- Chinese title: 志在四方
- pinyin: Zhì Zài Sìfāng
- English title: The Dream Makers
- Episodes: 30
- Broadcast network: MediaCorp Channel 8
- Broadcast period: 24 June 2013 to
- Air time: 9:00-10:00 PM; Monday to Friday
Life is like a show and a show is like a replay of life. The goggle box that is called a television set telecasts gripping drama serials on a daily basis. Isn’t everyone’s life like a show? Who does not fight and struggle between work and family? Who is not affected by the various stages in life and vicissitudes of life? The seemingly splendid life everybody leads in fact hides a life of loneliness. Friends may be many but buddies are few. In the “City of Media”, everyone has his life story. Everyone is a scriptwriter and a producer. How one’s story should end lies in one’s hands…
Zhou Weiyun , heads a variety channel. The aloof Weiyun appears distant all the time. The fact is, she has a problem socializing. Weiyun lives with her demented mother, and younger brother’s family. Although Weiyun’s mother favours son over daughter, Weiyun is still filial to her. Weiyun’s brother is unable to hold down a job and hides the fact that he is financially dependent on Weiyun from his wife. Weiyun’s sister-in-law is a housewife who cannot tolerate Weiyun’s singlehood and often acts like a busybody in arranging dates for her. She grouses against Weiyun and resorts to tricks to make her move out. For her mother’s sake, Weiyun puts up with it for the general good.
Luo Zhiming is Weiyun’s boyfriend of 10 years. Zhiming’s job takes him to different countries all the time, leaving them little time together. Friends suspect that Zhiming is a married man but Weiyun firmly believes that he will not deceive her. His marital status is finally revealed to Weiyun on one occasion. Reeling from the shock, Weiyun realizes that she has been the third party in the dark for 10 years. Weiyun initiates a breakup, but Zhiming pleads with her not to leave him, claiming that he has a strained relationship with his wife and will divorce her. Caught between morality and love, Weiyun waits for him helplessly. When rumours of Weiyun being the third party spreads and fingers point to her as the mistress, she suffers in silence. Finally, Zhiming tells Weiyun that he and his wife are divorced, however, the woman he wants to marry is a girl whom he has known for only one month! Like a bolt of lightning, Weiyun slides into the abyss of misery. It is at this time that Weiyun’s good friend and partner Yu Fan enters into her world.
Yu Fan is a Professor of Psychology cum eloquent celebrity host. He hosts a programme that resonates with the people, thereby guaranteeing high TV ratings. Yu Fan has no dearth of women around him, yet none has captured his heart. He is suspected of being a gay, and that the women surrounding him are only a smokescreen. The truth is, Yu Fan had a wife who contracted lupus. Sapped from taking care of her and feeling that his wife would hinder his career, Yu Fan was bent on divorcing her. After the divorce, his wife died due to her ailment. Thereafter, Yu Fan fears entering into another relationship out of remorse. To cover up his guilt, he pretends to be a happy-go-lucky person. Ever since he witnesses Weiyun hurt by love, his empathy towards her turns into love. Unfortunately, the fear of being trapped in the web of love again makes them determined to suppress their love for each other. He can only eye her with interest.
Yu Fan’s reputation takes a beating after reporters reveal what he did to his wife. The ratings for his programme drop drastically and his career hits rock bottom. Weiyun faces tremendous pressure and is threatened by her subordinate. As a result, she fails to turn up for the funeral of her brother who died suddenly from a heart attack… Weiyun ponders over the meaning of life, and no longer wishes to waste the rest of her life struggling hard for her job. She finally confesses to Yu Fan that she is willing to give up everything to lead an ordinary life.
