Already one of leading celebrity of his generation, in May 2014 Kris Wu embarked on his acting career. His first film became a huge success at the box office and earned him the award for Best New Actor at the Third China International Film Festival held in London; his performance also earned him popular acclaim among film goers. He has subsequently starred in two further movies, with Guan Hu’s Mr. Six already proving massive popular, and Stephen Chow’s Mermaid due to be released during Chinese New Year 2016.
Kris takes all of this in his strides, but his modesty hides the achievement of becoming one of the fastest rising young stars already enjoying box office success and taking staring roles in several high profile films. What’s more, his attendance in international film festivals and fashion weeks has all fed into his social media following with over 10 million fans. He has also recently become the ambassador for the ultra cool headphone brand Beats.
Whilst it is golden age of Chinese cultural and creative industries, it is his undeniable talent and work ethic that has enabled him to achieve this success. Mint Edition were thrilled to have the chance to interview Kris about what drives him, as well as his thoughts on the UK, fashion, life and love.
“I want to play a villain”
Kris Wu treats his labels such as “fresh meat”, and A God” calmly, he doesn’t let himself get carried away; instead he concentrates on getting what he can from each experience, saying “All of these things help me to grow as person”. This humble attitude, with a firm drive to learn and progress, is very rare among young idols and it is part of the reason that his fans love him.
Each new movie brings Kris a new challenge and an opportunity to develop his talent. For his first film, Somewhere Only We Know the whole film crew relocated to Prague for filming. Not only did he learn a great deal from director and his co-stars, he also took the time to absorb all he could from the city and local culture. “The first movie to me is a kind of learning process, I was eager to fully express the tension and emotion of the role”.
His effort clearly weren’t wasted as he won his first award as an actor, and whilst many might see this as additional pressure for his next role, Kris merely took it in his strides as further motivation. “I particularly want people to start associating me more with being an actor. I am truly grateful to the director Xu, she gave me so much guidance and help, I still have a lot of shortcomings, and the award was a great encouragement, I will keep working hard and striving to do better.” From his reply, we found that just to become and idol is not enough, his real desire is to become a serious actor.
When I asked Kris about the type of roles he would like to take on in the future, he is clearly man with a plan, saying that he will continue to pursue roles based on their script and well thought out characters; he is especially keen to take on the role of a villain.
“My experience abroad is my growth”
Kris Wu loves Stephen Chow’s comedies, in his own words, “they are beautiful childhood memories.” When he was a kid, watching a Stephen Chow movie would help to dispel his “loneliness.” Raised in single-parent family in Guangzhou, he immigrated to Canada with his mother when he was 11. Because of work, his mother would leave Kris at her friend’s house and at that time because his English was not very good; he didn’t have any friend and would play alone. Leaving such young son thousands miles away, his mother was also very worried, and she made an overseas phone call every day to speak to him. After two years, his mother couldn’t bear to be apart any longer, and she brought Kris back to Guangzhou with her.
Of those 2 years in Canada, “loneliness” was his deepest feeling, and this really forces him to grow up and become independent. During his most difficult times, Kris always gave himself encouragement; “don’t be afraid when you face difficulties, you need to face them and conquer them, you are stronger than you know.” With this faith, he gradually adapted to the life in Canada, and his mind became clearer, as did his ambitions.
As he recalls this experience overseas, Kris says. “This time to me was invaluable although it was hard, I fortunately made a lot of good friends, and experience means growth,” he wants to deliver his encouragement and faith to his fans, but also to encourage those overseas students. “Studying abroad is a journey toward your goals and you need to work hard in order to achieve.”
“I want to create my own brand”
Fashion and playing basketball are Kris’ main interest apart from acting and singing, he tells us, if he couldn’t be a singer or actor, then he wanted to become a professional basketball player. Kris was recently a VIP guest of Paris Men’s Fashion week, and he enjoys researching and studying fashion history and background; one of his great pleasure in his leisure time is to shop and plan his own styling.
American rapper and fashion designer Pharrell Williams is Kris’ fashion muse. “Pharrell is not just cool and humorous singer, his unique style is well recognized by young people, his street style mixes and matches elements like silk scarves”. Under his influence, Kris is also likes to create a street rock style.
