Fan Bingbing Returns to Television as “The Empress of China”

In her first starring television role since The Last Night of Madam Chin <金大班> in 2009, mainland Chinese actress Fan Bingbing (范冰冰) will portray Tang Dynasty empress Wu Zetian (武則天) in the upcoming drama The Empress of China <武則天>.

After successfully making a name for herself in films both domestic and international, Fan Bingbing returns to her television roots in the new year. Following Rouge Snow <胭脂雪> in 2008 and Madam Chin a year later, The Empress of China marks the third television series funded by Bingbing’s own production studio.

The Empress of China will follow Wu Zetian as she begins imperial life as a 14-year-old concubine to Emperor Taizong (Zhang Fengyi 張豐毅). Through the trials of power, love, and politics, Wu Zetian wins over the successor, Emperor Gaozong (Aarif Lee 李治廷), and gains control of the throne before passing away at age 81.

Although many wonder how Fan Bingbing will portray Empress Wu’s wide stretch of years, the actress herself is eager to rise up to the challenge. “An actress who does not want to play Wu Zetian is not a good actress,” she said. “Wu Zetian must be the dream of every actress.”

The Empress of China recently unveiled its first character posters, which depicted the cast dressed regally and posed in front of a floral and natural backdrops. Empress Wang and Consort Xiao, both romantic rivals to Wu Zetian, will be portrayed by mainland Chinese actresses Kira Shi (施詩) and Viann Zhang (張馨予) respectively, while imperial consort and poetess Xu Hui is played by Taiwanese actress Janine Chang (張鈞甯).

Mainland Chinese actor Wu Xiubo (吳秀波) makes an appearance as Zhang Jianzhi, one of the officials who brought about the end of Empress Wu’s reign. Actor Li Chen (李晨) will also have a guest appearance as Wu Zetian’s first love, making The Empress of China his first collaboration with ex-girlfriend Viann Zhang.

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This article is written by Joanna for

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  1. wow i love those poster. i am looking forward to see this serie with Kathy Chow and Aarif Lee

  2. shes soo preeety!!
    i dont find her acting verrry good, but im excited to see her in a drama lol hope its a good one!m

      1. I think Fan Bing Bing is a good actress but hey, acting is subjective…

  3. fan bing bing totally looks like an Ancient Chinese goddess,, she fits the look perfectly!

    1. That’s what I was thinking. She has a nice ancient beauty look but it us more fitting as a consort rather than an empress.

    2. That head gear looks so heavy on her, and it doesn’t give a vibe of the empress :/ you are right, she looks more like a consort than empress, kinda just common looking if you know what I mean :/ not a ‘you must bow to me ‘ look.

      Guess this drama will try to portrait she as a goooood person >_> Anyhoo, isn’t this drama been done many times already :/? It seems she can not be creative -.-

      1. Not as heavy as the monster size Korean head gear that resemble butterfly wings.

      2. Yes,there are already sooooo many series and stories about We Ze Tian recently that it is getting boring. I just recently saw two mainland series on it. I guess it us not only JY novels that are remade,but also these historical stories that Aldo get remade over and over again.

    3. I actually thought the other women, even Viann looks more Empress than Fan Bing Bing who since Huanzhu Ge Ge has always given me the maid/consort feel. And my god, so much make up!

    4. I think Kathy Chow would fit the role of WuZeTian more than Fan Bing Bing does.

  4. i heard aarif lee (the handsome actor) is dating BingBing? if true, its no surprise he is in BIngBing produced TV series here…wonderful glamorous couple indeed..

  5. Fan Bingbing is goddess! Aarif Lee is so handsome! waiting for it >.<

  6. Fan bing bing doesnt have the wuzetian vibe. She looks more like yang gui fei to me based on these stills of her.

  7. Wow very nice, the photos look like paintings! I like Kathy Chow’s look. Viann Zhang’s is very unnatural though.

  8. Except for the overly modern looking makeup with false eyelashes for the actresses, it all looks good.

  9. I really like the poster though. But wasn’t there another news Fan Bing Bing was to play Tang Dynasty’s Yang Guifei? So this is another series with her as Wu Zetian?

    1. Yang guifei is the fox demon… Never actually die, come back to the palace and become wu zetian lol :p see what I did there :p

    2. Fan Bingbing is playing Yang Guifei in an upcoming movie. This is separate.

  10. I thought zhang ting used to be wu zetian… But wasn’t sure. Just checked wiki, she was…. And now she is in this but as not wu zetian >_>! Dk about you, but wouldn’t this feel a bit awkward lol?

    1. Not really because it is just acting. Why should she need to feel awkward?


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