Reigning supreme in the drama channel is Yao-Zhu Kangli. Nicknamed “Drama Queen”, her speech and life are ever so dramatic. Being a perfectionist makes her life tormenting. Yao Jianguo, Kangli’s husband, is a well-known plastic surgeon who often cheats on her. Kangli is aware of her husband’s philandering way but puts up with it as long as he loves only her. Their six-year-old son is diagnosed with autism. To save face, Kangli hides his condition from everyone and bears the brunt of her son’s behavior by herself. Kangli tries very hard to play the role of a good wife, mother and supervisor until she finds out that Jianguo has gone overboard by falling in love with another woman. She suffers a breakdown and decides to confront her own failure. She sets out to reconcile with Jianguo and stops hiding her son’s condition. Unfortunately, her husband wants a divorce so that he can be with the third party.
Jianguo is in fact adopting an escapist attitude by taking this decision. He feels a sense of failure over his son’s autism, and cannot face his family. His extramarital affair is an excuse to divorce himself from the world and numb himself. After separating from Kangli, Jianguo spends a period of time feeling lost. With help from his good friend Yu Fan, he gradually regains his old self and makes a great effort to win his wife’s heart back. Unable to forgive her husband, Kangli becomes cynical. She is particularly hostile towards Weiyun who has been accused of being a marriage-breaker, and makes many enemies. However, it is Weiyun who gets Kangli out of trouble when she keeps making mistakes at work. Kangli feels her colleague’s concern and begins to let her armour down. Finally, after losing her position, she sees the light. For the sake of her son, she chooses to accept the repentant Jianguo. The family is reunited, and she settles down to being a contented housewife devoted to her husband and son.
Super career women face pressure from all fronts while the young struggle in their career. Zhao Fei-er is a very hardworking second-tier to third-tier artiste waiting hard for her big break. Fei-er comes from a broken family; her mother is an adulteress while her father is a useless bum who drinks and gambles. The only person she considers a family member is the paternal grandmother who dotes on her. Fei’er vows to leave her past life behind and works very hard in her acting job. Finally, she rises to become a first-tier actress, thanks to Kangli’s recognition of her talent. Jason is Fei-er’s boyfriend from her university days. An outstanding director, he ardently supports her dream. In order to take care of, and protect his girlfriend, Jason becomes a freelance director at the TV station. Fei-er starts to change after her new-found fame. An inferiority complex makes her hide the truth of their relationship. She even hides the fact that her father is a drunkard and her paternal grandmother is living in an old folks’ home from the media. Fei-er’s hectic schedule leaves her no time to look after her grandmother. She has no choice but to place her in an old folks’ home. When her grandmother is critically ill and dies, Fei-er is in the midst of filming and fails to attend her funeral. She feels guilty and this makes her even more determined to be successful. It pains Jason to see Fei-er fighting hard to gain fame and fortune. Their relationship takes an unexpected turn because of opposing views.
At this time, Fang Tonglin, producer of Variety Unit, falls in love with Jason at first sight, the reason being that he looks uncannily like her late faithful father. Tonglin and Jason hit it off real well. She supports him in many ways after finding out about his problematic relationship. Her unwavering admiration for Jason’s disregard for conventions ends in a one-sided love affair that she tries very hard to sustain. A stroke of luck lands Tonglin a spot on TV which is widely received by viewers and she even gains an acting role. By now a celebrity, Fei-er views Tonglin’s presence as a threat. After Tonglin’s transformation, Du Zhanpeng, Head of Artiste Liaison Unit, makes the surprise move of courting her. A product of Singapore’s elite system, Zhanpeng has never tasted failure. Touched by his earnest courtship, Tonglin accepts his love.
Gao Jian, a wealthy heir, has eyes for Fei-er. He showers her with a number of advertising contracts to endorse products, sponsors her programmes, chauffeurs her around in a luxury car, provides a listening ear to her and stands up for her secretly. His actions touched Fei-er tremendously. As she gradually realizes that hard work is not enough to get one far in showbiz, Fei-er learns to curry favour to establish relationships and lean on Gao Jian as her backer. Jason senses that he is drifting apart from Fei-er. On the other hand, he seems to click with Tonglin because they share the same views. Unable to contain his anger anymore, Jason confronts Fei-er on her relationship with the heir. Fei-er is incensed, and decides to break off with Jason to be with Gao Jian.
