In May 2011, China Youth and Children Research Center started a national survey to find out who Chinese kids look up to. A total of 6,466 students from Beijing, Sichuan, Shaanxi, Henan, Liaoning, and Guangdong (Grades 3-11) took part in the survey. Here are the results in ascending order:
10. Yao Ming (姚明)
Who doesn’t know Yao Ming? This retired basketball star played in the NBA for the Houston Rockets from 2002 to 2011; he now studies Economics and Management at Shanghai Jiaotong University.
9. Show Luo (罗志祥)
Born Luo Zhixiang, Show Luo is only one of two Taiwanese celebrities to make the Top 10 list (read on for the second celebrity). He might not be as talented as his compatriot, but he has made himself famous nevertheless through singing, dancing, TV hosting, and acting.
8. Wei Chen (魏晨)
Also known under his English name Vision Wei, Wei Chen has been involved with a comedy TV series produced by Hunan TV. Mostly importantly, he is the first Chinese singer to perform in a Korean musical show: M! Countdown.
7. Lei Feng (雷锋)
Lei Feng was portrayed as a model citizen for his selflessness, modesty, and devotion to Mao. As a cultural icon, he is the only non-celebrity among the Top 10. Lei Feng has been a great idol for different generations in China. Despite the authenticity of this character, his image in our heart has indeed made a great influence on our life principals and moral standards.
6. Yang Mi (杨幂)
This young actress and singer has been involved in different TV series. However, she’s also famous for another reason: her increasingly slimmer face have some Chinese netizens speculating about plastic surgery.
5. Xu Song (许嵩)
Also known as Vae, this talented young independent pop musician is from my home province of Anhui (hooray!). His 2011 album Sugela Meiyou Di (苏格拉没有底) became a bestseller within a month of its release.
4. Liu Xiang (刘翔)
As the first Chinese gold medalist in the 110m hurdles, Liu Xiang’s achievements became a milestone for China. We do hope that his spirit brings China another world’s Champion.
3. Zhang Jie (张杰)
Recently married to TV host Xie Na, Zhang Jie became famous as a pop singer through one of the most popular talent shows on Hunan TV (Kuai Le Nan Sheng).
2. Jackie Chan (成龙)
This world-famous Hong Kong kung fu star has brought us classic movies like Rumble in the Bronx and Rush Hour. However, his personal life (he once claimed that he made a common mistake among men after cheating on his wife) is a big turn off of his glorious image.
1. Jay Chou (周杰伦)
Are you serious? The survey shows without a doubt that this famous Taiwanese R&B singer has absolutely rocked the nation, as well as the world’s Chinese-speaking community, with his grumbling songs and cute one-sided fringe. As a non-fan, it’s been hard enough to avoid his songs when I was a school kid, but his popularity has definitely not decreased through the years.
Photo courtesy of sina.com and ent.ce.cn.