List of Rosy Business characters

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Promotional poster. From left to bottom: Wayne Lai as Chai Kau, Sheren Tang as Hong Po-kei, Suki Chui as Yau Man, Ron Ng as Chiang Bit-ching, Susan Tse as Yan Fung-yee, Kiki Sheung as Pang Giu, Elliot Ngok as Chiang Kiu, Kara Hui as Lau Fong.

Rosy Business is an award-winning costume television drama produced by TVB. The story follows the lives of the Chiang family in mid-19th century Eastern China. The plot largely focuses on the characters of Hong Po-kei and Chai Kau, and how their lives become intertwined upon the struggle of keeping the family rice shop, Hing Fung Nin under safe hands. The first episode was broadcast on April 27, 2009 and the last on May 29, 2009, which peaked to 47 rating points.

Many of the characters of Rosy Business, notably Chai Kau (Wayne Lai), earned critical praise for being well-written and pivoted the actors to fame for their acclaimed portrayal. The cast of Rosy Business swept a total of six big awards at the TVB Anniversary Awards in 2009, including Lai with three awards (Best Actor, My Favourite Male Character, and tvb.com's Popular Artist), Sheren Tang with Best Actress, Susan Tse with Best Supporting Actress, and Ngo Ka-nin with Most Improved Actor.

Chiang household (蔣家)[edit]

Chiang Kiu (蔣喬)[edit]

Chiang Kiu (Elliot Ngok) is the patriarch of the Chiang family. He is commonly referred to by his friends as the "Great Giver" due to his benevolent actions and care for the civilians of Wuxi. Known as "Rice King" by fellow business associates, he is the chairman of the city's food committee and is widely respected by other colleagues for his professionalism and wisdom.

Kiu spent much of his childhood witnessing his father's struggle to build Hing Fung Nin (慶豐年). Due to his father's failing healthy, Kiu takes over Hing Fung Nin at a young age and turns it into the most influential and prosperous rice shop of Wuxi, having it become the city's largest rice business. At this time, he was engaged to his childhood friend Hong Po-kei. A few months before their marriage, a terrible natural disaster devastates the crops of Nantong and leaves many civilians starving. To prevent aggression and starvation, Po-kei's father, the mayor of Nantong, decides to open the military food trailer to feed the people despite its violation of the martial law. Po-kei goes to Kiu for help, wanting to borrow Hing Fung Nin's trailer of rice to temporarily fill up the military trailer until the annual imperial inspector leaves for Beijing. Kiu immediately agrees to help, but while bringing the rice, he is stopped by his father. Upon seeing an empty trailer, the inspector sentences everyone involved and their families to death.

Kiu blames himself for having not been able to help them. Inspired by their brave sacrifice, he develops a strong sense of justice and strives to sell affordable rice. For different reasons, Kiu has three wives and three sons. When he donates a third of his wealth to charity, the Emperor grants him a rice feast at his manor, and he celebrates the feast with his family and the Emperor's brother, the Prince. As he walks into the kitchen, he sees Po-kei as the Prince's cook; he's shocked, alarming his first wife, Fung-yee. Not wanting Po-kei to face another death sentence, Kiu lies to his wives when they question him about why she's still alive. His second wife Pang Giu, not wanting the family to be in danger for not reporting her, indirectly notifies the Prince of Po-kei's illegal past. Kiu immediately begs the Prince to free her; he tells him the entire situation, and risks everything, including his own life. The Prince is touched by his story and ultimately frees Po-kei.

Still wanting to spend their lives together, Kiu and Po-kei soon get married. Knowing Po-kei's quick mind and intelligence, he lets her look after Hing Fung Nin with Bit-man, the family's eldest son. This extremely displeases Fung-yee, who sees Po-kei as a threat to her only son Bit-man. Kiu often discusses matters with Po-kei, and when his health fails, he gives her complete charge of Hing Fung Nin, much to Fung-yee and Bit-man's displeasure. Before Kiu dies, he writes two documented wills, of which only one of them will come to effect depending on Bit-man's actions, to be decided entirely by Po-kei.

