Bai Yu & Zhu Yilong Primer
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For Guardian fans interested in learning more about Bai Yu and Zhu Yilong but get lost within the sea of Chinese social media, I've written up a quick primer with lots of fun trivia & Guardian-related interviews/behind-the-scenes information, using information gathered with the help of the Guardian Discord (especially choco).
Basic Factoids and Trivia
|Zhu Yilong - 朱一龙||Bai Yu - 白宇|
|Birthday: April 16, 1988
||Birthday: April 8, 1990|
|Height: 180 cm / 5'10"
||Height: 183 cm / 6'|
|Hometown: Wuhan, Hubei
||Hometown: Xi'an, Shaanxi|
|Alma Mater: Beijing Film Academy
||Alma Mater: Central Academy of Drama|
|Fans: Xiao Long Bao (小笼包) - A type of Chinese steamed bun. Pun on the Long (龙) character in Zhu Yilong's name.
||Fans: Xiao Yu Zhou (小宇宙) - Little Galaxies. Pun on the Yu (宇) character in Bai Yu's name.|
- Long-ge (龙哥) = Older Brother Long. Most common nickname used by Bai Yu.
- Zhu Laoshi (朱老师) = Teacher Zhu. Respectful name used often by interviewers/co-stars/fans.
- Ju Laosi (居老师) = Teacher Zhu, pronounced using the Wuhan dialect.
- Jiejie (姐姐) = Older Sister / Zhu Meili (朱美丽) = Zhu Beautiful. Nicknames only used by Peng Guanying (彭冠英), Zhu Yilong's bff. Zhu Yilong in turns calls Peng Guanying Meimei (妹妹) = Younger sister and Peng Piaoliang (彭漂亮) = Peng Pretty.
- Johnny Bai - His official English name, though he doesn't use it for acting.
- Xiao Bai (小白) = Little Bai / Lao Bai (老白) = Old Bai. Most common nickname used by Zhu Yilong. He uses Lao Bai when he wants to make fun of Bai Yu for looking older.
- Bai Laoshi (白老师) = Teacher Bai. Respectful name used often by interviewers/co-stars/fans.
- Bei Laosi (北老师) = Teacher Bai, pronounced using the Xi'an dialect.
- Bai Shu (白叔) = Uncle Bai. Another name used often by interviewers.
- Yu-ge (宇哥) = Older Brother Yu. Sometimes used by Bai Yu's younger co-stars.
|Singing: Playlist||Singing: Playlist|
Not included above are the variety of fan nicknames for the two actors. Such as Long Long (拢龙), Paopao Long (泡泡龙) = Bubble Dragon (for how often he logs onto weibo), Bai Tian Tian (白甜甜) = Bai Sweet, 玫瑰花刺 = Rose Thorn - nickname for Bai Yu's beard.
- Has two dogs (poodles), Oscar and Cola.
- Knows Muay Thai. Learned boxing in Peongyang when he was nine.
- Short-sighted, wears contacts.
- His mother used to dress him up as a girl.
- Wasn't sure what he wanted to do, so decided to try acting at his mother's suggestion. He fell during both his auditions. Clip
- Loves hotpot, eats it at least twice a week.
- Had ants at home as pets (he named one of the ants “Shining Girl” 光辉女郎 because he thinks it’s depressed and he wants to cheer it up.
- Once accidentally joined one of his fangroups on weibo, and promptly got kicked out of it. Video
- He is not very social and often keeps to himself after work. In Story of Minglan, where he plays the second male lead, the two main leads were together (and have since gotten married + had a baby) - and he never noticed.
- Is good at the claw machine, highest record was 10+ in one go. NYE claw machine video
- Chinese fans often say he's blurry (adorably confused by everything). He once stood in same spot while the automatic door closed on him twice thinking up an answer to a question. The fan had to suggest they move.
- Likes reading autobiography books
- Has been known to go on lofter, bilibili. Fans often write danmu (scrolling text) telling him to stop watching their fanvids.
- Loves playing basketball. His height holding him back from basketball success may have contributed to his height complex. See clip of him complaining his horse is too short.
- Due to a series of injuries performing stunts, he has waist/back issues.
- Has one dog (name unknown). Pic.
- Has two older sisters. His family is wealthy.
- Takes long breaks between filming, sometimes up to half a year.
- Short-sighted, wears glasses.
- He loves vespas, was heartbroken when one of his got stolen.
