Hmm, I’m thinking I might make a “Mandopop and the Olympics” tag, because these sorts of stories are bound to pop up with greater frequency over the next few months, and are invariably interesting to me. Making a new category tag is not really all that big of a commitment, so I guess I will. (Okay, done! Now to go back and tag old posts…)
Leehom has been selected to be a torchbearer on the early days of the Olympic torch relay beginning this week in Greece, the ancient home of the Olympic games. His selection apparently has to do with his environmental activism, which ties in with Olympic themes, and his popularity. Now look at the pictures closely (more here):
I see “Coca-Cola” logos in the background in Chinese. I wonder if his selection is also linked to his status as a spokesman for that product? Nah, that’s probably too cynical. In all seriousness, I think the honor is well deserved. As much crap as I give the man about his hair and his KTV-style cheesy ballads – and really, someone has to – he’s a great talent and in the last few years it seems like his star is on the rise. (Contrast his fortunes with that of his erstwhile Lust, Caution castmate, Tang Wei, whose fame has turned to notoriety after being blacklisted in China for her sex scenes and her character’s changing loyalties. Nobody ever said that life was fair, eh? Tony Leung, Ang Lee and Leehom have all been very vocal in their support of her, but that’s not really going to change much in her situation for the time being.)
In Olympic song news, both Jay and Leehom have submitted tracks to the committee for consideration. The list supposedly comes out on April 30. Cowboy Jay ran a much-publicized contest for lyrics to his song, accepting thousands of suggestions but always saying that if he did not find anything suitable he would has his regular partner Vincent Fang to write them. Well, it seems it came down to The Public, 0 and Vincent 1, as he submitted his song with professional lyrics. Leehom very wisely did not write his own lyrics either, seeking old friend and professional lyricist Albert Leung’s (林夕) assistance.
And that concludes today’s installment of “Mandopop and the Olympics.” Stay tuned for our next update.