This is a big blow to Jason and he sinks into misery. Tonglin’s tender loving care of him finally makes Zhanpeng see that his girlfriend’s heart is with Jason. The bitter Zhanpeng gives up on Tonglin and because of her, his friendship with Jason is strained. Not only is Zhanpeng’s love life in the pits, his personal life is in shambles after a legal suit ruins him. At this juncture, Xiao Lixia, enters his life. A sales manager, Lixia is Zhanpeng’s good friend. After counselling him on the notion that success comes after failure,
Zhanpeng no longer seeks perfection, and begins a relationship with the twice-divorced Lixia.
Jason is devastated after being jilted by Fei-er. Life has totally lost its meaning for him. With Tonglin constantly by his side encouraging and consoling him, he picks himself up again. For a period of time, he devotes himself into his work, produces a number of commendable programmes, wins the award for Best Director in consecutive years and receives offers from international movie directors. On finding out that Tonglin is secretly in love with him, he is touched and accepts her love. Tonglin is finally together with Jason. Their relationship blossoms. But Tonglin senses that, compared with Fei-er, Jason is less loving towards her. This is especially obvious when Fei-er is in their presence, and Jason somehow behaves awkwardly. Tonglin feels that she is always placed in a helpless situation to the extent of having to betray her own principles. Fearing that she may end up like people around her who, in the pursuit of fame and fortune, lose themselves and deviate from their dreams. Thus, Tonglin chooses to withdraw from showbiz at the height of her fame to resume her role as a director. Hurt by love, the uncompromising Jason is bent on becoming a celebrated director and in the process, causes his benefactor Kangli to lose her job. Kangli and Weiyun, who have been hardened by their life experiences, advises Jason not to follow in their footsteps of losing himself. Jason starts to examine his life and decides to rein himself in before it is too late.
The Gao family cannot accept Fei-er. Gao Jian is under pressure to break off with Fei-er and marry a rich man’s daughter. Fei-er loses hope in herself and turns malicious. A string of scandalous news causes her popularity to go downhill. Feeling extremely empty and succumbing under the strain of criticisms, she knows that remaining in Singapore is no longer possible. She claims to have gone to Hong Kong to develop her career, but ends up miserably as an extra. Estranged from her kin and kith, and suffering untold loneliness, Fei-er regrets losing herself for the sake of fame and fortune. She still loves Jason, but considers herself unworthy of him. The sight of Fei-er in such a sorry state pierces his heart… Tonglin is perfectly aware that Jason has never stopped loving Fei-er. She is determined to fulfill his wish, but tells him that if he ever needs her, he should know where to look for her. Faced with two women who have an emotional hold on him, who will his heart go to?
In the mundane world, everyone wears a mask in his life
What is more tragic is not the inability to pull off one’s mask but forgetting that one is still wearing it. How many people have lost themselves, yet do not have the courage to seek their original self?
- Zoe Tay as 周薇芸 Zhou Weiyun
- Chen Li Ping as 姚朱康莉 Yao-Zhu Kangli
- Rui En as 方彤琳 Fang Tonglin
- Jeanette Aw as 赵非儿 Zhao Fei'er
- Qi Yuwu as Jason Lam Qinhui
- Shaun Chen as 杜展鹏 Du Zhanpeng
- Chen Han Wei as 余凡 Yu Fan
- Guo Liang as 姚建国 Yao Jianguo
- Richard Low as 赵德 Zhao De
- Desmond Tan as 高建 Gao Jian
- Rebecca Lim as 萧丽霞 Lisa Xiao Lixia
- May Phua as 许贵香 Xu Guixiang
- Ian Fang as 周耀祖 Joey Zhou Yaozu
- Jayley Woo as 裴晓晴 Rain Pei Xiaoqing