Shu Qi (舒淇 ) is a very successful figure in the entertainment industry and has won many awards. Even though her life may seem glamorous, the 44-year-old actress feels that everyone has a dark side. Appearing as a guest in Chinese documentary My Legacy <時代我>, Shu Qi spoke about her troubled childhood and admitted that she was a rebellious teenager.
Since her parents often beat her, Shu Qi learned to be observant of their moods to avoid being yelled at or beaten from a young age. Whenever she heard the sound of her father’s motorcycle returning home, she would run as far away as she could to hide even if it was in the middle of the night.
During her teenager years, Shu Qi described herself like a ship that floated aimlessly from port to port. She decided to run away from home at the age of 15 or 16. Since she did not have enough money for rent, she borrowed $5000 Taiwan dollars from her mother. When Shu Qi got into a car accident, her mother only continued to yell at her instead of showing concern. Her scars from the car accident are still visible on her feet, shins, and shoulders until this day.
It is common knowledge that Shu Qi had started her career by taking many risqué photoshoots, which attracted Wong Jing’s (王晶) attention and prompted the director to cast her in his movies. In Shu Qi’s first year of filming in Hong Kong, she and other Taiwanese girls were invited to Wong Jing’s home to eat New Year’s Eve dinner. The director gave out red pockets and they played mahjong together. However, when Shu Qi went to the washroom, she heard a girl crying.
In that moment, Shu Qi had an epiphany and realized that she could not continue to wander through life aimlessly. Giving herself a limit of five years to achieve her career goals, Shu Qi decided if she was unsuccessful, she would return to Taiwan and get married. Shu Qi said, “I set Veronica Yip (葉玉卿) as my idol, and I wanted to be like her.” Veronica is known for being a Category III film star who reinvented herself and starred in mainstream movies and released music albums.
Starting her film career in Hong Kong when she was only 17, Shu Qi had to deal with many situations on her own. She learned how to protect herself while filming in Hong Kong, “If you pretend to be vulnerable, then people will feel that you are such and you’ll be bullied easily.” However, by standing up for herself, she accidentally had offended some people and earned the nickname of a diva.
Despite a questionable start in the entertainment industry, Shu Qi impressed critics with her film performances and won Best Supporting Actress for Portland Street Blues <古惑仔情義篇之洪興十三妹> and Best Actress for Three Times <最好的時光> at the Golden Horse Awards.
However, behind her success, her mental health was crumbling. She fell into depression, turned to alcohol and relied on sleeping pills due to insomnia. Eventually overcoming this difficult time, Shu found love with long-time friend Stephen Fung (馮德倫). After 20 years of friendship and four years of on-and-off dating, the couple got married. Though Shu Qi’s career has slowed down in recent years, she has become happier after a long journey of self-discovery.
This article is written by Kiki for JayneStars.com.