Gui Yuk-yu (季玉如)[edit]

Gui Yuk-yu (Suet Nei) is the aged mother of Chiang Kiu.

Yuk-yu is a respected elder of the Chiang family. Not wanting to meddle with family politics, she spends the latter years of her life living in a nunnery. If not for a family emergency, she does not return home. She does what she thinks is best for her grandchildren, which often results in conflict with Po-kei.

When Chiang Kiu drops into a coma, Bit-man persuades Yuk-yu to return home to help him become Hing Fung Nin's temporary leader. However, Chai Kau convinces her to side with Po-kei, because after knowing the whole story, she couldn't side with Bit-man, no matter how much she loves him.

Yan Fung-yee (殷鳳儀)[edit]

Yan Fung-yee (Susan Tse, Jessie Shum as youth) is Chiang Kiu's official wife and the mother of the family's eldest son, Bit-man.

Born to a rich background, she is from one of Wuxi's most economically influential families. While she is aware of Chiang Kiu's engagement to Nantong's Hong Po-kei, she has always admired him for his wisdom and kindness, but kept her admiration a secret. She becomes protective of Kiu in many situations. One night, Fung-yee discovers through the words of Lee Cheung-fat, Chiang family's house keeper, that Kiu is lending Hing Fung Nin's rice supply to help the Hong family risk from capital punishment. Not wanting Kiu to be involved in breaking the law, she immediately reports this information to Kiu's father, who stops him just in time. After the Hong family are sentenced to death, Fung-yee becomes engaged to Kiu and marries into the family at 18, also bearing Kiu's eldest son, Bit-man. She becomes a favorite of Kiu's parents through her poised choice of words and generosity. The dying wish of Kiu's father was for Bit-man, saying that he wants Bit-man to become the successor of Hing Fung Nin when he becomes older.

For over twenty years, she secures herself as Chiang Kiu's official wife and has strong hopes in seeing her son to be the ultimate successor of Hing Fung Nin. These thoughts become crushed when Po-kei marries into the family as Chiang Kiu's fourth wife. Scheming and manipulative, Fung-yee appears kind and giving to Po-kei initially, but secretly plans for her demise with her son and Cheung-fat. After Kiu announces Po-kei to be the successor of Hing Fung Nin, Fung-yee creates havoc in the family and often uses Kiu's mother, Giu, and Fong in her plans. Although she is aware that her son is too immature to handle the family business, she believes that he has the right to as long as he's the family's eldest son.

Pang Giu (彭嬌)[edit]

Pang Giu (Kiki Sheung, Josephine Shum as youth) is the second wife of Chiang Kiu and younger sister of Pang Hang, a powerful triad figure in Wuxi, who is also in charge of the city's only naval transport. She is the mother of the family's youngest son, Bit-mo.

Ever since she was a teenager,Giu has had strong affections towards Kiu and has hopes of marrying into the Chiang family as his second wife. She becomes devastated when she witnesses Kiu marrying Lau Fong and goes into a state of depression. For her happiness, Hang threatens to not transport his rice, which would result in the closure of Hing Fung Nin, but he still refused, reasoning that he already has two wives. Enraged, Hang tries to stab him; Lau Fong saves him, but she ends up under his blade. When he threatens to kill her, Chiang Kiu finally concedes to marrying Giu. Hang then forces Kiu to write a love letter to Giu. Kiu does, but he adds another condition: Hang has to lower the price of naval transports; he agrees, but only if Giu becomes the second wife. Giu reads the letter and is overjoyed - she then happily marries into the family, pushing Fong to the position of third wife.

