Brands drop Chinese-American singer Wang Leehom after ex-wife’s exposure to extramarital affairs

Singer Leehom Wang (front) performs during his tour at Taipei Arena in Taipei, southeast China’s Taiwan, June 8, 2019 (Photo: Xinhua)

After Chinese-American singer-songwriter Wang Leehom, who had been hailed as a “high-quality idol” for years, was exposed by his ex-wife for having extramarital affairs, for abusing her emotionally and solicited from prostitutes, among other unethical behavior, overnight he was abandoned as a spokesperson for several brands and came under heavy criticism from internet users.

Late Friday evening, Wang’s ex-wife Li Jinglei posted a lengthy article on Sina Weibo, in which she said Wang was cheating on her, transferred marital property, had affairs with married people and the had emotionally abused her to force her into a divorce.

Li’s article caused a stir when it was posted on social media. At the time of publication, the article had received 6.61 million likes on Weibo. Thousands of netizens joined the discussion on the topic, and many joked that the Oscar owed Wang a statuette because he had played the role of a “high-quality idol” for so many years.

After his debut in 1995, Wang gained many fans for his charming face, innovative music, and the image he and his company have built for themselves as “high-quality idols” – with little scandal.

Wang is currently based in Taiwan. He was formally trained at Eastman School of Music, Williams College and Berklee College of Music, his musical style is known to merge Chinese elements, such as Peking Opera, with hip-hop and R&B. . He also starred in several popular films, including Ang Lee Lust, prudence and Jackie Chan Little big soldier.

In 2013, Wang posted a photo of himself and Li, then a doctoral student, and for the first time revealed to the public that Li was his girlfriend. The two married in 2013 and later had two daughters, aged 7 and 5, and a 3-year-old son.

Wang confirmed in a Facebook post on Wednesday that he and his wife for eight years had filed for divorce.

In his article published on Friday, Li recalled many details of their married life, which not only fanned Wang’s image as a good man, but also showed that he showed no respect for the sacrifice. of his wife. Li also noted that Wang and his team also manipulated opinions to cut negative news and scandals to help keep him looking good.

Li reminded the women to prevent any risk in the event that they become a housewife who lacks an independent source of income and may face forced divorce, which struck a chord among netizens.

Besides the heat on social media platforms on the Chinese mainland, the Wang scandal has also sparked heated discussions in Hong Kong and the island of Taiwan, where netizens have also reacted with disappointment.

Two hours after Li published the article, Japanese car brand Infiniti announced on Saturday morning that it would end the cooperative relationship with Wang, ending the business deal that had only lasted two days. Infiniti was the first brand to take such a step.

Wang was officially announced as the brand’s spokesperson on December 16, according to a screenshot from Infiniti China’s official Weibo account.

Later, Readboy, one of the largest manufacturers of e-learning products in China, announced on Saturday that it has decided to end the cooperative relationship with Wang.

Chow Tai Seng Jewelery Co said on Saturday that the advertising cooperation agreement with Wang had expired on November 30, 2021 and that there would be no further cooperation.

Hong Kong-based Green Monday, which supplies plant-based meat maker Beyond Meat with products across Asia, also announced that the company and its two brands – Green Common and OMNI – will end their business cooperation. with Wang from Saturday.

Many Chinese netizens urged brands to end their cooperation with Wang because celebrities who “lack ethics” or violate laws should not be spokespersons.

In November, China’s top internet regulator said it would establish a negative list to prevent celebrity-related content from promoting distorted values, including anomalous aesthetics, vulgar scandals, and content that makes fans blindly idolize. celebrities or who tout the return of artists who have illegal and unethical records.

Meanwhile, the China Performing Arts Association also released the Ninth Warning List in November for live performances covering 88 celebrities, including former Chinese-Canadian pop idol Kris Wu Yifan who was arrested for rape. , actress Zheng Shuang who was fined for tax evasion, and actor Zhang Zhehan who visited Japan’s Yasukuni shrine which is home to war criminals from World War II.

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