ackie Chan has evidently been so busy promoting his new album that he hasn’t had any time to notice the mass protests rocking his home city.
On Wednesday, the movie star was in Taipei at a media event hyping up his latest album “I Am Jackie Chan,” his first album in 16 years. The event happened to coincide with tens of thousands of protesters surrounding the Legislative Council building in Hong Kong, angry over a controversial bill that would allow criminal suspects to be taken to mainland China for trial.
When asked to give his thoughts on the situation, Chan pleaded ignorance. “I only found out yesterday there was a big march in Hong Kong. I don’t know anything about it,” he said.
Chan has long been criticized in Hong Kong for his pro-Beijing views. The actor has never been shy to sing out China’s praises, literally doing so at two straight CCTV Spring Festival Galas. Last month, he was one of 200 of the city’s elite who joined in to sing the Chinese national anthem in a “flash mob” propaganda video.
Back in 2014, Chan did offer his opinions on the Umbrella Movement, worrying that the protests were hurting Hong Kong’s economic future, writing on Weibo that:
“I found out through the news that Hong Kong’s economic losses reached HK$350 billion [$51.9 billion] and I’m really worried . . . I believe every Hong Kong resident loves Hong Kong and wishes it well! Hong Kong’s bright tomorrow requires everyone’s support and hard work . . . In the song ‘Country,’ one line goes: ‘There is no prosperous home without a strong country.’ I am willing to work hard with everyone and return to rationality, to face the future, love our country, love our Hong Kong.”