She is really protective and watchful of her son, Bit-mo, whom she almost died giving birth to. Straightforward and impulsive, Giu is easily influenced by Fung-yee, who often uses her. When Kiu goes into a coma, Fung-yee offers Giu forty-percent of Hing Fung Nin if she stands on her side, but Giu refuses to betray Kiu's wish. So Fung-yee tells her the story of their marriage terms, and convinces her that she is only used to guard off her brother. Believing that if she doesn't protect herself, nobody will, she agrees. Po-kei later shows her Kiu's journal, where there's a passage describing his struggle to save her during Bit-mo's birth. Conflicted, and knowing that the one Kiu loves is Po-kei, who had a part in saving Bit-mo, she decides to temporarily leave the family for Hangzhou with her son, who is going to take the imperial exam. However, due to a raging war in Hangzhou, while in an attempt to save Bit-mo, she was struck by broken pieces of a bomb, thus leading to her death as well as Kiu's death.

Lau Fong (劉芳)[edit]

Lau Fong (Kara Hui, Summer Joe as youth), is the third wife of Chiang Kiu and the mother of the family's middle child, Bit-ching.

Her father was an owner of a safeguard agency, and since youth she had been practicing martial arts in hopes for taking over her father's business when he retires. One day, she and her father are given a mission to protect Kiu and Hing Fung Nin's rice supply, but are later attacked by bandits. Her father dies saving Kiu, and his dying wish is for Kiu to take care of his daughter. Through the journey of escaping danger, Kiu begins to appreciate Fong and marries her as his second wife. Fong's modest nature believed that Kiu married her out of pity, but he strongly denies it. When Pang Giu marries into the family a few weeks later, Fong is forced to become the third wife, losing the authorities that a second wife holds. Fong is sincere and kind, and finds enjoyment in helping others. However, her timid personality makes her a bullying target for both Yan Fung-yee and Giu. Unlike Fung-yee, she never cares for power and only wants to live a happy and fulfilling life. While initially she pits against Po-kei due to her seniors' influence, she later finds Po-kei admirable and they become great friends.

Hong Po-kei (康寶琦)[edit]

Hong Po-kei (Sheren Tang, Angel Chiang as youth), is the fourth wife of Chiang Kiu, who later becomes the owner of Hing Fung Nin.

Born Hong Po-yin (康寶燕), she was the daughter of Hong Chi-wing, a city mayor who is sincere and cares for his people. When a natural disaster hit Nantong and was starving many people, her father decided to open the military supply trailer to feed them. This was against martial law and resulted in capital punishment, so when they find out an imperial inspector was coming for an unexpected check, she decides to get help from Chiang Kiu, her betrothed, whose father owns a prosperous rice shop called Hing Fung Nin. He immediately agrees to help and promises her that his rice will reach the trailer by midnight. He never came, and her family and many others who were involved were arrested. A head guard admired Chi-wing's actions and put another death-sentenced prisoner in her place; thus, Po-yin successfully escaped punishment. She hides in Prince Rongde's (known as the Iron-cap prince) mansion as a cook under the name Hong Po-kei. Twenty years later, she arrives at Chiang Kiu's manor and the two reconcile. He marries her as his fourth wife and they work together on Hing Fung Nin until his health fails, at which point he lets her be in charge of it. Po-kei struggles with setbacks caused by Fung-yee and Bit-man, who try to regain their former position in both the business and the family. From early on, Po-kei recognizes Chai Kau's wit and works to help him achieve his dream. Po-kei also sees brilliance in Bit-ching, and decides to train him to become the business' successor when she retires. She often puts herself on the line for others and helps solve Wuxi's major problems, and as such, she is well respected.

