Chinese celebrity Fan BingBing was named a “one-hour celebrity ambassador” for Louis Vuitton after promotional materials containing her photos mysteriously “disappeared” shortly after they were uploaded, Asia One quoted Sin Chew Daily.
Last Friday, the luxury brand posted photos of Fan BingBing on Weibo, promoting its new line of handbags but the images were removed that same day.
It is rumoured that Fan, 38, may have been dropped as a brand ambassador following a backlash from the online community over her tax evasion scandal.
“We can’t stop her from endorsing an international brand, but I guess she is still censored in China, ” a netizen wrote.
The Chinese actress suffered a string of setbacks after the scandal came to light.
She was fined 880 million yuan (S$171 million), which was described as one of China’s biggest tax evasion penalties ever.
Earlier this year, her engagement with fiance Li Chen was called off.
She was also rumoured to have been dropped from the cast of a Hollywood movie.
The actress is a household name in China and is well known internationally for her role as teleporting mutant Blink in X-Men: Days of Future Past.
With 20 years in China’s entertainment industry, Fan has cultivated a feminist, almost masculine image on her climb to the top of the cinematic food chain.
Her nickname is Lord Fan.
On the spectrum of reputational tropes pitting the likes of Angelina Jolie (independent woman, maneater) against Jennifer Aniston (America’s sweetheart, always needs a man), Fan’s image is closer to the former.
She famously told reporters: “I have never thought of marrying rich, because I am rich myself.”
When previously asked why she was single, she said life could be great without a man.
In advertising campaigns and magazine interviews, Fan has repeatedly borrowed symbols of manhood to project a strong and dominant image.
In a 2009 interview with the Chinese edition of Esquire, she gave an interview titled “I’m a man at heart.”
The magazine cover featured a photo of her holding a razor, half of her jaw covered in shaving cream. -/TISG