Editor’s note: Showbiz will never stop generating buzz as much as people will never stop gossiping. It may be a rumor, accident or scandal to hit the headlines, but when it involves a celebrity it soon becomes a hot topic. Here, in a chinadaily.com.cn special, we look back at the top 10 entertainment sensations in China in 2010.
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The “lightening marriage” of Taiwan actress Barbie Hsu, 34, to her beau and restaurant heir Wang Xiaofei, 29, is a living example of “love at the first sight”, which dominated newspaper headlines, forums and micro blogs. Just 49 days after their first date the couple registered their marriage in Beijing on November 16. It was billed as romantic fairytale-meets-prank by various members of the public. The curiosity and controversy of their “true love” along with overcoming an age gap reflected the nation’s current mood on marriage. Although many online surveys seem pessimistic about their marriage, only time will truly tell.
Related reading: Love at first sight seems too good to be true for netizens
A horrific explosion on the set of I Have A Date With Spring, in Shanghai, saw Selina Jen of the girl group S.H.E. and actor Yu Haoming suffer extensive burns. This tragic accident would be a turning point for the two promising young stars. Currently both of them are receiving medical therapy, which will reportedly take two years for them to fully recover. The accident was said to have been due to aged explosives, although an investigation is ongoing. Awareness about actors’ safety was greatly raised after this harsh lesson.
Deadly plastic surgery
Pursuing external beauty through medical procedures is painstaking or in some cases deadly. Wang Bei, once a contestant in the popular talent show Super Girl, died on Nov 15 after a complication with anesthetic during plastic surgery. To improve her pop-star looks, Wang risked her life in this hazardous surgery and lost it. Her tragic death served as a wake-up call for the millions who crave artificial beauty in an often-unregulated environment.
Related reading: Beauty has an ugly side
Philanthropy has proved to be rewarding and risky for some. Zhang Ziyi was first accused of donating only part of the claimed 1 million yuan to victims of the earthquake in Sichuan in 2008. It was later revealed that she had not raised anywhere close to this amount at the charity party she held in Cannes for the purpose. In an exclusive interview with China Daily, Zhang vehemently denied accusations that she committed fraud in the name of charity, but admitted to inexperience when organizing a donation drive for the relief of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake.
Related reading: Clearing her name
Secret marriage unveiled
In order to maintain their much-acclaimed image, celebrities tend to purposely veil their privacy. For most it is understandable, but for one former couple, it got on the public’s nerves. At a press briefing on March 27, Hong Kong actress Charlene Choi and singer Ronald Cheng announced their divorce putting their four-year marriage to an end, which immediately hit the headlines and sparked widespread astonishment. The public was kept in the dark about their secret marriage, which even escaped the sharp radar of the paparazzi. This jaw-dropping news also provoked a credit crisis for Charlene who always impressed the public with her very girly image.
Related reading: Top 10 celebrity divorces of 2010
Top diva's comeback
Being away from the spotlight for six years, China’s top diva Faye Wong returned to the stage with 10 concerts in Beijing, Shanghai and other metropolises. Wong’s comeback injected exuberant vitality to the tepid pop concert market, even stirring widespread complaints among her fans for the scarcity of concert tickets. As the most famous singer on China's contemporary pop scene, Wong combines alternative styles, influenced by the Scottish group Cocteau Twins, with more traditional Chinese lyrical ballads. A prosperous box office and ticket demand revealed no sign of a decline in popularity, her iconic influence never faded in the capricious and constantly updating entertainment industry. Although her voice isn’t that clear as before, Wong’s legendary musical career would guarantee her name appears on the page of China’s pop music history.
Related readings: Faye Wong is back, but at a steep price
Faye turns on the charm
Car model's sex photos
A Beijing car model known as "Shoushou" (The Beast) was embroiled in scandal after her ex-boyfriend released online a video of them having sex. Many accused the 23-year-old of exploiting the video to boost her career. Confronted with the accusation, Zhai (her real name) resolutely denied it during an interview with China Daily: "I believe there is not a woman in the world who would truly like to ruin her life-long reputation for commercial exploitation.” Undeniably this scandal made her better known, but Zhai had to taste the bitterness of fame.
Related readings: 'Shoushou' denies rumors of commercial exploitation
'The Beast' denies fame claim
Crosstalk performer's violence scandal
Crosstalk performer Guo Degang, popular across the nation for his standup comedy show that assails the vices of the times, landed in hot water after one of his apprentices beat up a TV reporter who was trying to interview the celebrity at his residence. This incident was a PR disaster for Guo, who was forced to cancel a number of performances and also raised the awareness for better protection for journalists' rights.
Related readings: Zero tolerance to moral degradation
Crosstalk idol apologizes over scuffle at home
Award-winning film director Yan Po was brutally stabbed by premeditated attackers in a parking lot, resulting in bone fractures and a severed Achilles tendon. Yan’s girlfriend, actress Li Xiaoran, appeared at the Chaoyang district police station in Beijing and publicly admitted their relationship for the first time. Subsequently, eight of the suspects were caught by police and two alleged organizers surrendered themselves to police. They claimed to have arranged the attack to punish Yan for dating Li, former girlfriend of their friend.
Related readings: Director is badly cut by gang hired by a jilted lover: Paper
Film director heavily injured in knife attack
An explosive rumor that 29-year-old Fan Bingbing, a famous beauty, and 64-year-old Wang Xueqi, a award-winning veteran, were dating swirled around cyberspace, causing a big stir among the public. It turned out to be false and both of the thespians vehemently denied the gossip, initiating legal proceedings against the rumormongers.
Related reading: Silencing the critics
Produced by Hou Qi