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Zhao Wei, a Chinese actor, businesswoman, film director, and pop singer was born in 1976. (born 12 March 1976), also known as Vicky Zhao or Vicki Zhao, is a Chinese actress, producer, and pop musician.
Zhao rose to national and regional prominence in China's Chinese-speaking regions overnight for her role as Xiao Yanzi ("Little Swallow"), for which she also received the Golden Eagle Award for Best Actress.
My Fair Princess had a blast in East and Southeast Asian nations, and Zhao is regarded by some as Mainland China's first "national idol" since 1978's economic reform began. Zhao has appeared in many box-office hits, including Shaolin Soccer (2001), Red Cliff (2008–2009), Painted Skin (2007), Dearest (2014), and Lost in Hong Kong (2015).
She has received numerous accolades from the Shanghai International Film Festival, Huabiao Awards, Changchun Film Festival, Hundred Flowers Awards, and Shanghai Film Critics Awards for films including A Time to Love (2004) and Mulan (2009).
She spent two years in acting and gained the Hong Kong Film Critics Society Award and Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actress in 2014. Though mainly focusing on films, she also produced Romance in the Rain (2001), Moment in Peking (2005) and Tiger Mom (2015).
She has a career in music, beginning with her debut album Swallow (1999), and has released 7 albums.
She received the MTV Asia Award for Best Artist from Mainland China in 2006 for her album Double. Zhao ranked 80th on Forbes' list of Celebrities 100 in 2013, 7th in 2015, and 28th in 2017.
So Young's debut in 2013 was both a box office and critical success.
In a week, it tied for female Chinese directors' films directed by female Chinese directors in a week and became one of China's highest-grossing films.
Debut is a film that was nominated for best Director, Hong Kong, and Taiwan, along with the Golden Rooster Award for Best Directorial Debut, Hundred Flowers Award for Best Film from Mainland and Taiwan. Zhao was named as a member of the main jury at the 73rd Venice International Film Festival in 2016. In September 2017, she was selected as a member of the main competition jury for the 30th Tokyo International Film Festival's main competition jury.
Zhao is the second child to Zhao Jiahai (Chinese: Zhào Jihn), an engineer, and Wei Qiyang (Chinese: ); pinyin: Zhào Jian; born 1971; Ziyin: Zhào Jian; Zhào Jian); Zhao started training students at Wuhu Normal School, a local education agency, to become pre-school teachers. In addition, she underwent lessons in piano, dancing, and Chinese ink wash painting.
Zhao Wei married Chinese businessman Huang You Long () in 2008 in Singapore after two well-known relationships. Huang Xing (), the couple's daughter, was born in April 2010.
Zhao is a close friend of Chinese singers Faye Wong and Na Ying.
When Zhao was still in school, the film A Soul Haunted by Painting (1994), starring Gong Li and Derek Yee, was filming in Wuhu. Zhao was cast in the role of a young prostitute in the brothel where Gong's character appeared, her first acting experience. She appeared briefly at the start of the film but there was no dialogue.
Zhao developed a keen interest in acting after this first encounter and went on to become an actor. She resigned as an apprentice pre-school teacher in 1994 after graduating from Wuhu Normal School. She moved from Shanghai to Xie Jin Star Academy, a Chinese director Xi Jin Jin's acting school, where she received structured acting training from 1994 to 1995. She was also chosen by Xie to appear in his film Penitentiary Angel (1996). This was her first big role. Zhao, although she didn't find her own appearance pleasing, considered it a valuable learning opportunity and a good start to her career. The film landed her other roles in television series, including her first leading role in Sisters in Beijing (1996). "I am too young to understand the role," she said, "but if you've been cast in a film directed by a well-known director, other less well-known directors would want to cast you."
Zhao was accepted to the Beijing Film Academy (BFA) School of Performing Arts in 1996 with the highest entrance exam rating in the country. Zhao earned five "A"s and nine "A"s out of the 14 courses four years later as one of the most promising graduates. Her graduation thesis received 90 points (out of 100).