- Loves memes, shitposting (volume warning) and livestreaming. Has said he would become a professional streamer if he weren't an actor.
- Very outgoing and not self-conscious. Has shaved multiple times on livestream and shown off his leg hair via close-ups.
- Frequently drops by his fangroups to leave messages and talk to the fans.
- He remembers people/conversations from years ago. One crew member reported Bai Yu remembering them from 3 years ago and the exact occasion when they last met.
- Pretends his debut drama (0.5 Diors) doesn't exist when he talks about how he never did any gay scenes before. Wishes he could erase the 5-second stripping clip from that show from the internet.
- Very romantic, most embarrassingly displayed in his old weibo, Huang Taizi.
- Bai Yu requires at minimum 3 kisses per day. His longest make-out session is 20 minutes. Source
- He wasn't originally the lead in Legend of Fa Hai, but when the original lead ran away with the money, he took on the lead role for free to help out his friends, even delaying his surgery.
- He has stomach problems, but still likes spicy food. He's also had pneumothorax surgery three times.
- Knows calligraphy and archery.
- (Open Secret) His girlfriend is Liu Mengmeng, who he met during 0.5 Diors (屌丝日记).
For more information on how Chinese naming/nicknames generally work, you can check out this post. So you wouldn't want to ever refer to Bai Yu as "Bai" or "Yu" alone, but go with any of his nicknames or his full name. You can technically call Zhu Yilong by "Yilong" by the two-syllable rule of thumb, but it's not a name I hear him called very often. Some fans do sometimes call Zhu Yilong "Zhuzhu" or "Xiao Zhuzhu" or "Juju."
Guardian Behind the Scenes
Guardian (40 Episodes) on Youtube
Social Media Timeline
- Partway through Guardian's production, the original production company (LETV) went bankrupt, and the show was picked up by Youku. The soundtrack is extremely high quality compared to the low budget of the rest of the series because it was finalized before the budget problems.
- Zhu Yilong joined Guardian as a favor to a friend, replacing the original actor Ren Yankai, who pulled out of the production.
- The first scene Zhu Yilong and Bai Yu shot together was the scene where Shen Wei massaged ointment into Zhao Yunlan's arm after the robbery.
- Zhu Yilong was the one who suggested sleeve garters for Shen Wei.
- Zhu Yilong once trolled a novel Guardian fan who doubted his acting as Shen Wei. Translation. When asked about it later, he said he thought the glasses emoji looked like Shen Wei.
- When some of the staff took a cab to the wrong location for Flying Through Time's recording, Bai Yu personally drove them to the right place.
- Bai Yu, like Zhao Yunlan, has stomachaches from not eating regularly. Zhu Yilong finds out about it and sees it as his responsibility to drag Bai Yu to have breakfast at a nearby noodle shop every day.
- Bai Yu got his own hoverboard after seeing Zhu Yilong with one on-set.
- Bai Yu has been teased that on-set, he "never stands when he can sit, never sits when he can lie down."
Memes & Jokes from Casting to the end of Guardian Promotions
- The taxi scene where Zhao Yunlan naps on Shen Wei's shoulder: Episode 8, 23-minute mark
- Zhao Yunlan going "WOW" at the Black-Cloaked Envoy - Episode 10, 22-minute mark
- (Shameless Flirting) Heipao ge-ge, take care - Episode 25, 14:44
- After Shen Wei blocks Ye Zun's attack for Zhao Yunlan, he holds onto Zhao Yunlan's hand as he slides down - Clip. Zhu Yilong did an initial take without the hand-holding, waved it off, then did it again with the hand-holding.
Behind the Scenes:
Guardian Promotional Material
- Sina Interview - Zhu Yilong talks about becoming Shen Wei, acting/improvising with Bai Yu, and his unfortunate past roles. Bai Yu talks about his reaction to reading the novel (can this really be filmed?!), improvising, meeting Zhu Yilong and helping him come out of his shell, and his saltiness over Zhao Yunlan getting nerfed on the show.
- Ni Zou Kai - Brief collection of times Zhu Yilong told Bai Yu to go away.
- Bai Yu on Romantic Chemistry - Bai Yu chooses Zhu Yilong for the person he has most romantic chemistry with.
- Adorable 25-minute Happy Camp livestream - Long, but WORTH IT. They goof off and tease each other a lot. Features the Ju Laosi/Bei Laosi exchange, the Meow Meow song, and Bai Yu willingly dragging himself down if it means taking Zhu Yilong down with him.
