Fan Bingbing overthrows Jay Chou as most influential celebrity on Forbes China Celebrity 100 list

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Forbes China has ranked celebrities from the Greater China region in its 10th annual star power list. The list is aggregated by the magazine based on factors such as print and digital media exposure and income.

Apparently not one to highlight gender differences, the Associated Press calls her a “local heartthrob.” Actress Fan Bingbing jumps two places from 2012 to take the crown as China’s top celebrity from Jay Chou, this year’s runner-up, according to Forbes China. This is the first time since Yao Ming‘s six-year streak, from 2004-2009, that a Mainland Chinese celebrity has topped the list. The top 100 combined suffered an 11% paycut this year, earning ¥482,600,600 less than the previous year. Nevertheless, the stars still took home more than ¥3.8 billion, or around US$613 million. Donnie Yen is this year’s highest earning celebrity, adding ¥115 million to his pockets.

The list further fuels celebrity tabloid rivalries as Fan Bingbing’s (1) red carpet attention and upcoming Hollywood roles outshine Zhang Ziyi (5) as Western media’s Chinese actress of choice. Fellow Bingbing, Li, drops from 20 to 26.

Jay Chou (2) again beats out Wang Leehom (12), despite Wang’s currently ongoing, successful world tour. And Li Yundi (55) plays second fiddle to fellow classical pianist Lang Lang (51). Meanwhile, Super Girl Chris Li (15) outperforms Jane Zhang (45) undeterred by Zhang’s bigger bank account.
Similarly, Jet Li (41) lined his pockets more than higher-ranked kung fu superstar Jackie Chan (4).

Actor Takeshi Kaneshiro, the go-to face in Asia for men’s luxury goods, drops off the list after a slow descent over previous years. His touted successor, Godfrey Gao, is also absent from the list.

Author Mo Yan (16) storms onto the list for the first time, thanks to his Nobel Prize in literature (and accompanying $1.2 million in prize money). And Yang Mi (7) cements herself as one of China’s tops actresses, jumping from 13th place last year, and 92nd the in 2011.

Rank Name   Income (million RMB) Income (million USD) Income rank
1 Fan Bingbing 范冰冰 110 17.6 2
2 Jay Chou 周杰伦 104.2 16.7 3
3 Andy Lau 刘德华 47 7.5 21
4 Jackie Chan 成龙 66 10.6 13
5 Zhang Ziyi 章子怡 59.5 9.5 16
6 Eason Chan 陈奕迅 70.1 11.2 12
7 Yang Mi 杨幂 43.7 7.0 28
8 Huang Xiaoming 黄晓明 75.9 12.1 9
9 Jolin Tsai 蔡依林 110.2 17.6 4
10 Lin Chi-ling 林志玲 49 7.8 20

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Mo Yan wins the 2012 Nobel Literature Prize

The author who is perhaps best known for his tale of “Red Sorghum”  that has been cinematically recaptured by director Zhang Yimou, Mo Yan became the first Chinese national to win a Nobel literature prize.  The committee described him as one “who with hallucinatory realism merges folk tales, history and the contemporary.” Congrats to him, although I’m generally not a big fan of the non-science Nobel prizes.

“His win makes him the first Chinese writer to win the Nobel in its 111-year history: although Gao Xingjian won in 2000, and was born in China, he is now a French citizen, and although Pearl Buck took the prize in 1938, for “her rich and truly epic descriptions of peasant life in China and for her biographical masterpieces”, she is an American author.”