TVB is not simply a television station but also a place with countless of secrets such as the rivalry between senior management, the sorrows of its artistes and hidden romances. It causes curiosity and fertile imaginations to the public and ever wonder what are the taboo in TVB?

TVB has more than 4000 employees and everyone must follow the rules. Once disobeyed, the staff will be given either a verbal warning or written warning. A serious punishment leads to termination or blacklisted and it can affect TVB and suffer from a loss.

Apparently, there is a memorandum stating the limits and taboo near the make-up room in TVB issued by TVB Executive, Ms Virginia Lok (樂易玲) and it is evident that the rules must not be broken.

Forbidden to wear tops with vulgarity word

Although it is easy for the public to buy tops with vulgarity word with different designs at the street, but TVB forbade its artiste from wearing it and Ms Lok issued a memorandum with a t-shirt design in 2005. It stated: “Unless you are wearing the company’s costume, you are disallowed to wear tops with vulgarity during the performances which is against the company’s rules.”

Under section 4 rule, language use (言詞運用) in Communications Authority (通訊事務管理局), the artistes are restricted from using inappropriate words involving sensitive and sexual during the shows in prime time slots. Once the offence is committed, Communication Authority has the right to impose a fine to the television station and issue a public apology. The television station’s licence will be revoke for repeated offence.

In 1995, Andy Lau (劉德華) followed the script and spoke vulgarity in TVB Anniversary Gala Show (萬千星輝賀台慶) and it received more than 600 complaints as a result. TVB was fined by the government to pay $100,000 and Andy issued a public apology in the newspaper thereafter. However, the film director refused to admit the mistake and said: “I am not revealing the director’s identity as he may be jobless and I decide to cover for him.”

Forbidden to take photos and record videos in the studio room

In 2010, Ms Lok issued a memorandum to remind all artistes to follow the company’s rule: “It is prohibited to take photos and record videos by using mobile and all camera equipment in the studio room, in order not to affect the filming progress.” However, it is not a very serious taboo since a year ago as several celebrities uploaded photos and video clips to update their work status through big big channel. In addition, an account for Wife Interrupted (救妻同學會) show was set up on Instagram and shared the filming process openly.

Compulsory to remember the costume and accessory for continuous scene in the drama

It is a basic rule for every artiste to remember their costume and accessory for shooting continuous scene in the drama and the production team tries hard not to make the mistake, in order to avoid complaints from the audiences. As TVB releases many drama yearly, it is difficult to remain perfect and the artiste has the obligation to remember their part as well.

In 2016, the management issued a friendly reminder that all artistes must remember their costumes and accessories in the drama so as to assist the crew team and ensure smooth filming progress.

Although poor memory does not result in a harsh penalty, but it relates to the artistes’ professionalism and the images in the company. Damian Lau (劉松仁) is definitely considered a role model as he always writes down about his role character, expression and costumes including the colour, design and number allocated. Once, an assistant film director insisted Damian wore the wrong costume and he corrected him immediately: “I am wearing the correct costume!” After repeated checks, the crew team discovered Damian was right and there was a variety of grey colour.

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