China cancels Little Swallow Vicki Zhao, Word Of Honor star Zhang Zhehan and cracks down on entertainment industry: #PopVultures Ep 52

  • 23 Sep 2021

#PopVultures Ep 52: China cancels Little Swallow Vicki Zhao, Word Of Honor star Zhang Zhehan and cracks down on entertainment industry 48:21 mins Synopsis: The Straits Times examines the ins and outs of pop culture in the Asian entertainment and Hollywood scene. In this episode, host Jan Lee is joined by The Straits Times' China correspondent Aw Cheng Wei as they discuss the recent spate of state-sanctioned cancellations of A-list celebrities in China. They delve into two case studies. The first is popular boys' love drama Word Of Honor star Zhang Zhehan, who was erased off the face of Chinese entertainment after photos of him visiting Japan's controversial Yasukuni Shrine surfaced. Yasukuni Shrine houses Class A war criminals from World War II. The second is the abrupt and mysterious cancellation of Vicki Zhao, best known for her role in seminal period drama My Fair Princess, which has fuelled vigorous speculation. They share their thoughts on the Chinese authorities' efforts to clamp down on celebrities who are seen as stepping out of line. Next, they discuss China's increasing efforts to clean up its entertainment scene, after it shut down idol production competitions, curtailed fan clubs and voting activities on social media, condemned toxic fandom culture, criticised the popularity of boys love dramas and "effeminate" male stars. They share their thoughts and insights on what considerations have fuelled this industry-wide clampdown. Here's a quick look at what they cover: A brief introduction on China's recent entertainment earthquake (0:42) A rundown of the cancellation of Zhang Zhehan and Vicki Zhao (4:08) Jan and Cheng Wei reflect on these two cases and the differing ways Chinese celebrities can be cancelled (10:21) A brief introduction of Chinese authorities' recent moves in cleaning up its entertainment industry (25:12) Jan and Cheng Wei share their thoughts on what is behind the heightened restrictions, curbs and censorship in Chinese entertainment (27:25) Produced by: Jan Lee (janlee@sph.com.sg) & Penelope Lee Edited by: Penelope Lee & Hadyu Rahim Subscribe to #PopVultures Podcast series and rate us on your favourite audio apps: Channel: https://str.sg/JWad Apple Podcasts: https://str.sg/JWaA Google Podcasts: https://str.sg/Ju47  Spotify: https://str.sg/JWaP  Website: http://str.sg/stpodcasts Feedback to: podcast@sph.com.sg Follow Jan Lee on Instagram: https://str.sg/Jbxc Read Jan Lee's stories: https://str.sg/Jbxp --- Discover more ST podcast series: Green Pulse Podcast: https://str.sg/JWaf Health Check Podcast: https://str.sg/JWaN ST Sports Talk Podcast: https://str.sg/JWRE Life Weekend Picks Podcast: https://str.sg/JWa2 #PopVultures Podcast: https://str.sg/JWad Bookmark This! Podcast: https://str.sg/JWas Lunch With Sumiko Podcast: https://str.sg/J6hQ Discover BT Podcasts: https://bt.sg/pcPL Follow our shows then, if you like short, practical podcasts! See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.