Chinese actress Shi Yanfei's cringeworthy blunder on Cannes red carpet

The actress says she was not able to understand requests from photographers and ushers to move along the red carpet. — Picture from Weibo/Shi Yanfei
The actress says she was not able to understand requests from photographers and ushers to move along the red carpet. — Picture from Weibo/Shi Yanfei

PETALING JAYA, May 17 — Chinese social media users have been cringing at actress Shi Yanfei’s behaviour on the red carpet at the 72nd Cannes Film Festival.

The Story of Yanxi Palace actress reportedly overstayed her welcome in the spotlight and mistook shouts from photographers to get out of the way as requests for more poses.

When a female usher arrived to escort her off the red carpet, Shi ignored her and continued to smile for the cameras which by then were already pointing elsewhere.

The 32-year-old has become the subject of ridicule on Chinese social media with some people questioning why the actress even got invited to the prestigious event in the first place.

Shi later took to Chinese microblogging site Weibo to explain her side of the story, saying that the chaotic atmosphere at the festival might have led to misunderstandings between her and the ushers.

“I believe every actor or actress that has the opportunity to walk the Cannes red carpet will be extremely nervous and excited. I am not immune to this.

“There were many media outlets from different countries that day. It was extremely loud, and the foreign media was very passionate. They kept yelling for more photos.”

“When the staff came up to me, I could not hear a single word she said. Until now, I am not even sure if I was being ushered off or not,” she wrote, according to entertainment portal Jayne Stars.

TODAY Online reported that when Shi found out she was trending on social media, she initially thought people were celebrating her presence at Cannes.

“I wasn’t even fully awake when my team dragged me out of bed. When they told me that my name was one of the most searched topics online, I felt secretly delighted.

“But when I went online, I was a little bit shocked.”

The Singapore news portal also included reactions from social media users who were not impressed with Shi’s blunder and expressed feelings of shame on her behalf.

“It’s the same kind of news every year, these actresses are really embarrassing us out there,” wrote one user.

“She has embarrassed us overseas, this time I’m really angry,” said another.

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