Kris Wu, One of China’s Biggest Stars, Facing a #MeToo Storm


Chinese-Canadian singer Kris Wu with a large following has cut ties with several major luxury brands after an 18-year-old accused her and other young women of targeting and coercing them for sex.

The accusations, which Mr. Wu denied in multiple statements, triggered widespread public outrage and plunged his career into turmoil. At least 11 companies, including Louis Vuitton, Bulgari, Porsche and L’Oréal, have suspended or terminated their contracts with Mr. Wu this week.

Mr. WuAt the age of 30, she rose to fame as a member of the K-pop group EXO and had over 50 million fans online and lucrative endorsement deals before embarking on a solo career as a model, actress, and singer. Known as Wu Yifan in China, she is one of the country’s most popular celebrities facing #MeToo accusations.

Mr. Wu’s accuser is Du Meizhu, a university student in Beijing. She said she first met him when she was 17. According to her social media posts, she said she was invited to Mr. Wu’s house by her manager, with the suggestion that she could help with her acting career. Interview with Netease, an online portal. Once there, she said she was pressured to drink cocktails until she lost consciousness, and then she found herself in bed.

Ms. Du said she believes this is a tactic she uses to attract other young women. He accused Mr. Wu of looking at women as if they were concubines in the harem. “You look at a lot of pictures of girls at drinking parties and you pick them out like merchandise,” she wrote in a social media post, addressing her directly.

Mr. Wu denied the charges through his lawyer Zhai Jiayu and public statements. On Monday, Mr. Wu said that he only met with Ms. Du once in December of last year.

“I declare that choosing a concubine never happened!” he is Wrote on the social media platform Weibo, he referred to Ms. Du’s commentary on the harem. She has denied seducing, drugging or raping anyone. “Please don’t worry if there is such behavior, I will go to jail alone!”

He has a lawyer sworn to sue Against Ms. Du and report her to the police for slander. Ms. Du also said she reported her accusations to the police.

Ms. Du and Mr. Wu did not respond to emailed requests for comment.

Ms. Du’s statement was met with support, a sign of the growing strength of the country’s small Me Too movement. One of his posts on Weibo has been liked by more than 10 million users. Hashtags like #girlshelpgirls and others who want Mr. Wu to quit show business have been viewed by millions.

Ms. Du’s supporters flooded several brands’ social media pages with threats of boycotts if they did not terminate their sponsorship deals with Mr. Wu. One by one, brands took action to move away from him.

“This event shows that nowadays people will no longer swallow insults and humiliations and fear sluts being shamed,” said Feng Yuan, a feminist academic and activist. “People increasingly want to speak up and be heard.”

#MeToo activism can be tough in China, where the ruling Communist Party imposes strict restrictions on opposition and public debate. Some featured women accounts of abuse faced a people and legal response. Authorities often deter women for reporting rape and other sexual crimes.

It was unclear how the authorities planned to respond to the allegations against Mr. Wu, but at least three government-affiliated groups made statements calling for an investigation.

“Everyone is equal before the law, and celebrities with a large following are no exception,” wrote the China Women’s News social media page, a newspaper of a state-run women’s group. “Believe that the law will not persecute the good nor release the bad.”

Ms. Du first started speaking when she was released on July 8. screenshots of conversations between himself and Mr. Wu and the people he says work for him. He accused them of attracting young women by shaking up opportunities in show business.

In a screenshot from July of last year, someone who reached out to Ms. Du on Weibo asked her if she wanted to work in the film industry. The person then added their contact to WeChat, a chat app, and asked if he had just completed the university entrance exam, saying that he was working in Mr. Wu’s studio and was looking for new talents.

Ms. Du said she felt helpless when she learned that Mr. Wu was specifically targeting young women like her. “Actually, we are all softhearted when we see your innocent expression, but that doesn’t mean we want to be toys that you can fool!” he is Wrote in a post on Weibo.

Shortly after that, another colleague of Mr. Wu’s contacted him on WeChat, saying that he offered money, which he thought was silent, to remove the post. When he requested a public apology from Mr. Wu, the partner said they were considering taking legal action against him. screenshots of the chat published on the Internet. He said 500,000 yuan, or about $80,000, was later. transferred to his bank He gave an account even though he didn’t give consent.

In an interview with Netease on Sunday, Ms. Du said she has started returning the money in batches and is preparing for a legal fight.

When Ms. Du detailed her first encounter with Mr. Wu, she said she was told that she would discuss potential business. He said he tried to leave, but his staff took his phone and warned that if Mr. Wu didn’t have a good time, it could hurt his future as an actor.

He said he was forced to drink heavily, and eventually slept with Mr. Wu. They dated until March when he stopped responding to his calls and messages, according to his description of the events.

Since then, she said she has heard from seven more women who have been treated similarly. He said he wanted to fight for their interests as well. He did not identify other people, and the charges were not immediately confirmed.

Ms. Du said she has been the target of cyberbullying and death threats since she went public, and that she has been diagnosed with depression. Mr. Wu’s The international fan club said in a post: On Weibo: “Sad to see a baseless internet drama turn into an evil carnival that violates reality and the law.”

But several others on social media this week posted messages of support, including screenshots of conversations that Mr. Wu or his staff said were inappropriately targeting young women.

“Girls, please protect yourself,” wrote Zhang Dansan, a former member of a girl group. on Weibo on Monday.After sharing screenshots of conversations where Mr. Wu said he showed how she asked him if he was a virgin. “I want to be loved too, but don’t be deceived.”


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