tonight. By the way, this is Brother Luo, my family. He’s now an agent. If Brother Luo sees him in the future, please take good care of him.”
Luo Mingxin was tickled. “This is the first time someone asked me to take care of someone so directly. Sure, but don’t waste that enormous courage of yours, remember to show that courage during the scene in a few days.”
Luo Mingxin did not promise anything, but at least his tone was not bad. Luo Ce was satisfied with this result, and even the young artist had his face full of smiles. Luo Mingxin did not really want to attend the so-called ball, and he stopped the car when he saw Ye Shuang on the way there. Since there was a dinner tonight, he had every reason to skip the ball tonight and told his driver to turn around.
Ye Shuang stopped the man. “You’re going back to the bungalow? Perfect, Director Zhou said that we need to help arrange a scene for this young man. If Brother Luo is returning to the set, do you mind taking him with you to meet the set manager?”
The young man who was pointed out almost fainted on the spot. Even Luo Mingxin, who had witness Ye Shuang’s courage earlier, was speechless. “You want me to give him a ride?”
You want an Asian superstar to give someone else a ride? Perfection! No one has dared to make this demand of me yet.
“Well, your words are heavier than mine. We don’t have a big favor to ask, just that you’ll take good care of him back at the set.” Ye Shuang smiled, not hiding the fact that she was using Celebrity Luo.
Did her demand go a little bit too far? Not really. Even though he was a superstar, even though he would not normally promise to help others, giving someone a ride was not really much of a favor. Giving a friend a ride was nothing, and even if it was not a friend, if the person insisted on being close to him, what else could he do? Reject it by claiming it would waste his gas? But the key thing was no one had dared to do such a thing to him before…
“…Get in!” Luo Mingxin was someone who had an image to take care of, and he would not be caught doing things that were too un-gentlemanly. As long as the request was not unreasonable, this kind of individual was easier to deal with than most. You just had to be a little shameless.
When Luo Mingxin’s car disappeared around the corner with the young artist whose limbs were practically frozen, Luo Ce relaxed enough to say, “You actually dare to make demands of Celebrity Luo…”
Ye Shuang smiled. This was like a scholar meeting a soldier. The scholar had to uphold his gentlemanly standard, arguing with words and logic, but the soldier ignored his words and attacked with force. The scholar would always lose. The greatest example was Tyson biting Evander Holyfield’s ears. Evander Holyfield was a heavy weight boxer who had many world records; he could defend against punches and jabs but could not rival shamelessness.
Those who followed the rules would be unsettled by those who did not because while they followed the accepted regulations closely, their opponents did not give a flying f*ck about their rules. Of course, Ye Shuang did not think that she had gone overboard. After all, she did not bite Luo Mingxin’s ear; she only asked for a free car ride.
After sending the young artist away, only Luo Ce and Ye Shuang were left. Since they were future family, they did not need to be so guarded around each other. When the young man was still around earlier, it had been difficult for Luo Ce to say anything. Now, he let out a long sigh and started to slowly explain what Celebrity Luo’s words meant. “Everyone in the field knows a thing or two about Luo Mingxin. After all, people have always been focusing on him. The ball tonight sounded like it was arranged by his manager. Normally, with an artist as famous as Luo Mingxin, the manager should have done everything within his power to stay close to him, but there is some bad blood between them. After all, their goals are different.
“Frankly, both the star and the manager are working on the same thing, which is the value of the star’s name. Normally, people would look after themselves, but certain managers only see their artists as a product, so they use all kind of methods to squeeze as many benefits out of them as they can.”
Even though his future wife had stated that his future cousin-in-law had no interest in being in the entertainment business, half of Ye Shuang’s leg was already in the pot, so Luo Ce was not afraid to reveal certain things to Ye Shuang. “For example, to ensure the star power of the celebrity doesn’t drop, the manager will often arrange for the star to be in some kind of scandal when they aren’t working or to accept movies that are damaging to the star’s image for money and exposure. The star definitely considers things from their own angle, but the manager considers things from the angle of the agency. When both see eye to eye, the manager can help the star with many things, but once they see things differently, conflicts are bound to happen.”
Luo Mingxin had already done enough work and started to slow down his career. The projects that he accepted were because he enjoyed them and not because he needed them. However, it was different for the manager. Luo Mingxin could live off his laurels for the rest of his life, but the manager could not.
Even though the star and manager were supposed to support each other, when their intentions were different, life would be hard. He wanted to retire? Good for him, but what about the manage‽
Furthermore, even if the manager was willing to let go, the agency would not agree. It had been so hard for them to cultivate a big star; not using him to his maximum potential would be a waste!
Therefore, with the permission from the agency, the conflict between Luo Mingxin and his manager started to increase. There had been news that Luo Mingxin had already prepared to leave his agency after his contract ended, and Luo Mingxin had even hinted at that himself. He was powerful enough to not rely on any agency now.
Therefore, with this in mind, how they could squeeze every drop of value out of Luo Mingxin before he departed became the only concern for the manager and the agency. Things like accepting as many movies as they could, using Luo Mingxin’s name to do favors for others, using Luo Mingxin to gain good relationship with other sponsors, using Luo Mingxin to bring up as many newbie actors as they could…
Even though the contract between Luo Mingxin and his agency was not tight and had few limitations, there were certain things that he could not reject.
“This is just like a couple getting married and breaking up,” Ye Shuang concluded after Luo Ce explained everything. “For example, who will keep the house that they bought together? If it’s the woman, then the man might not feel great. After all, it was he who paid for it. If it’s the man, the woman would feel insecure. There are so many extra-marital affairs nowadays, who knows whether the man will abandon her after she has helped him manage the family for decades?
“The manager needs security and openly asks Luo Mingxin to give him as many resources as he can before he leaves, but Luo Mingxin thinks the other party as inconsiderate to his feelings. At the end of the day, it’s better if you depend on yourself. If the manager is truly talented and connected, he will be able to survive without Luo Mingxin.”
This analogy was too close to home, and Luo Ce became alert immediately. “Xiao Ye, your way of thinking is wrong. Think of it this way, you’ve shown your sincerity, and of course, you would expect the other party to do the same, but this is mainly just a test to see whether the other party is serious or not. Wait, do you plan to keep some things to yourself when you marry my cousin?”
“…” Ye Shuang did not know to laugh or cry. Luo Ce had such an imagination. No wonder he was Ye Shuang’s biological cousin.