A number of main luxurious manufacturers have severed ties with Kris Wu, a Chinese language Canadian singer with an enormous following, after an 18-year-old accused him of concentrating on and pressuring her and different younger ladies for intercourse.
The accusations, which Mr. Wu denied in a number of statements, have triggered widespread public outrage and thrown his profession into tumult. Not less than 11 firms together with Louis Vuitton, Bulgari, Porsche and L’Oréal suspended or terminated contracts with Mr. Wu this week, after his accuser spoke out throughout an interview with a web based Chinese language information outlet on Sunday.
Mr. Wu, 30, rose to fame as a member of the Ok-pop band EXO earlier than embarking on a solo profession as a mannequin, actor and singer, drawing greater than 50 million followers on-line in addition to profitable endorsement offers. Recognized in China as Wu Yifan, he is without doubt one of the nation’s hottest celebrities to face #MeToo accusations.
Mr. Wu’s accuser is Du Meizhu, a college pupil in Beijing who mentioned she first met him when she was 17. She mentioned she had been invited to Mr. Wu’s dwelling by his agent with the suggestion that he might assist her appearing profession, in accordance with her social media posts and the interview with Netease, a web based portal. As soon as there, she was pressured to drink cocktails till she misplaced consciousness, she mentioned, and later discovered herself in his mattress.
Ms. Du mentioned she believed that this was a tactic he used to attract different younger ladies. She accused Mr. Wu of relating to ladies as if they had been all concubines in a harem. “You take a look at loads of photos of ladies at ingesting events and choose them like merchandise,” she wrote in a single social media submit, addressing him straight.
Mr. Wu has denied the accusations, by way of his lawyer, Zhai Jiayu, and public statements. On Monday, Mr. Wu mentioned that he had solely met Ms. Du as soon as in December of final yr.
“I declare that there has by no means been any ‘deciding on a concubine’!” he wrote on the social media platform Weibo, referring to Ms. Du’s harem remark. He denied having ever seduced, drugged or raped anybody. “If there was such conduct, please don’t fear, I’ll go to jail on my own!”
Ms. Du and Mr. Wu didn’t reply to emailed requests to remark.
Ms. Du’s account has been met with an outpouring of assist, an indication of the rising energy of the nation’s small Me Too motion. Considered one of her posts on Weibo has been appreciated by greater than 10 million customers. Hashtags similar to #girlshelpgirls and others calling for Mr. Wu to give up present enterprise have been considered by hundreds of thousands.
Ms. Du’s supporters flooded the social media pages of a number of manufacturers with threats of boycotts if they didn’t terminate their endorsement offers with Mr. Wu. One after the other, the manufacturers moved to distance themselves from him.
“This incident reveals that these days individuals will now not swallow insults and humiliation and be afraid of slut shaming,” mentioned Feng Yuan, a feminist scholar and activist. “Folks more and more need to communicate up and make themselves heard.”
#MeToo activism may be difficult in China, the place the ruling Communist Celebration imposes strict constraints on dissent and public debate. Some ladies who’ve come ahead with accounts of abuse have confronted a public and legal backlash. The authorities usually discourage women from reporting rape and different intercourse crimes.
It was unclear how the authorities had been planning to reply to the allegations towards Mr. Wu, however a minimum of three teams affiliated with the federal government put out statements calling for an investigation.
“Everyone seems to be equal earlier than the regulation, and celebrities with enormous followings are not any exception,” China Girls’s Information, the newspaper of a state-run ladies’s group, wrote on its social media web page. “Imagine that the regulation won’t improper a great individual, nor will it let a depraved one go.”
Ms. Du first began talking out on July eight, when she launched screenshots of conversations between her and Mr. Wu, in addition to individuals she mentioned labored for him. She accused them of engaging younger ladies by dangling alternatives in present enterprise.
In a single screenshot, dated July of final yr, an individual reaching out to Ms. Du on Weibo requested her if she could be all for working within the film business. The individual then added her contact on WeChat, a chat app, and requested if she had simply accomplished her faculty entrance examination, saying that he labored for Mr. Wu’s studio and so they had been on the lookout for new expertise.
Ms. Du mentioned she felt helpless when she realized that Mr. Wu particularly focused younger ladies like her. “Certainly, we’re all softhearted once we see your harmless expression, however that doesn’t imply that we need to grow to be playthings whom you possibly can deceive!” she wrote in a post on Weibo.
She mentioned quickly after that, one other affiliate of Mr. Wu’s contacted her on WeChat to supply what she thought-about hush cash to take down the submit. When she demanded a public apology from Mr. Wu, the affiliate mentioned they had been contemplating authorized motion towards her, in accordance with screenshots of the chat she posted on-line. She mentioned that 500,000 yuan, or almost $80,000, was later transferred to her bank account, although she had not given her consent.
Within the Netease interview on Sunday, Ms. Du mentioned that she had began to return the cash in batches and that she was gearing up for a authorized battle.
In detailing her first encounter with Mr. Wu, Ms. Du mentioned that she had been informed that she could be going to debate potential jobs. She mentioned that she tried to depart, however that his employees took away her telephone and warned that if Mr. Wu didn’t have a great time, it may very well be detrimental to her future as an actor.
Pressured into ingesting closely, she mentioned, she ended up sleeping with Mr. Wu. They dated till March, in accordance with her account of the occasions, when he stopped responding to her calls and messages.
Since then, she mentioned, she had heard from seven different ladies who had been equally handled. She mentioned she needed to battle for his or her pursuits as nicely. She didn’t establish the opposite individuals, and the accusations couldn’t be instantly corroborated.
Since going public, Ms. Du mentioned she has been a goal of cyberbullying and loss of life threats, and that she had been recognized with melancholy. Mr. Wu’s international fan club said in a post on Weibo: “It’s a pity to see a groundless web drama flip into an evil carnival that violates the reality and legal guidelines.”
However a number of different individuals on social media this week posted messages of assist, together with screenshots of chats that they mentioned indicated Mr. Wu or his employees inappropriately focused younger ladies.
“Ladies, please shield your self,” Zhang Dansan, a former member of a lady band, wrote on Weibo on Monday, after sharing screenshots of conversations that she mentioned confirmed how Mr. Wu had requested her if she was a virgin. “I need to be cherished too, however don’t be fooled.”