Secret agent inspires new TV epic

June 23, 2006

15:48' 22/06/2006 (GMT+7)

The life of one of Vietnam's most outstanding intelligence agents Hoang Minh Dao (1923-1969) will be portrayed in the series Con Duong Sang (Bright Way), scheduled to be shot at the end of this month.

Shaken, not stirred: A series about secret agent Hoang Minh Dao will be shot this month.

Born in the northern province of Quang Ninh, Dao (real name Dao Phuc Loc) had a harsh childhood. He was kicked out of his home by his stepmother and his father, a drunken merchant, who was always away from home and could do nothing to help him and his sisters.

Later, after working as a revolutionary liaison Dao became head of the army intelligence office of the military committee of the resistance force against the French in 1946.

He later held important positions of the resistance force during the first and second Indochina wars, including Commissar of the Special Task Force in Sai Gon (former name of HCM City).

Dao's family could not find his tomb, located by the Vam Co Dong River in the southern province of Dong Nai, until 30 years after his death in 1969. The details of his life remain fairly sketchy, even though the country has been united for 31 years.

"Dao's life is worth praising," said war veteran Pham Dan, Dao's comrade.

The film director Pham Viet Thanh, who started to study the secret agent's life four years ago, said the more he learned about Dao the more he wanted to make a film of his life.

The ten-episode series is based on the memories of Dao's children and comrades. These sources are an advantage but also a challenge for the filmmaker.

"Some of Dao's comrades, now retired senior army officers and officials, are advisors to the film. That means I have to try my best to make the film as true to life as possible to meet the living witnesses' expectations," Thanh said.

He went further to say that the series Bright Way was a full portrait of the secret man since his childhood.

"I will not make Dao out to be a hero at birth. He had a life like many others that included happiness, sorrow, loss, and loneliness."

Young actor Xuan Bac was chosen to play Dao because apart from sharing a similar appearance the director believes Bac is a talented actor who can express the sophisticated emotions of the secret service man.

Bright Way will be completed in six months and will be televised on Hanoi Television as well as local television stations throughout the country. The film is a joint production of the Hanoi Audio Visual Company and Quang Ninh Television.

(Source: Viet Nam News)

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