Xiao Zhan’s Income Has Not Caught Up to His Popularity

As one of China’s most popular stars, Xiao Zhan (肖战) has a massive fanbase and many commercially successful projects. Xiao Zhan has consistently topped male celebrity popularity rankings and beat out hot favorites such as Wang Yibo (王一博) and TFBoys‘ Jackson Yee (易烊千玺). Despite Xian Zhan’s star power, the 29-year-old actor’s income is shockingly much lower than other top stars.

Currently, Xiao Zhan is appearing in stage play A Dream Like A Dream <如夢之夢> in Wuhan. Since the stage play is in high demand, more than 130,000 fans per second rushed online to buy a ticket and scalpers raised the price from 1,880 Chinese yuan to 30,000 Chinese yuan. Many fans are eager to watch him perform live, and the venue was also flooded with over 100 bouquets of flowers for the star.

Considering Xiao Zhan’s popularity, many fans are surprised that the star’s income is on the lower end.  The majority of his income goes to his management company. For example, of the CNY 5 million fee for starring in 2019’s drama The Untamed <陳情令>, Xiao Zhan received only CNY 1 million for his role, while his management company received CNY 4 million.

The same discrepancy is said for the income from Xiao Zhan’s product endorsements. While brands pay hefty fees to collaborate with Xiao Zhan, his agency takes a big cut in his earnings.  The star received a mere CNY 3.4 million yuan for his eight days of work and a one-year collaboration with a well-known skin care brand. In comparison, Angelababy and Yang Mi (楊冪) would earn ten of millions more for similar work.

Many fans argue that Xiao Zhan’s income is lower than second-tier celebrities, and believe this is the reason why he is always busy working to compensate for the steep commissions. After his stage play performance, Xiao Zhan will be hosting a concert in October while taking on more endorsement projects, including being a spokesperson for a national car brand.

Source: On.cc

This article is written by Sammi for JayneStars.com.

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  1. He has a ****** management company that did not support him for years…he had to crave out his own success…All well documented online. I really hope he his contract will come to a end soon.

  2. Xiao Zhan is such a nice guy and so talented. That’s horrible that it’s happening to him!!! I wouldn’t call that commission – I would call that robberies/blood sucking people. What kind of a monster agency? Does it have anything to do with Long Dani? They will get their karma one day.

    1. @dramas4me

      Xiao Zhan signed the contract with this eyes open. He knew the terms when he signed it. The company is only getting back their investment.

      1. @kidd how much did they invest, percentage? You know? Unfortunately no one around him or knew him could give him truthful, helpful advice advice, hate to see this type of crooked, unfair, dishonest treatment happening to him. Hope at end of contract by that time he’s found a better, keen, agency with his interest in mind for his profitable, bright future.

      2. @vbabe8

        “how much did they invest, percentage? You know? “

        I don’t know, and neither do you. Unless you have been directly in contact with him, you also don’t know his real situation, who gave him what advice etc.

        “Unfortunately no one around him or knew him could give him truthful, helpful advice advice”

        Sorry. I don’t think that he just came back up by his own effort with only his fans support. I know his fans love him and did whatever they can to help and support him. But, if other people in the industry didn’t give him help and chances, he won’t so easily came back up in so short a time.

      3. @kidd besides his unwavering fans, he was praised and supported by government media platforms who invited him to appear on their programs several times. Their endorsement and the gradual exposure of the dirty conspiracy against XZ by capital interests gradually lead to his big comeback in c-ent. The official government platform CCTV replayed XZ’s drama Duolo Continent on 2/27as a slap in the face of the 227 alliance.

      4. @vbabe8 lol, his management company is in it for business, not charity. If you look at pharmaceutical companies, they would always try to gain 4-10times the amount they invested in. With celebrities, they have about 10yrs of being profitable, after that, not so much for 80-90% of them. So they need a good profit margin. It’s not a straight I put in this much, I should get out this much. No business follows that model lol.

      5. @kidd

        Watch this YouTube video and you will understand his situation better. I read some stuff that his company is not taking care of him. I understand if there is a contract then they can take their commission, but they also need to honor their end of the deal also. They have to help him and promote him. I read that Long Dani is not nice to Xiao Zhan. He already opened his own studio last year from what I read.


