Fri, Feb 18, 2005 - Page 14 News List

POP STOP

By Max Woodworth  /  STAFF REPORTER

Taiwanese men would love a bite of this -- Hou Pei-tsen. .

PHOTO: TAIPEI TIMES

The advent of the Year of the Rooster brought with it reams of speculation on the local gossip pages about local stars' fortunes, good and bad, for the year to come. For most of the stars, this year will apparently offer more of the same -- meaning celebrities who are down, such as Momoko Tao (陶晶瑩) and Vivian Hsu (徐若瑄), will continue to be down and should consider prospects abroad, while hot stars like David Tao and Andy Lau (劉德華) will continue to ride high.

Among those who'd best watch their back for lurking, ill-intentioned ghosts is Faye Wong (王菲), who, as a rooster zodiac sign is on a base year for her lunar cycle and as a result will be particularly prone to unpredictable events -- though that isn't always bad. Her prosperity index, however, is sky high for this year. Selina of SHE will have to pay attention this year to protecting her feet, while TV host Zhang Fei's (張菲) luck might be slightly down, including in the romance arena, where there will a lot of talk but not much action. Nothing new there, then.

Speaking of romance, the past week also included Valentine's Day, which meant the paparazzi were hiding in the bushes hoping to catch the local celebrities out on the town with their significant others. The biggest catch of the day was of Jay Chou (周杰倫) and TV anchorwoman Hou Pei-tsen (侯佩岑), who reportedly spent some intimate time on vacation in Japan over the weekend. The two have tried to shrug off any speculation of a romantic link, but haven't denied meeting up in Japan. If the rumors prove true, Jay will be the envy of Taiwanese men, who in a recent Internet poll on the 1111 job search Web site rated Hou as the most desirable woman in Taiwan, ahead of supermodel Lin Chih-ling (林志玲).

In film news, the organizing committee of the Oscars announced last week that Zhang Ziyi (章子怡) will be an award presenter at the ceremony set to take place next Sunday. Her selection to present an award is an early tip of the hat to the actress after House of Flying Daggers (十面埋伏) came away empty handed at the British Film Awards over the weekend.

Taiwanese film is sure to make a splash this week at the Berlin International Film Festival when Tsai Ming-liang's (蔡明亮) The Wayward Cloud (天邊一朵雲) plays in the competition. Known for his stark view of urban life, the film's press material features two of the film's stars, Lee Kang-sheng (李康生) and Lu Yi-ching (陸亦靜), stark naked engaged in some rough-looking hanky panky in the shower. Tsai told local media before leaving for Berlin with his cast that the film might shock some and judging from the photo stills, he's probably right.

For lighter film fare, a spokesperson for Stephen Chow (周星馳) announced last week that the director plans to shoot a sequel to Kung Fu Hustle (功夫), which has shattered Hong Kong box-office records, earning US$7.8 million. Consider yourself warned.

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