I realized that we've talked about quite a few female celebrities in China but I have sort of unintentionally neglected the other sex. So, Andy Lau, the most searched, most popular male singer/actor in China, is today's topic.
Every time I see that anti-piracy commercial featuring Jacky Chan and the respectable governor of California, I can't help but wonder if the marketing people really know their audience. Yes, Jacky Chan may be the most well known Chinese actor in the West, but he is no where near as popular as Andy Lau is in Asia. Jacky Chan is really ugly, I am sorry, and he is known for womanizing. Andy Lau, on the other hand, is incredibly good looking and has a clean, boy scout-like image. Who do you think the Chinese women will choose?
Andy is actually from Hong Kong and has fans all over Asia and possibly the whole world. Of course there is a very detailed description of Andy on Wikipedia (although I don't think that photo does him justice), but I can summarize his success factors succinctly:
- Incredibly good-looking (sorry to repeat but it is quite essential), manly not boyish, a little metrosexual but not too much.
- Shockingly young and fit for his age (45!) but he doesn't look disgusting or he is trying too hard. Good dress sense.
- Professional and never act stupid or say anything stupid. Nice to the media people.
- Patriotic (of utmost importance for the Mainland Chinese). Many of his songs have nationalistic and patriotic elements. I notice that he always sings the song "Chinese People" at all major festival celebrations in China. Seems to be extremely taken by the Mainlanders. (He never sings this song in Taiwan....)
- Forever single. Although it is an open secret that he is married to a rich girl in Malaysia, he never admits it. It's very smart of him to maintain a good relationship with the media people: they don't seem to want to question his private life at all.
If you have never seen Andy Lau's performance, I suggest that you start with the movie "Infernal Affairs" which is the original story that "The Departed" was based on. Andy Lau plays the bad guy, the one played by Matt Damon in the Hollywood remake. Many people who have seen both productions say the original was much better. You can judge it for yourself, and see if Andy Lau is just all looks.
Andy Lau's Official Fan Club Website
Andy Lau sings "Chinese People"