  3. not news, happens more often then people realize. the contract terms are going to hold until the terms end which might be years if not decades later.

  4. Thought he already settled with his company and agreed on a fairer agreement? Still no?

    1. @hayden I heard he tried to end that contract, but he wasn’t able to do that. I think that nasty contract won’t end for a few more years.

      1. @dramas4me then XZ will need to work extra hard to have more income :(, but I think he will still earn high amount but will be sky high if his company did not exploit him that much. Wonder if Yibo management company also the same exploit or is much better?

  5. XZ is such a nice, talented and polite guy. His management company is definitely taking advantage of his fame and popularity. He should end his contract as soon as he can and look for a better company who knows how to take care of its artists or start his own management studio.

  6. Not so sure about the arrangement but isn’t usually agency spent for majority of the talent’s working expenses from security, assistant, promotional etc etc which is not cheap??? So the 1M from 5M is totally net?? I know it’s still sounds unfair.

    Usually this kind of contract was made before the talent got popular. The agency gambled by “investing” in certain unknown talent and the talent accepted the terms because got no choice since it does cost lots of money to become a celebrity. In fairness, it’s a win win situation. But usually when the gamble paid off, the talent become unsatisfied and the agency become greedy and unwilling to let go.

    1. @niangniang

      I have the same thought. The agency took a gamble and invested in him when he was an unknown. Of course they want to get the returns when he become popular.

      Xiao Zhan signed the contract with his eyes open. He was an adult when he signed the contract, not a 12 year old who was sold off by his parents (this actually happened to Isabella Leong). There’s no cheating involved. So, Xiao Zhan have to either wait for the contract to end or pay the contract termination fee.

      1. @kidd
        His fans should know better to not overplayed their hands after what happened last year. Does they know how much settlement XZ had to pay for all of those cancelled endorsements? Maybe that is the main cause of why XZ has to works so hard for money to pay off all of those debts.

        Fandom should just shut up about the things that they have no knowledge of and let XZ takes care of his own business. He is a 30 yo full grown man, for God’s sake. He has his parent, friends and fully capable of hiring a legal team to take care of any legal matters.

  7. “The star received a mere CNY 3.4 million yuan for his eight days of work and a one-year collaboration with a well-known skin care brand. In comparison, Angelababy and Yang Mi (楊冪) would earn ten of millions more for similar work.”

    The writer shouldn’t compare Xiao Zhan to Angelababy and Yang Mi. He/she should compare him to Wang Yibo. Their situation is more similar. Both become hugely popular after ‘Untamed’ and both under a big management company since they were unknown. I wonder how many percentages Yuehua cut from Wang Yibo’s earnings.

    Angelababy and Yang Mi came out and became established earlier. They are also not managed by big company. Different situation from Xiao Zhan.

    1. @kidd yup, XZ is new, who know how long he would last (sure it looks like he will last a long while but still the future is uncertain). While AB and YM has been solid for the last 10yrs, and it doesn’t seem like anything they do will change it (unless they will be blacklisted by the government like FBB). You can’t expect his salary is the same as them.

  8. Xiao Zhan’s X-NINE bandmate Wu Jiacheng confirmed that they had no income during most of 2018. Both have admitted that it was a low point in their career. Wajijiwa (their agency) did not schedule any work for them and they had no income. They were lucky if they received 3,000 RMB as a living stipend for the month. This did not even cover rent in Beijing.

    Xiao Zhan auditioned for The Untamed on his own with no help from Wajijiwa. Douluo Continent, Joy of Life and Jade Dynasty are with the same production company as The Untamed (Tencent is large stakeholder in that company). So other than CCTV, the production company has been a major benefactor in Xiao Zhan’s career.

    He had filed a lawsuit to end the contract with Wajijiwa just before the Untamed aired. I assume that Wajijiwa decided to allow Xiao Zhan to open his own studio in exchange for royalties on all his income until the end of his contract (which should be 2016 at the latest assuming it’s a 10 year contract) because of his sudden popularity from the Untamed.

    1. @cha1

      I think if it’s not because of this contract – the sky would be a limit for him. He has the talent, the look and a great personality. He is a hard worker. A 10 years contract is a long time for an artist’s youth – especially a bad one. Hopefully there will be a way for him to get out of this contract sooner than that.

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