Chiang Bit-man (蔣必文)[edit]

Chiang Bit-man (Ngo Ka-nin) is the eldest son of Chiang Kiu, and the only son of Fung-yee. He is also the only godson of Lee Cheung-fat. He has always been his grandfather's favorite, as his grandfather's dying wish was for Bit-man to become Hing Fung Nin's successor. Before Po-kei married into the family, he was positive that the family business would be passed to him. As he struggled to remain in power, he is often challenged by the coolie Chai Kau, who claims Bit-man to be treating him and his co-workers poorly. In the end he is burnt to death in Hing Fung Lin's grain warehouse when Cheung-fat fights with him for the fire torch, which falls to the ground with kerosene spilled, resulting in a fire.

Chiang Bit-mo (蔣必武)[edit]

Chiang Bit-mo (Kelvin Leung) is the teenage son of Pang Giu and the youngest child of Chiang Kiu. He is obedient and kind, and also has a skill in studying and reading. Chiang Kiu has no hopes of Bit-mo to become the family successor, reasoning that he is too young, and rather have him study to become an official in the imperial court, bringing glory to the family.

Chiang Bit-ching (蔣必正)[edit]

Chiang Bit-ching (Ron Ng) is the son of Lau Fong and the middle child of Chiang Kiu. Friendly and naive, he is very similar to his mother, who enjoys happiness and freedom. He loves to play, and is very friendly with his co-workers. While he has no desires to become Hing Fung Nin's successor, saying that he has no talent for business, he is later persuaded by Po-kei to fight for the shop as he witnesses his older brother's greed and immaturity. He falls in love with Yau Man, who worked as Po-kei's maid.

Yau Man (丘敏)[edit]

Yau Man (Suki Chui) is Po-kei's personal maid and later wife of Bit-ching. Before she became a maid of the Chiang household, she and her mother were a pair of con artists in the city. She and Bit-ching often bicker, as they were many occasions when Yau Man cheated Bit-ching for money. However, through bickering they began to fall in love, and she later marries Bit-ching as it was Chiang Kiu's dying wish to see his son having a family of his own.

Ngan Yuk-hing (顏玉卿)[edit]

Ngan Yuk-hing (Helen Ma) is Yau Man's mother. Before she worked for the Chiang household, she and her daughter were a pair of con artists in the city.

Other characters[edit]

Chai Kau (柴九)[edit]

Chai Kau (Wayne Lai) is a worker in Hing Fung Nin whose dream is to eventually be able to send carts of rice to his homeland. He is honourable and respected, and has experienced many hardships and suffering due to people such as Bit-Man. He has a close relationship with Po-kei who helps him and defends him with her life; he greatly respects her and often stands up for her. He dies at the end of the final episode from a disease he caught while trying to save Po-kei. Chai Kau's popularity prompted Wayne Lai's rise to fame and he won several awards for this role.

Cast Role Description
Cheung Yick (張翼) Lee Cheung-fat
李祥發
Hing Fung Nin's first assistant boss
Chiang Bit-man's godfather
Chiang family servant
Wayne Lai Chai Kau
柴九
Hing Fung Nin's third assistant boss
Nancy Wu Suen Hoi-tong
孫海棠
Chai Kau's concubine
Kwan Ching (關菁) Sha Tsan-tin
沙震天
Sha family gang leader
Sworn older brother of Ma Hung and Chai Kau
Cheng Kar Sang (鄭家生) Ma Hung
馬雄
Sha family gang second boss
Sworn older brother of Chai Kau and younger brother of Sha Tsan-tin
Lei Seng Cheung Pang Hang
彭鏗
Ching (青) gang leader
Pang Kiu's older brother
Kei Po Lo Doctor Brown
白朗大夫
Missionary
Western doctor
Samuel Kwok (郭峰) Aisin-Gioro· Rong De
愛新覺羅·榮德
Prince / Emperor's brother (王爺)
Wong Chi Yin (黃智賢) Chiu Yat-ming
趙一鳴
General for the Taiping Rebellion
Wong Wai Leung (王偉樑) Hong Chi-wing
康梓榮
Governor
Hong Po-Yin's deceased father
Lee Hung Kit (李鴻杰) Governor Lam
林知府
Governor of Wuxi