China and Singapore are already in on Jay Chou's (周杰倫) Secret (不能說的秘密) so there won't be many surprises when the film gets its nationwide release tonight in Taiwan (see p17 for the review). Pop Stop has seen some of the rushes and basically, Chairman Chou (周董) directs himself, playing himself, in a celluloid diary of self-love worthy of a latter-day Dorian Gray.
The 28-year-old plays a music student at his alma mater, Tamkang high school in Danshui. True to his bio, he has problems at home growing up and tinkling the ivories is a form of escapism. According to interviews, his first love (after himself) is the inspiration for the movie.
"It happened when I was about 14," he told Channel Newsasia. "On her birthday, I brought her to a park, told her to close her eyes and then set off some firecrackers. It was like a scene from a movie." Not surprisingly, the self-absorbed pyromaniac was dumped. "She broke up with me saying the exams were near."
Pop Stop's difficulty here is that his pursuit of a schoolgirl looks perverse. Chou is old enough to need a rug that covers his receding fringe, and expects us to feel comfortable with him pursuing and kissing a girl in uniform (played by Guey Lun-mei (桂綸鎂). Surely, even Oscar Wilde is turning uncomfortably in his grave.
The movie had its Taipei premiere on Tuesday, when The Chairman warned hacks' criticism would be noted and preclude invitation to future openings. Pop Stop, it is safe to assume, will not be on the list, but recalls the advice given in Dorian Gray. "There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about."
The price for lunch with Pace Wu (吳佩慈), according to a Hong Kong mama san, is NT$1.25 million. She doesn't need the money, however, as she has taken ET Mall for a NT$7 million ride. Next Magazine said Eastern Multimedia Group (EMG) paid out this sum for the Taiwanese model to publicize its fashion and shopping Web site.
But Wu refused to play ball. When she was asked to disport herself near naked in a pile of designer bags she instead turned up in a gauzy, white outfit. She was requested to model bras, but would only wear a nightshirt. They asked her to write a blog, but she couldn't find anything to say. This so enraged EMG it banned her and other models from her agency, like Vivian Hsu (徐若瑄), from appearing on its TV programs. Hell hath no fury like a media giant scorned.
Chen Yu-han (陳瑀涵) famously increased her bust size from a barely noticeable 32C to a "supersize me" 34D after eight months of acupuncture and Chinese medicine. Not. The former Miss Asia contestant was "devastated" after photos of her showering were put on the web, according to Next. The magazine said her "basketball boobs" were filmed bouncing around in the shower when shooting a video to promote the launch of her singing career. Chen said the photos were stolen and uploaded by fiends in the MV director's company. Cynics will point out this is a suspiciously obvious method of getting free publicity.
Finally, an introduction to the human body. Readers of the local rags may have noted that various states of undress are given a rating. These are called "exposure points" (露點) and go from one (breast) to two (breasts). Models get three points for a vertical smile and a maximum of four when they make an ass of themselves.