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Watch all of Scud's filmography on GagaOOLala!

Every gay man has heard of the works of director Scud, even if he has not watched any of his films: Permanent Residence (2009), Amphetamine (2010), or his most recent work, Utopians (2016), all of Scud’s films feature a more-than-decent amount of sculpted male bodies and sex-appeal. But besides this, they also deal with controversial topics such as drugs, depression, attraction towards straight men, and even philosophical and religious issues.

This year, Scud is releasing his seventh title, Thirty Years of Adonis (2017), about a 30-year-old man who dreams of becoming a famous star, but ends up falling into a lustful trap that submerges him into a world of hedonism. In the end, this experience makes him reflect on his own existence. GagaTai seized the opportunity and sat down with Scud to discuss his recent work.

Scud greeted us with -y!V9r+$6W)^zUjg0aGmgti^[email protected])x&29giQfvza smile and sat on the couch next to the window, the sky behind him. His round, smiling face surrounded by white light is remindful of the Buddhist connotations in his latest film.

After this warm welcome, we jumped directly into the challenges of filming Thirty Years of Adonis sex scenes, specifically the one where 30 men restrain the main character and tie him to a cross. Scud revealed that the main actor, Hefei, was very worried about the whole setting. Even though he knew the other 30 men, he could not see their faces due to their clothes and because he was lying down. So, even when they slowly approached him all at once, he did not know what was going to happen. “This type of fear is not related to the trust on the director, but in something inexplicable.” Later, the make-up artist also told Scud that when she approached Hefei on the cross to touch up his make-up, she also felt the urge of run away from there. “At that moment I realized the power a large group of people has over one individual”.


Source: 演異舍


Source: 演異舍

This is the second collaboration between Scud and Hefei. Hefei’s height and delicate features reminded Scud of the Greek god Adonis, the god of desire. From their previous collaboration, Utopians, to Thirty Years of Adonis, has Scud noticed any change in Hefei? “When shooting Utopians, Hefei was much more cautious; right now he is filled with confidence,” Scud said. He told us that Hefei plays a big star in Thirty Years of Adonis, but destiny has something very different in store for him.  

This story, full of twists, has allowed Hefei to show off a wider acting range. Scud also mentioned that while Thirty Years of Adonis is full of wonderful actors, he did not want to put Hefei in the spotlight. “It did not diminish his performance; in fact, his background role enhanced it.”

And… surprise! When you go into the theater to watch Thirty Years of Adonis, you will not only enjoy Hefei’s godlike beauty, but you will also meet Eric East, a famous Chinese gay porn star. Scud invited Eric to play a role because of his outstanding and eye-catching appearance.

“You will never find another man like him,” Scud said. “Although he only appears for a few minutes he plays a very important role. I need the audience to recognize him.” Actually, Scud did not watch Eric’s previous films. When the crew arrived in Taiwan, Scud found out that many of the actors were Eric’s fans. “As soon as they saw Eric, they immediately asked him for a picture and his signature. That really impressed me.”


Eric East / Source: 演異舍

Eric East / Source: 演異舍

In addition to Hefei and Eric, there are two other actors who will blow your mind away - Alan Tang and Ding Yu-Sheng. Scud revealed that Alan Tang is quite mature in private, sometimes discussing stuff like Karma with him. Some of Alan’s fans also said Alan’s personality is different from how he appears on the screen. This bothered him a lot. But Scud told him, “An actor should only care [about] his performance on screen because that is your chosen art.” As for Ding, Scud said he has very theatrical qualities. “When we were taking a nude photo of the group, it occurred to me that Ding was quite nice. He arrived at the place right after he picked up the phone. He was also the first one who took his clothes off at the moment. I think he is quite interesting. This film is his debut, and he is really attractive.”


Alan Tang / Source: Thirty Years of Adonis

Alan Tang / Source: Thirty Years of Adonis

Ding Yu Sheng / Source: Thirty Years of Adonis

Ding Yu Sheng / Source: Thirty Years of Adonis

Speaking of nudity, I asked him the meaning of performing naked to him. He said nudity is a man’s entirety.

“I preferred looking at faces when I was young. As I grew up, the parts of men I focused on were getting lower.  Now I examine a man’s entirety. I can tell if a man has a beautiful or sexual aura to attract the audience once he stands out.”