Chiung Yao, a novelist and producer, was filming My Fair Princess, a joint venture between mainland China and Taiwan, which was based on Chiung Yao's own book. Since watching Sisters in Beijing and offering Zhao the title role of Huan Zhu Ge Ge (Princess Pearl) a.k.a. Xiao Yanzi ("Little Swallow"), a rebellious and amusing princess who dared to question authority and rules in the palace, was born "Little Swallow"), a rebellious and amusing princess who dared to defy authority and rules. Zhao and her co-stars were unable to film the series, but Zhao herself admitted the rigor of filming: it was an exhausting challenge.
The cast's hard work culminated in unexpected outcomes. This comedic period drama exploded on television screens in Taiwan, mainland China, Hong Kong, and Southeast Asian countries, including Singapore and Vietnam, quickly becoming a hit television show. Zhao came to fame overnight and became a household name. In 1999, she became the youngest actress to receive the Golden Eagle Award for Best Actress. She is regarded by some as mainland China's first "national idol," and she has been named one of Taiwan's "Top Ten Most Outstanding People in Television" by many. She is also known as one of China's Four Dan Actresses. However, alongside the incredible success, there were also a slew of pessimistic observers in mainland China, who said the rebellious position as a "bad influence" over children. A CPPCC member sent a letter inviting the CPPCC to protest the "little swallow" at the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference in 2002. Zhao teamed up with Chiung Yao on the 2001 television series Romance in the Rain, a costume drama set in the 1930s and 1940s. Zhao portrayed a vengeful teen who attempted to exact revenge against her parents in this series. The year's best ratings were the series's best ever.
Zhao soon felt that she had achieved all she could in television and began to shift her attention away from television to films.
Zhao went on to act in a few Hong Kong films. She appeared in the comedy film Shaolin Soccer with Hong Kong actor and producer Stephen Chow in 2001. Zhao played an ostensibly steamed bun-maker-cum-taichi-master, a striking contrast to the glamorous image she had portrayed for herself in previous roles. Zhao was nominated for Best Actress at the Chinese Film Media Awards. This was followed by a supporting role in Chinese Odyssey 2002 as "Phoenix," for which she was nominated Golden Horse Award for Best Supporting Actress. Zhao was assassinated in So Close, which also stars Shu Qi and Karen Mok, in 2002.
Zhao appeared in four films, including My Dream Girl, Warriors of Heaven and Earth, Green Tea, and Jade Goddess of Mercy. Following much rumors over who was cast in Ann Hui's film Jade Goddess of Mercy, Zhao was given the lead, and critics applauded her performance. The Chinese Association of Film Performing Arts awarded her the Golden Phoenix Award for her role in 2004. For her appearance in Warriors of Heaven and Earth, she was also nominated for the 27th Hundred Flowers Award for Best Actress.
When Shrek 2 was released in China in 2004, Zhao was portrayed as Princess Fiona.
Zhao's 2005 was another fruitful year. She received the Golden Goblet Award for Best Actress at the Shanghai International Film Festival and tied for the Huabiao Award with Zhang Ziyi. Both awards were given for her appearance in A Time to Love. At the 8th Changchun Film Festival in 2006, Zhao once more named Best Actress for the film.
Zhao starred Yao Mulan in a Peking revival after a four-year absence from television drama. Zhao's fourth television drama (after My Fair Princess, My Fair Princess 2 and Romance in the Rain) became the year's highest rated drama. Zhao was nominated for Outstanding Actress at the 26th Flying Apsaras Awards.
Zhao appeared in The Postmodern Life of My Aunt, which premiered at film festivals around the globe, including the Toronto International Film Festival. Even though Zhao appeared in the film for ten minutes, her appearance earned her to be nominated for the 43rd Golden Horse Awards and the 27th Hong Kong Film Awards for Best Supporting Actress.
Zhao made a surprising move in 2006 by taking the national entrance exam for postgraduate studies. Zhao returned to her alma mater, the Beijing Film Academy (BFA), in September 2006 as a postgraduate student in the Department of Film Directing, where she worked under director Tian Zhuangzhuang. Zhao was ranked No. 4 on Forbes' 2006 China Celebrity 100 list, and he was ranked No. 4 in that year. Through a national vote by Sina.com & Sohu.com's members, she was voted China's "Most Beautiful Woman." Zhao was also voted as "100 Most Beautiful People" by a People magazine in 2006.
