Chinese director claims actor Jet Li to be blacklisted by Beijing for having foreign citizenship

·2-min read
Chinese director Zhou Guogang claimed martial arts actor Jet Li is the next person to be cancelled after actress Vicki Zhao. ― Picture via Instagram/ jetli
Chinese director Zhou Guogang claimed martial arts actor Jet Li is the next person to be cancelled after actress Vicki Zhao. ― Picture via Instagram/ jetli

KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 1 ― A Chinese director has claimed martial arts actor Jet Li is next to be blacklisted by Beijing purportedly for holding foreign citizenship.

Zhou Guogang, who previously posted celebrity gossip on his Douyin account, based his revelation on a list by China's National Radio and Television Administration.

The unverified list claimed that there will be new restrictions on celebrities who hold foreign citizenship.

Besides 58-year-old Li, Zhou also named stars such as actor Huang Xiaoming and actress Li Bingbing.

Zhou had sounded the warning to Li early this week, Singapore's Straits Times reported.

“Quickly flee. Next month, the house may just collapse on you,” Zhou reportedly said.

Besides Li who holds Singaporean citizenship, other names include actress Liu Yifei (American), actors Nicholas Tse (Canadian), Zhang Tielin (British) and Mark Chao (Canadian), and singers Will Pan (US) and Wang Leehom (US).

Actress Vicki Zhao, 45, had her name removed from video streaming sites last week as Beijing stepped up its campaign against celebrity culture.

Zhao had her name removed from the credits of major TV series, and a forum dedicated to the actress on social media platform Weibo was also shut down.

No official reason was given.

Both she and husband Huang You Long were banned from trading on the Shanghai Stock Exchange earlier this year, following a failed 2016 takeover bid that the authorities ruled had “disrupted market order”.

The action was the latest from China as authorities continue to rein in what it calls “chaotic fan culture” and celebrity excess, after a spate of scandals that have taken down China's biggest entertainers including hip hop singer Kris Wu, who was arrested on suspicion of rape in August.

Zhao, who is a Singapore permanent resident, owns a vineyard in Bordeaux, France with her billionaire husband, Huang Youlong, and is rumoured to have fled there.

She had posted three photos on Instagram on Sunday, with a caption that implied she was in Beijing.

The pictures were however deleted later.

She also changed her bio to just three words in Chinese: “Ha ha ha.”

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