HCM CITY Shooting for the film on the late songwriter Trịnh Cong Sơn called Em va Trịnh (You and Trịnh) will begin this week in HCM City.
The film’s director Phan Gia Nhật Linh and his staff are working on the last period of casting.
Two young actresses, Phạm Nguyễn Lan Thi and Hoang Ha, play the lead roles in the film.
They were chosen from over 500 candidates, including professional artists, from Ha Noi, Huế and HCM City.
Em va Trịnh is about the life and career of Sơn, a talented songwriter in Vietnamese contemporary music. Sơn is famous for his anti-war songs and called the “Bob Dylan of Viet Nam” by his fans at home and abroad.
The film features the artist and his music in the 1960s and 70s.
Sơn’s love life is also highlighted. The love between Sơn and a Japanese fan, Yoshii Michiko, during Sơn’s time in Paris in the 80s, is featured. Yoshii later travelled to Viet Nam many times to discover Sơn and his music. The couple decided to wed. They faced cultural differences and then cancelled the wedding at the last minute.
Actresses Thi and Ha will play Dao Ánh and Bích Diễm, respectively, who inspired some of Sơn’s famous romantic songs.
Director Linh originally wanted the characters of Ánh and Diễm to be residents of Huế, the city where the girls were born, but both Thi and Ha are from HCM City.
“My actresses will spend a training course with specialists to have an accent from Huế,” said director Linh, who has not revealed the casting for the character of Sơn.
According to Linh, the producer Galaxy Studio and its partners spent more than VNĐ20 billion (US$860,000) on the production. “We hope the film will meet the demands of Sơn’s Vietnamese and foreign fans,” he said.
Born in Huế in 1939, Sơn became popular in 1957 with his first song, Ưot Mi (Crying Eyes).
His lasting legacy includes albums of romantic love songs, such as Diễm Xưa (Diễm, My Cherished Memory) and Ru Tình (Lullaby To Love), released in the 1960s and 70s.
Diễm Xưa is well-known in Japan, where it was introduced through singer Khanh Ly in Osaka in 1970. Later, the song was written in Japanese, Utsukushii Mukashi, and was listed among Japan’s top 10 favourite love songs.
Sơn went on to become southern Viet Nam’s most famous songwriter of anti-war music collections including Ca Khuc Da Vang (Yellow Skin Song), Kinh Viet Nam (Vietnamese Prayer) and Ta Phải Thấy Mặt Trời (We Must See The Sunlight).
After 1975, Sơn continued to write songs and enjoyed great success with both his lyrics and melodies. He died in HCM City in 2001 after a prolonged illness.