In the 2007 film The Longest Night in Shanghai, Zhao played a taxi by starring Masahiro Motoki and Dylan Kuo. Zhao appeared in the television series Thank You for Having Loved Me the previous year. According to reports, she was paid 100,000 yuan per episode.
Zhao appeared in John Woo's historical epic Red Cliff from 2008 to 2009. The film, which takes place in the Three Kingdoms period, is mainland China's most expensive production since. Sun Shangxiang, the independent-minded sister of warlord Sun Quan, who disguised herself as a male enemy soldier in order to gather intelligence, was an intelligence service soldier disguised as a male enemy soldier. At the Hong Kong Film Award for Best Supporting Actress, Zhao received two nominations.
She appeared in Gordon Chan's horror-adventure film Painted Skin (2008). The film set a new record in Chinese film by exporting 100 million yuan in less than six days. Zhao's performance as a general's wife was especially well-received, and she was given Best Actress nominations at the 27th Golden Rooster Award and 3rd Asian Film Award for her 27th Golden Rooster Award and 3rd Asian Film Award.
In Jingle Ma's Mulan in 2009, Zhao played the iconic character Hua Mulan. Zhao was described by Ma as the "ideal match" for the cross-dressing heroine. Zhao received the Best Actress Award at the 10th Changchun Film Festival, 30th Hundred Flowers Awards, and 19th Shanghai Film Critics Awards for her role in the film.
She was elected vice president of the China Film Performance Art Academy and executive member of the China Environmental Society on August 6, 2009.
Zhao, who appeared in the wuxia film 14 Blades alongside Donnie Yen, took a two-year break from acting. Huang Xin, she and businessman Huang Xin's only child, was born on April 11, 2010, the only child of her and businessman Huang Youlong, who married in 2008.
She returned to the spotlight in June 2010 as a jury member of the 13th Shanghai International Film Festival.
Zhao returned from her extended parental leave in 2012, appearing in Love, directed by Doze Niu. The film also had commercial success, and it became the first film to gross 100 million yuan in both Taiwan and mainland China. Zhao Wei's solo appearance in critics has been described as "the most stunning scene" in the film. Painted Skin: The Resurrection, the sequel to the 2008 film Painted Skin, was released in the same year. The film earned over 700 million yuan to become the country's highest grossing film before being defeated by Lost in Thailand.
She graduated from Beijing Film Academy's directing institute in 2012 with a MFA dissertation defense score of 99/100, ranked No. 102. Out of all the graduates, 1 out of all the graduates.
So Young, her directorial debut, opened in April 2013 to 141 million yuan in its first weekend. She is China's first female director whose debut film made money when it broke 100 million yuan. So Young's total box office income in China was over 700 million yuan in less than a week. Zhao received the Golden Rooster Award for Best Directorial Debut, Hundred Flowers Award for Best Film from Mainland and Taiwan for the film.
Zhao also served as a judge for China's Got Talent's 5th season, alongside Liu Ye, Alec Su, and Wang Wei Chun.
Zhao returned to acting in 2014 in the film Dearest, directed by Peter Chan, portraying a countrywoman. The film was selected by the Venice International Film Festival in the Out-of-come category, and Zhao's role as a foster mother of a kidnapped child was recognized internationally. Juliette Binoche, the Hollywood Reporter, referred to her as the Chinese Juliette Binoche. Zhao received the Hong Kong Film Award and the Hong Kong Film Critics Society Award for Best Actress in this film.
She appeared in comedies Hollywood Adventures and Lost in Hong Kong in 2015, both of which were highly advised. Zhao was dubbed the "world's richest working actress," according to Forbes. Zhao returned to television in Tiger Mom this year. She was nominated for Best Actress in a Television Series and the Golden Award for Best Actress in a Television Series at the Asian Television Award and Magnolia. Zhao was elected executive member of the China Film Directors' Guild on October 20th.
