Charlie and the piglets

This play, about Chinese boys working in the tin mines in Malaysia, was filmed in the birthplace of Sun Yatsen (孙中山). The weather was very wet so filming was frequently cancelled. As luck would have it our hotel was right over the road from the Sun Yatsen museum, so every day if there was nothing else to do I got my umbrella and went over and browsed. If it hadn’t been for that I probably never would have realised how important both Sun and his wife Song Qingling (宋庆龄) were for the history if China. Song Qingling played a crucial role in bridging the gap between Sun’s era and the communist era. She saw through Chiang Kai-shek and obstructed his claims to to be rightful heir of Sun Yatsen.

In this play I was a violent and murderous mine boss. The Chinese boys, who were mostly press-ganged into working in the mines, are referred to by their employers as “piglets”. The young actor in this scene is Tong Dawei who recently co-starred with Christian Beale in “Flowers of War”.