Actor Zhao Yiqin has been gaining attention as the charismatic lead of the short drama Provoke. However, the past it seems, has come back to haunt him. Back in 2019, his ex spilled the beans on him allegedly “sleeping with his male sponsor”. And now, several years later, her claims are being brought up once again, accusing him of “sacrificing himself and sleeping with his male sponsor” just to ensure he can register his hukou (户口) or individual household registration at a certain place.
His ex also accompanied her expose with a 4 hour long recording of her alleged conversation with the actor where he admitted the statement on Weibo was crafted by his manager Yu Zheng who had no idea about his relationship with his male sponsor. Moreover he was also heard spouting out words such as “Check-in records are inconclusive, only photos matter,” and him wanting to “screw over the person who made the expose.” With the renewed attention on the issue, Zhao Yiqin took to social media with a statement and an apology.
But first, what is a hukou? In an (oversimplified) nutshell, where you register your hukou determines your access to certain benefits such as the type education you receive, healthcare and other public and social services. This in turn affects your quality of life and of your family in the future.
Ashamed and Saving Face
In an apology, the 25-year-old actor said he is ashamed that what happened four years ago is being brought up again. He said he tried to “escape” and “modify it,” and that was the recording everyone heard. He wrote, “I said some untruthful things on that call on the mistaken assumption that it would help calm things down. However, after the recording was edited, what was said has been taken out of the context of the conversation and the truth. This made the situation more worrying and it also negatively affected more people. I would like to sincerely apologize to everyone involved in this matter.”
He added, “Why did I make such as mistake? Because of vanity and because of saving face, but also because of fear and avoidance” of what he said was a thorn to his side. “It is actually very difficult and shameful to face this past, but I know that only by pulling out this thorn in my side can I finally close that chapter to my past”. As for people who doubt his explanation, the young actor said he had a life time to prove to everyone what sort of person he is. “I will learn from my mistakes, be more cautious with my words and actions and be more focused on my work” he said.