“I’m obsessed with nudity. I am not interested in a man’s outfit. When we take photos, I mean your nude photos. I want to take your picture, not your shirt and pants.”


Thirty Years of Adonis

Entirety is composed of parts. Without one of the parts, the entirety no longer exists. Scud often shot the important parts in his previous works, so we asked: “You usually shoot penises in your films, including Thirty Years of Adonis. How do you present them to the audience?”

He smiled and said: “About this question… Sometimes people tell me the recurrent topic in my films is nudity and private parts. I think if I don’t show those private parts it cannot be considered nudity. So, they must appear.”

He continued by sharing his experience in auditions. Once a Taiwanese actor told him if he picked him for the part, Scud had to give him some time to get an erection before starting to shoot films. “In general, I don’t care about sizes. Usually, I won’t ask for a specific state for the penis. But if it is allowed, men look better when they have erection. So, it makes no sense to see this as a bad thing.


Thirty Years of Adonis

Unless the actors are very professional or have a strong desire for performance. I once met a guy who was erected all the time. He said when he took his clothes off and saw strangers before him, he would immediately get excited. In this case, this is not good for the film when you have many different scenes to be shot.”

His films are full of nudity, penises and homosexuality; therefore he naturally encountered some obstacles, including objections based on religion. I asked him for his perspective on the objections to homosexuality from the religious community in Taiwan. He said: “In Hong Kong, some similar groups are also against my films. There is a dialogue in my work, Utopians: ’The one who objects homosexuality is not the god up above, but the churches down beneath. God creates sexual diversity. Can you fully explain his divine commands?’ Many people achieve their purpose in the name of God, but sometimes they are just restricting other men’s freedom. I think this brings shame to their religions. But I also know no matter what you do, there’s always someone who is not happy with it. I think we should let it go.”

The theme of Thirty Years of Adonis is the understanding of life and death from a Buddhist perspective. At the end of the interview, I suddenly recalled the touching scene in which Hefei and Sim Yam-yam hugged each other and cried as Karma arrived. I asked Scud’s feelings about this scene. He kept silent and paused for a while, said: “That scene is really special…”

“I was looking at the screen behind them at the scene. As Yam-yam spoke, I was totally in shock. I didn’t realize her performance wasTn2SjPzOU8P&^Fu)5aYhE)Kdi(nQZh6TXm(dJN$tYyIW5VR)bQ so impressive. When she said the first word, she was already crying. I was shocked and naturally said: ‘Wow!’ Then I started crying.”


Thirty Years of Adonis

I saw tears in Scud’s eyes. His voice became stiff. His Adam’s apple was shaking.

“I cried for ages and I forgot to say ’cut.’ I was deeply touched. Her lines also described our desire to live. If everything is fated, then what is the meaning of trying so hard? Would you stop trying your best because eventually everything comes to an end?’ I don’t think this is a good attitude towards life. But I think this is the most positive thinking in this hopeless life. While facing each pain, separation, dilemma and helplessness, we still have to put on our best face.”

After Scud finished speaking, I couldn’t open my mouth to end this interview because there were still some tears in his eyes. But I think what he said is the best annotation for Thirty Years of Adonis or even his previous works. Some of you may question if there are only desires, sex, and bed affairs in his films. Nevertheless, Scud’s work fearlessly present gay men’s lives and spirits. After this interview, we got to know the core view of life and death from Thirty Years of Adonis. Gay men’s desires are about not only lust but also their connection with life.

Thirty Years of Adonis beautifully tells the ups and downs of a gay man who wants to be a super star. When he finally finds his palace and lands his dream job, he faces a turning point in his life. The character may be gay, but the subject matter will resonate with everyone. It relates to sex, love, life, and death. Once you step on a journey, you will “do your best” until the end.

Scud paused for a while, and had a sip of water. Finally, he smiled at us again. I looked at this director who presented gay men’s sex and life to the world. If I wanted to shoot a film about the questions of desires, love, life, and death, I would aso put on a warm smile, and firmly and gently lead the audience to solve the puzzles by themselves.

Watch all of Scud's filmography on GagaOOLala!


 

 

Drinking Buddies invites LGBTQ members of different sexes and gender identities as well as LGBT allies to play "answer the question or take a shot of vodka." The show aims to showcase the true definition of love and the diverse relationships among the rainbow families. Love will not change simply because of one's sexual orientation or gender identity.

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