While it’s not uncommon to hear a Cinderella story in the entertainment industry, there are also many women who would rather depend on themselves. This is true in China where we can see that several actresses have made it big on their own merit. Here are some of the Mainland’s most financially independent ladies in showbiz.
Yang Mi has been acting since she was a child. She rose to fame after starring in the wuxia series The Return of the Condor Heroes back in 2006. She became even more popular after playing a lead role in Chinese Paladin 3 in 2009. By 2017 and after starring in Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms, Yang Mi was already a superstar who was earning 80 million yuan. Aside from acting, Yang Mi also chose to set up her own talent agency whose roster includes Dilraba Dilmurat, Bambi Zhu Xudan and Vin Zhang Binbin. The company’s estimated value is about 4.5 billion yuan. With Yang Mi’s divorce from husband Hawick Lau last year, netizens were more concerned for Hawick as Yang Mi seemed to have more money than him.
Liu Tao has been praised by mainland netizens as the “nation’s daughter-in-law” for her upstanding reputation. Liu Tao has been in several highly-acclaimed dramas like Nirvana In Fire, Demi Gods and Semi Devils and Ode to Joy. She ranked 6th in the Forbes Chinese Celebrity List with her pay going as high as 32 million yuan. Netizens have talked about how Liu Tao’s husband Wang Ke failed in his business venture, chalking up a 300 million yuan debt and suffering from depression afterwards. It was Liu Tao who stayed with her husband through thick and thin and helped him clear his debt.
Fan Bingbing was once China’s highest paid star, even appearing in a number of Hollywood films. Fan Bingbing once said that she didn’t have to marry someone rich because she was already rich. She was also chosen as Time magazine’s most influential person in 2017. She has since laid low following her tax evasion case last year in which she paid 880 million yuan to the Chinese government, but has been gradually returning to the limelight in anticipation for her big comeback movie 355.
Zhang Ziyi is another Chinese actress who made it not just domestically but internationally. She gained worldwide fame through the movie Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. She was also one of the first generation of Four Dan Actresses when the term was coined. She has appeared in major productions like Hero, House of Flying Daggers and The Grandmaster. She has since focused on raising her 3-year old daughter with singer husband Wang Feng. She also stars in her first drama Monarch Industry that completed filming last year.