updated 16 Jan 2012, 00:11
user id password
Tue, Jan 10, 2012
The New Paper
Email Print Decrease text size Increase text size
Infamy at any cost
by Maureen Koh

FAME or shame? This Chinese woman has been making the headlines after her mother made a video of her coming out naked from the shower.

This publicity stunt turned small-time actress Gan Lulu, 26, into an instant celebrity on the Internet.

She went on to earn herself a spot in most Top 10 lists compiled by various media platforms in China to mark the hottest news in 2011.

Add to that the many magazine covers she has graced and her slightly meatier roles in China-made films and TV dramas.

Her earnings have reportedly increased with more advertising jobs and event appearances.

Just last month, she caused a frenzy when she made an appearance at the Nanning-Asean International Auto Show in Nanning City.

To think that all it took for her to make the jump to fame was just that one clip that went viral.

Her mum, Madam Lei Bingxia, has also become a celebrity of sorts since she posted the clip last Valentine's Day.

Ten months on, a row has erupted again about the controversial pair in a Chinese TV show on Dec 20.

Henan TV Station had tracked down Mr Gan Dexuan, the model's father. During the talkshow, Shi Hou Zhu Ge Liang, he could barely control his rage as he watched the videoclips of his wife and daughter.

He pointed at his wife, who was in the studio with Gan, and said: "You are too much. You have to account to me. You have to account to our child."

He then told his daughter: "You better explain yourself and your actions to me."

He was disgusted over his wife and daughter's seeming lack of shame as they sought attention with their risque acts despite online criticism.

Such acts include a photo shoot where Madam Lei reached from behind her naked daughter to cover the young woman's nipples.

There's now also a self-shot videoclip that shows the mum topless and cam-whoring. In another video, mother and daughter are frolicking - yes! naked again! - in bed.

Madam Lei, who has since become Gan's manager, told the Chinese media that it was not a big deal.

"Why must people use 'you se yan jing' (tinted glasses) to view us? What's wrong with a mother who wants the best for her child?" she said.

Madam Lei insisted she was merely a desperate mother in search of a boyfriend for her daughter.

No, she declared, it was not a publicity stunt or a money-making opportunity.

But when The New Paper on Sunday requested for an interview earlier with Gan last month, she wanted to be paid a fee.

She explained: "My schedule is very packed. To do an interview (with this newspaper) will mean I have to turn down a job.

"In any case, I don't think we should keep harping on the controversial video. My life now is like that of any celebrity, happy and normal."

It's not surprising that the Internet has become a useful tool for those seeking fame, said veteran analysts from China.

Whether it's sex or scandal, the experts agreed that these tactics are effective marketing tools.

After his rant on the talkshow, Mr Gan stormed out of the studio but was later led back inside for a confrontation with his wife and daughter.

Madam Lei was unfazed. She told her husband: "I feel that I'm very normal. I don't think I'm abnormal or that I am crazy."

Gan's defence raised even more eyebrows.

"It wasn't my intention for people to pay so much attention to this matter," she says.

For added drama, Gan then burst into tears and yelled: "This whole issue is caused by me and me alone. It has nothing to do with my mother."

She gestured angrily at her father and assailed him: "If you continue to slander my mother, I tell you, if I commit suicide, it's all your doing."

Right until the end of the show, Mr Gan remained in his seat, staring stoically at his wife and daughter.

Finally, he apologised profusely to the audience for their actions.

He said: "Things have reached this stage. As a husband, as a father, I have to be responsible for my family members.

"Why they had to do this, I won't understand and can't accept. But there's really nothing that I can do."

Gan revealed later that she and her mother had kept her father in the dark because of his strict and conservative nature.

In a separate interview, Mr Gan told the Chinese media that he lives and works in their hometown of Xinyang in Henan.

He said: "My wife only told me that she wanted to accompany our daughter to Beijing to work, and hopefully find her a husband.

"I didn't know that she'd film such a video just to find prospective suitors.

"I'm in my 50s and we don't even own a computer at home."

Well, if Madam Lei's plan to find Mr Right for her daughter has stalled, that's only because they have been too busy.

Gan said: "But it's okay. I think marriage can wait now that my career is picking up."

This article was first published in The New Paper.

readers' comments
Gee... this report is a beri old news from China oredi.... now then report here? very outdated lah.... :p :D
Posted by Small Fly on Tue, 10 Jan 2012 at 18:17 PM
TNP must be a clown to think that these PRC women will do an interview with you for free. And now the father's involved??!!
Posted by mystrawberry on Tue, 10 Jan 2012 at 13:23 PM

Copyright © 2012 Singapore Press Holdings Ltd. Co. Regn. No. 198402868E. All rights reserved.