Chinese director Zhang Yimou fined $1.2 million for having three children

By Daniel S Levine,

Popular Chinese director Zhang Yimou has received a heavy fine for violating China’s family planning laws, which restricts urban families to one child. Zhang and his wife allegedly have three children.

Zhang came under scrutiny last year, when rumors began spreading online that he had fathered children with different women. It was then confirmed that the man behind the 2008 Beijing Olympics Opening Ceremony was under investigation by the government.

Just last month, it was reported that his fine could be up to $1.2 million, or 7.48 million yuan. Now, Xinhuanet.com is reporting that local authorities confirmed that will receive the fine. Authorities said they sent a letter to his home, demanding a “social maintenance fee.”

The Associated Press reports that urban couples can only have one child, while rural couples can have up to two if the first child is a girl. Zhang already had a legal child with his first wife, but he had another child with his current wife, Chen Ting, when they were not married. His studio said that Zhang, 63, did father three children with Chen, but denied other rumors that he had children with any other women.

The couple have 30 days to pay the fine. Zhang hasn’t made any new comments, but previously said he would pay.

Zhang’s credits include The Flowers of War with Christian Bale, Hero and House of Flying Daggers.

image: Wikimedia Commons



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