Meng Guangmei got her start as a model in Taiwan, becoming the first Taiwanese model to appear at Milan Fashion Week. She soon moved on to acting, appearing in the Hollywood production Red Corner with Richard Gere in 1996. In recent years, the model-actress, age 45, has devoted more time to her career in mainland China hosting television shows.
Why is she famous?
In 2010 her whirlwind romance with Chinese property tycoon Ji Zenghe made headlines. Their subsequent marriage took place very soon after Ji had divorced his first wife, Zhang Qiuhua (whom he married in 1995). Ji is said to have proposed to Meng with a diamond ring worth Rmb6 million.
Why is she in the news?
Last week Meng was caught up in a row between Ji and his ex-wife, who is in dispute with the property developer over the size of his fortune when they divorced. Zhang says she feels misled and is now threatening to sue for a new division of marital assets, asking for up to Rmb4 billion ($630 million). In a TV interview Zhang also lashed out at Meng, saying her former husband had spent over Rmb200 million on his new wife in a single year. Zhang claimed that was her money that Ji was spending, given she’d been with him 20 years and helped him to build his business empire. For China’s society columnists, the bitter dispute is a genuine delight and looks like becoming China’s highest profile divorce drama.
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