Rumored to be dating his manager Zhang Jing (張晶), Chinese actor Xiao Zhan (肖戰) is facing fan protest, as they mass unfollow him to voice their displeasure.
Rumors with Co-star Li Qin
Frequently working with actress Li Qin (李沁), the two have paired onscreen five times previously, and she is also the female lead in his latest yet-to-air drama Where Dreams Begin <夢中的那片海>. The duo have twice been rumored to be dating, once after filming wrapped for 2017’s The Wolf <狼殿下>, and another time when they were spotted skiiing together. In June last year, Li Qin showed up at Xiao Zhan’s stage play, and even disguised herself as a production crew and dined with him, leading to swirling dating rumors between the two.
However, Xiao Zhan has thrice denied the gossip, most recently emphasizing his singlehood status on microblogging platform Weibo. Sharp-eyed fans turned their attention when they spotted that his artiste manager, Zhang Jing has been rather high-profile in donning matching outfits with the actor.
Matching Outfits Irk Fans
Fans pointed out how Zhang Jing has been spotted blatantly dressed in matching outfits with their idol, be it casual daily wear or special outfits worn by the star when accepting awards or attending significant events, and even items like travel pillows. Annoyed at her lack of professionalism as an artiste manager, they are also angered by her complete disregard of their feelings, describing his dating rumors with Li Qin as just “smoke and mirrors”.
Fueling their discontentment further was Zhang Jing’s “confessions-style” writing on her social profile. “Every interview is another chance to know Xiao Zhan once again. Someone who’s focused and silent most of the time, yet is able to hold everyone’s attention when he speaks,” she wrote. Fans found her language unbecoming of an artiste manager. Having voiced their discontent previously to no avail, fans of her star decided to step up their protest by enacting a mass unfollowing move from the 30-year-old’s social media.
Despite her problematic behaviors, netizens acknowledged that she has done a good job picking out drama offers for Xiao Zhan, and also propelling actress Jing Tian (景甜) to popularity. Some also felt that that the rumors might merely be a misunderstanding as it is common for artistes to receive many sponsored items, and did not think she would be the actor’s choice dating partner.