Zhao appeared in Johnnie To's crime thriller film Three as a doctor in 2016. She also started work on her second directorial project, No Other Love. She appeared in July as a member of the main competition jury for Venice's 73rd Venice International Film Festival.
In February 2017, Zhao returned to her alma mater, School of Performing Arts, Beijing Film Academy, to be the final round examiner/assessor for the 2017 class. The entrance exam is considered the most difficult for students studying performing arts, although the success rate is 1:113. She was named in September as a member of the 30th Tokyo International Film Festival's main competition jury.
Zhao Wei was a member of the final-round jury for the 9th China Film Directors Guild Award in March 2018. She was also appointed as the official spokesperson of the 12th Xining FIRST International Film Festival. Zhao was named as the head director of CCTV's documentary Starlight, which was shown on the China Movie Channel, on October 17th.
Catherine, Zhao, the protagonist of David Auburn's 2001 broadway play Proof, directed by Tian Zhuangzhuang, made her stage debut. The performance opened in Beijing on January 23, 2019 at the Tianqiao Art Center, to critical acclaim.
Zhao had been "erased" from the internet in China by 2021, according to official reasons.
Zhao has been actively involved in company since her days as a performer. The culmination of her Red Earth and Amoisonic Mobile Phone work, she was selected as one of "China's Top Ten Most Popular Commercial Models" in 2001. Zhao was ranked second on "China's Top ten Artists for Advertisements" list this year. Zhao ranked No. 1 in China and Japan, and number two in South Korea, establishing her "Commercial Queen in three countries," according to KBS, a South Korean television network.
Zhao has been lauded by the media on several occasions for her sense of style. Zhao was named as the "Most Stylish Actress" in mainland China at the Lycra Channel Young Awards (now known as the China Fashion Awards). Zhao was also chosen as the "Most Stylish Asian Actress" by MTV China in the same year. Zhao received another fashion award at the 2004 Pierre Cardin Awards. At the China Fashion Award in 2005, Zhao was named "Most Stylish Female Artist" and "Most Stylish Actor" (CFA). Zhao received her third "Most Stylish Actor" at the China Fashion Awards in 2007. At the MTV China Style Gala the same year, she was named "Most Stylish Female Artist" for the same year.
Zhao had risen to the top of the most followed microbloggers worldwide as of 18 April 2011. Her fan base hit six million, bringing her closer to American actress Ellen DeGeneres, Ashton Kutcher, and Katy Perry, both of whom have also passed the six million mark.
Wei and her husband acquired shares in Alibaba Pictures in 2014, triggering billions of dollars in gains over the next two years.
Longwei Culture & Media, a Shenzhen Stock Exchange-listed animation studio and mobile gaming company, purchased Zhejiang People Culture, a Chinese animation studio and mobile gaming business, for 3 billion RMB at the end of 2016. Although the acquiring company has answered the Shanghai Stock Exchange's questions, several mainland China media outlets and some netizens have also banned it, while some netizens remain skeptical about the purchase out by a female actress as "the hen cackles in the morning." In addition, nationalists and ultra-left media often criticize Zhao. Eventually, the original banks resigned due to "uncertainty" in the case, which caused the transaction to fail.
Zhao is a wine enthusiast and has a passion for winemaking. She closed the sale of the Château Monlot, a Saint-Émilion Grand Cru vineyard in France, on December 21. Zhao was accepted into the Jurade de Saint-Émilion on September 16, 2012. In October 2015, Zhao launched the Bordeaux wine brand in the Chinese mass market after four years of work. Both high-end and budget wine selections are available in the online store. Since buying Château Monlot, the 57-hectare Senabet vineyard in Entre-Deux-Mers, has expanded her wine passions in France, with the 12 hectare Château La Croix de la Roche vineyard in AOC Fronsac and Bordeaux on March 29. The Château La Croix de la Roche has a potential annual production of 82,000 bottles and is Zhao's first certified organic farm. It was purchased from Isabelle Maurin, who had owned the château since 1982, but it was sold due to a lack of a family member willing to hand over the property.