Oh dear. Zhang Ziyi, one of China’s biggest film stars and a three-time Bafta nominee is the latest celebrity to fall under heavy media scrutiny. Of all ridiculous claims, news are now reporting that she has, in the past, prostituted herself to disgraced politician Bo Xilai and other Chinese Communist officials.
If there’s one thing we already know, it’s the fact that upcoming stars in the Asian region do sometimes find themselves in situations where they are forced to “perform” things that are against the will. Corruption, they call it. One such incident has previously led a popular Korean starlet to her suicide.
According to the reports in China, the beautiful oriental-princess-like Zhang Ziyi was introduced to Bo Xilai by Xu Ming (a Chinese businessman who is estimated to be worth around £444million). And that since then, she has slept with Bo at least ten times (between 2007 and 2011) in exchange for monetary “gifts”.
All these claims about Zhang and Bo are coming directly from the horse’s mouth aka 41-year-old Xu Ming himself.
There were also claims that she earned £64million by prostituting herself to a string of powerful Chinese men.
Chinese tabloids can be vicious but for the first time, 32-year-old Zhang Ziyi has been deeply disturbed and visibly upset with what is being reported. During a press conference after the 12th Chinese Film Media Awards in Haikou, she addressed the media directly and said, “I’d like to thank everyone for their concern. I really want to tell everyone my attitude about this. This news is a complete lie. Both within the article and between the lines, there were contemptuous lies. I met with my lawyers in Hong Kong and clearly expressed my position.”
“Whatever the cost, I will seek legal recourse and pursue this matter to the very end. I read a lot of comments from people who don’t know the truth and they think this film industry is like that – rife with unsavoury dealings. This time, these irresponsible reports have not only hurt me, but maligned the film industry. And worse of all, they made use of such hot topics to fool the public”, she added.
We hear that the Chinese government has refused to allow Zhang Ziyi to leave the country while investigators look into claims that her supposedly illicit earnings escaped tax.
But good on you, Zhang Ziyi! We applaud you for standing up to false claims.