Fan Bingbing is opening up about her $70 million tax evasion scandal.
“It may be a trough I encountered in my life or in my work, but this trough is actually a good thing,” she told the newspaper. “It has made me calm down and think seriously about what I want to do in my future life.”
The actress added, “No one can have smooth sailing throughout the journey.”
The X-Men star made headlines almost a year ago, in September, after she dropped off the radar both in public and on social media. Her disappearance worried fans, who soon began speculating as to her whereabouts.
In October, Fan was fined $70 million for tax evasion by Chinese authorities.
“There are regrets, pain and fragility,” she told the Times. “But I still feel that I need to keep on living.”
In April, the actress made her first public appearance in almost a year at the IQIYI Ninth Anniversary Gala in Beijing.
Her red carpet appearance came after she broke a nearly year-long social media silence in February, sharing several selfies on Instagram and Facebook that wished her followers a happy and healthy Chinese New Year.
She has since become more active on her social media channels, including in June when she told her followers that she had split from her fiancé, actor Li Chen.
In October, Fan made a statement about her situation on social media. “Recently I have been enduring an unprecedented amount of pain, undergoing deep self-reflection and introspection. I am deeply ashamed and feel guilty for what I have done, and I offer my sincere apologies to everyone,” she wrote according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The actress continued, “I have come to realize that, as a public figure, I should have observed the law, setting a good example for society and the entertainment industry. I shouldn’t have lost the ability to control myself in the face of economic interests, allowing myself to break the law.”
Fan noted that she committed tax evasion “by taking advantage of ‘yin yang contracts’” (meaning she had one contract with her real salary, and another that had a lesser amount, which she then submitted to tax authorities) and that she accepted the fines.
She added, “As an actor, I take pride in showcasing our country’s culture on the global stage, and I do my best to be in the forefront of this. I owe my success to the support of my country and the people. Without the great policies of the [Communist] Party and the state, without the love of the people, there would have been no Fan Bingbing.”