Many Chinese netizens declared themselves heartbroken to learn of popular actress Tang Wei and South Korean director Kim Tae-yong's sudden engagement recently. But the shock of the announcement was soon overshadowed by the news that the two held an impromptu wedding in Sweden.
Tang's agency confirmed that the couple wed at the house of late Swedish filmmaker Ingmar Bergman on remote Faro Island on July 12.
According to the agency, as diehard Bergman fans, the two decided on the spur of the moment to have a private wedding in accordance with the local customs, to commemorate their pilgrimage to the auteur's home. The wedding was a special memento that they gave to themselves as cinema professionals. The official wedding ceremony will be held this autumn, with family members present.
"I believe every woman wouldn't miss an opportunity that can change her destiny. If you grasp it, it may change your life," Tang told news portal NetEase when asked about her marriage. The Chinese movie star is now learning Korean.
Tang and Kim, 45, met in 2010, when Tang starred in Kim's English-language movie Late Autumn. The movie is about Tang, a prisoner released on 72-hours parole, who meets a South Korean man on-the-run played by Hyun Bin, during her visit to her family in Seattle.
The 35-year-old star is not the only Chinese celebrity to marry a well-known South Korean in the entertainment industry.
Taiwan pop singer Valen Hsu, 39, became engaged last year to Choi Jae-sung, who is in senior management at South Korea's top music agency, SM Entertainment. They are planning an intimate wedding in Seoul in September.
South Korea actress Park Chae-rim met Chinese actor Gao Ziqi when they worked together on a Chinese TV series. Gao proposed to her in June and they will get married in October.
The Beijing News reported that Gao says they talk things over when they have a difference of opinion and that he believes men should respect women's opinions and defer to them. The popularity of South Korean TV series has seen numerous young Chinese women declare themselves as fans of South Korean men.
"I like male South Korean stars because they are handsome, romantic, gentle and with a personality," says Jiang Nan, 28. "If I could choose, I would like to marry a South Korean man."