- Zhu Yilong watches Bai Yu strip in 5 seconds - Bai Yu clip from 0.5 diors, gif from a ChicTV interview.
- Harper's Bazaar Interview - Q&A + Meme War, with Bai Yu's full powers as memelord on display.
- Novel Talk - Zhu Yilong + Bai Yu talking about the novel + Extra cuteness from Bai Yu almost admitting to bullying Zhu Yilong.
- Omni Interview 1. Zhu Yilong talks about taking Bai Yu to breakfast at a noodle restaurant every day.
- Omni Interview 2 - Discussion of how Zhu Yilong doesn't like to talk, but he talks more when around Bai Yu.
- Casting Call/Ju Shuo Interview. Lots of teasing about the Mao Houer memes. "Brotherhood." "Good friends." Hugs! Bai Yu denies his past as Huang Taizi, sings a song.
- Extra 1 - Advice to the girls who want to marry Bai Yu and Zhu Yilong.
- Extra 2 - Embarrassing childhood stories.
- PUBG - Talking about playing PUBG with each other
- Night Ask Interview - First impressions. Flaws (Zhu Yilong says Bai Yu has no flaws.) Corny pick-up lines. Shen Wei being single for 10k years.
- Mango TV Interview - Muay Thai vs Mantis Boxing. Interviewing each other. Meme reactions. Sketching each other's portraits.
- Zhu Yilong, Bai Yu and Yang Rong Collaboration - All three talk about their ideal roles if they were in the same show.
- Quick Response Compilation - Zhu Yilong x 2 + Bai Yu. Talking about Guardian and each other after filming. Watch this if you're ever curious about Bai Yu's head size (??)
- Bai Yu Being Teased - Unsubbed audio of a Guardian crew member teasing Bai Yu about Long-ge.
Happy Camp Variety Show Appearance
- Trailer. Quick Answers.
- Opening. Preview of events + Introduction of Cast. Finishing each other's sentences.
- Armwrestling. 1v1 and 2v2. Last match cut short to avoid Bai Yu getting hurt.
- Armwrestling (Deleted Scene). Zhu Yilong vs Bai Yu + Trash Talk Contest.
- Balloon Game. 1v1 up to 4v4. Bai Yu is ridiculously good at this game. During 3v3, Bai Yu and Zhu Yilong are called out for being too busy protecting each other to protect the balloon.
- Line Guessing Game. Try to guess the next line in a scene. Bai Yu got called the fuck out for constantly mentioning Zhu Yilong in his answers.
- Rooftop Confession + Song (Song Only). They express ther inner-most thoughts on the rooftop and sing a song they wrote together.
- Deleted Scene. Zhu Yilong hands Bai Yu a heart from his pocket.
- Behind-the-Scenes - Rehearsals, guitar playing, greeting the fans, livestream clips.
- Karaoke. Subbed Versions: Flying Through Time, Taro Love, Princess, Gege + I, Change Myself, The Hottest Ethnic Trend, Forget Me Not, Little Bit of Happiness + Bai Yu Solo version
Guardian Release Conference
For those of you with a lot of free time on your hands. Be warned: Zhu Yilong's own mother has said that his livestreams were boring.
If I list every interview Bai Yu and Zhu Yilong have done outside of Guardian, we'll be here all day. So instead, I'll link a few helpful YouTube channels who always have good content.
- wenella - Large amount of subtitled recent Zhu Yilong interviews.
- 朱一龙爱的搬运工 - Large number of older Zhu Yilong interviews.
- J Z - Up-to-date Bai Yu videos, not always subtitled.
- 白宇视频 - More Bai Yu videos, mostly unsubbed.
Filming Timelines (2017-2018)
|Zhu Yilong - 朱一龙||Bai Yu - 白宇|
|January - April 2017: As Flowers Fade and Fly Across The Sky
April 29 - July 12 2017: Guardian
July - September 29 2017: Granting You a Dreamlike Life
September - March 30 2018: Story of Minglan
May - September 2018: My True Friend
October 30 2018: Chongqi Filming Start
|2016-2017: Fated General, Zhao Ge, Founding of an Army|
April 29 - July 12 2017: Guardian
July - Oct 2017: Suddenly This Summer
Oct 2017 - May 2018: Break
May 16 - Aug 27 2018: Detective L
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