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November 21, 2013

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Authorities can’t find top movie director

Authorities have been unable to locate Zhang Yimou, one of China’s best-known movie directors, to investigate allegations he has breached China’s one-child policy, Xinhua news agency said yesterday.

In May, online reports surfaced that Zhang, 61, who dazzled the world in 2008 with his Beijing Olympic ceremonies, had at least seven children and could be liable for a 160 million yuan (US$26.3 million) fine, Xinhua said.

The family planning agency in the southern city of Wuxi — where Zhang’s wife Chen Ting is from — was said to be investigating the case.

Xinhua said the Wuxi Population and Family Planning Commission “has done everything possible to contact Zhang Yimou and Chen Ting and dispatched a work team that rushed to Beijing to look for Zhang Yimou, but there were no results, they could not find him.”

Local family planning officials said they had sent a dozen letters to the Beijing Film Group and the Guangxi Film Group to contact Zhang, according to Xinhua.

“In fact, at this point, we have not received a satisfactory reply,” said a representative from the Wuxi commission. “No matter who is involved, illegal births will have to be dealt with in accordance with the law.”

The government said last week it would allow couples to have a second child if one of the parents was an only child in the most significant relaxation of its policy in about three decades.


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