uperstar actress Fan Bingbing has broken the Chinese internet with a bombshell announcement that she and her fiancé Li Chen have broken up.
At 8:24 pm on Thursday evening, Fan wrote on her Weibo account:
We experience many kinds of farewells during our lives. The warmth and love that we gain from each encounter turns into strength that lasts forever. Thank you for the sacrifices, support, and love you’ve given me and I’m thankful for the concern and love that you’ll give me in the future.
We are no longer us, but we are still us.
In just two hours, that post has tallied more than 660,000 likes, 180,000 comments, and 90,000 shares. Netizens have since reported numerous outages on the social media network with the news apparently being too much to handle for Weibo’s servers.
Li immediately shared the post on his own Weibo account, adding the words:
From friends to lovers and then back again to friends. The emotions may change, but the pure feelings between you and me will never change. The trust and support we have for each other will last forever. We are no longer us, we are still us.
Not quite forever
The two actors went public with their relationship in 2015 after first meeting on the set of the ultra-popular Chinese costume drama The Empress of China. Two years later, Li got down on one knee and proposed to Fan at her lavish 36th birthday party.
Afterward, Li posted on Weibo “It’s us, forever,” and Fan responded, “Forever and ever.”
At the time, Fan’s mom was reported to have told Li, “No matter what, you two will always have each other.”
Of course, 2017 must seem like decades ago for Fan and Li. In the interim, Fan Bingbing has gone from being China’s most famous and well-paid actress to the country’s most well-known tax cheat.
During the summer and autumn of last year, Fan went mysteriously “missing” for months. In October, she finally broke her silence with an apology after authorities in Jiangsu province announced that the actress was guilty of tax fraud, stating that she could avoid prison by paying 883 million yuan ($129 million) in back taxes and fees.
Fan has only recently attempted to forge her way back into the public eye, going on a trip to Tibet for a charity event in May and falling victim to altitude sickness.