Dear Gossips,

All charges against Jussie Smollett were dropped yesterday because 2019 continues to be a total mindf-ck. Speaking of mindf-cks though, I’m about to link you to another one if you haven’t yet read it. 

Vanity Fair’s piece published yesterday on the Disappearance of Fan Bingbing - have you read it yet? Fan Bingbing is the world’s biggest movie star, because “world’s biggest” extends beyond North America, especially when you consider reach and audience numbers and money. So much money. Bingbing went missing last year for three months after she was busted for a tax scam. She reemerged last fall after agreeing to pay fines and apologise, profusely, to the Chinese government and the Chinese people and, basically, to Chinese national identity for her mistakes. This is the backstory of what happened and where she went, and how the entire film industry was affected but it’s also a broader examination, through Bingbing’s status, of the Chinese celebrity ecosystem, how the culture is both at odds with the star system and hungrily looking for new stars to follow. After all, here in the Western world, we are amateurs compared to China when it comes to selfies and social media. Jennifer Lawrence would be barely noticed in China if some of their most popular social media stars were in the same space. They’re doing sh-t that won’t occur to the Kardashians for at least another six months. 

That said, some of the details in this article are straight up terrifying, especially where scam-busting is concerned. Put it this way – if the college admissions scandal had happened in China, Felicity Huffman and Lori Loughlin wouldn’t have been given the luxury of turning themselves in and waiting comfortably at home until the trial. Unless, of course, Wendi Deng intervened. Could Wendi Deng have possibly helped Fan Bingbing?! Anyway, whatever, no one is sophisticated enough to keep up with the international diplomatic manoeuvers of WDM. So, with that in mind, just in case this gets through the censors, I would like to say that the nation of China is very great and super wonderful. 

Click here to read the Vanity Fair piece on Fan Bingbing.

Yours in gossip,