How will tying the knot affect Jay Chou's career?

How will tying the knot affect Jay Chou's career?

In his arsenal of hits, Mandopop superstar Jay Chou waxes lyrical about romance in the Mesopotamian plains and Tigris river, likening relationships to tornadoes, ancient teapots, peonies and the fragrance of sandalwood.

To his fans across Asia, the enigmatic entertainer, who will turn 36 next month, has immortalised himself through his imaginative songwriting.

Taiwan's Peter Pan of music never grows old. But in the real world, Chou is every bit a typical human being.

Next month, he will also tie the knot with 21-year-old Taiwanese-Australian model Hannah Quinlivan, his girlfriend of four years.

It signals the end of an era for the Mandopop king, who has been considered one of Asian showbiz's most eligible bachelors for more than a decade.

M looks at his latest affirmation of love, as well as his last hurrah in his musical efforts and fashion business before he walks down the aisle.

RELATIONSHIP

Chou and Quinlivan have kept their relationship low profile, neither confirming nor denying it.

In June, amid swirling wedding rumours, Chou - whose rumoured exes include pop diva Jolin Tsai and host Patty Hou - announced at a Taipei press conference for the Golden Melody Awards that he "will definitely marry before he turns 36 in January 2015".

Last month, he publicly acknowledged Quinlivan as his partner by posting pictures of them together on his Sina Weibo microblog, with a message to his fans: "All of you wished that I would be happy. It is now time for me to share my happiness."

Earlier this week, in an interview with Taiwanese radio station Hit FM, Chou debunked Internet chatter that he had proposed to Quinlivan at London's Hyde Park - he was in London for work.

He was recently cast in the Hollywood thriller, Now You See Me: The Second Act, slated for a 2016 release. Co-starring Woody Harrelson, Mark Ruffalo and Daniel Radcliffe, it will mark Chou's second Hollywood outing after 2011's The Green Hornet.

"If I were to propose, it would be in a mysterious place," he said, adding that his wedding banquet will be held on his birthday, Jan 18.

Chou told local Chinese magazine U-Weekly of his desire for a normal life away from the spotlight.

"I hope that our Chinese showbiz scene can take a leaf from Hollywood. Celebrity couples should be able to take their children out for walks or go shopping like it's the most natural thing to do," he said.

MUSIC

Through his songs and music videos, Chou has transported us to various fantasies, from silly seafarers (Hydrophobic Sailor) to sexy vampires (The Era) to sword-fighting heroes (Fireworks Cool Easily).

With his 13th studio album, Aiyo, Not Bad (his favourite catchphrase), which is available on iTunes from this Friday, Chou pays homage to silent film icon Charlie Chaplin.

The artwork for lead single Extra Large Shoes has him channelling Chaplin to humorous effect. Chou aces the latter's physical appearance, from trademark bowler hat right down to the moustache and cane.

"Extra Large Shoes is a retro-style track, with rich and interesting lyrics by Vincent Fang," he said in a press release via his record label Sony Music.

"I hope everyone can become happier and happier while listening to it."

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