He tells us that the majority of his wardrobe is accessories, shoes and hats rather than suits. During leisure time, Kris dresses freely, because in his view, the best fashion streets is “to maintain a good attitude and good mood, your temperament is your visible fashion assistant.”
It’s not appropriate to pigeonhole Kris into being an actor or singer, he has wider career path laid out, the next step of his plan is to move in to fashion world, “I have plan to establish my own brand.” Of course, in his own brand, he intends to combine basketball and fashion together, by designing a series of crossover rangers, “these are already many brands tried to do this, and made great developments.” He says with confidence. So, who can predict that he would not be the next Eastern Pharrell?
Mint and Kris Wu Q&A
Mint Edition: What’s your impression of the UK?
Kris Wu: I love the “British fashion style”, in many ways it sums up the country, a perfect fusion of ancient and modern elements.
ME: What would you do if you only had one day to spend in London
KW: I’d explore fashion boutiques and small fashion stores, because I like to get sense of what is happening locally and feels the creative energy.
ME: Who’s your favorite British musician?
KW: Easy, The Beatles! The Beatles! The Beatles!
ME: What’s your favorite British designer or brand?
KW: the big 2 for me have to be Burberry and Alexander McQueen.
ME: How do you balance your role as singer and actor? Which of them do you precedence to?
KW: My acting roles depend upon scripts I am presented with. Because I love music I think about this every day. Most of my time this year will be around filming commitments, next year I will focus more on music
ME: What’s your music plan for an album or concert?
KW: I’m preparing a new album now; it is my first solo album so I am paying a lot of attention to it. Watch this space!!
ME: Recently you participated in the reality show “Challenger Union” which challenged you to do different types of jobs, which job was the most challenging?
KW: In fact, all of them presented a new challenge for me, as I’d never done them before. Such a great experience that I would never have had without taking part in this program.
ME: If you woke up one day and could swap your identity with anyone, who would you choose?
KW: If I become a student, I would enjoy my day on campus, having lunch with my classmates in the canteen after class and maybe see a movie in the evening. If I became a professional, I’d use the opportunity to learn about my colleagues and experience their lives.
ME: Your fans are very supportive; your weibo followers reached more than 10 millions followers in four years, what things they have done that are most memorable and moving?
KW: In fact, all the things they have done in the past four years are memorable and moving, including day to day support and encouragement, I can feel them with me.
ME: Do you make your weibo post by yourself? Before you were a cool man but now you have become an interesting blog writer?
KW: Of course I post myself. Cool is only my external, but becoming an interesting post writer is the real me.
Mint Edition 60 Second Interview with Kris Wu
Mint Edition: What’s the first thing you do when you wake up in the morning?
Kris Wu: Open my eyes.
Mint Edition: Do you like cats or dogs?
Kris Wu: Dogs.
Mint Edition: Do you have any secret talents?
Kris Wu: Since it’s a secret, I can’t tell you about it.
Mint Edition: What movie did you cried the most in?
Kris Wu: Hachikō.
Mint Edition: What movie did you laughed the most in?
Kris Wu: All of Stephen Chow movies, my happy childhood.
Mint Edition: Do you like sneakers or leather shoes?
Kris Wu: Depends on what matches with the outfit.
Mint Edition: Which look of yours do you like the most?
Kris Wu: I like all of them.
Mint Edition: What question do you like being asked about?
Kris Wu: “What did you ate today?” Haha
Mint Edition: What question do you not like being asked about?
Kris Wu: A question like this, I’m not ready yet.
Mint Edition: From how you see it, what day is the most perfect?
Kris Wu: Every day is perfect if you spend it in a happy mood.
Mint Edition: If there are superpowers in this world, what superpower do you want to have?
Kris Wu: Superpower? Flying.
Mint Edition: If you can give an advice to your 13 year old self, what would it be?
Kris Wu: Please believe in yourself.
Mint Edition: Do you believe in love at first sight?
Kris Wu: I do. The feeling is more important.
Article provided by Becca
Kris Wu Interview 60 second trans by Susan
Photo by Mint Edition Weibo, Becca, Susan
Bahasa Trans by Tara Lee