Famed Chinese Director Defamed Ex-Soldier in Memoir, Court Says

Chen Kaige had refused to apologize for his unverified account of the plaintiff following a court decision.

An acclaimed Chinese director has found himself in an unwanted spotlight after it was revealed this week that he disobeyed a court order from a lawsuit dating back to 2014.

Beijing’s Haidian District court said Chen Kaige — known for the Academy Award-nominated movie “Farewell My Concubine” — had failed to execute the court’s instructions after it found him guilty in a defamation case, according to a judgment partly published in state-owned newspaper Legal Daily on Tuesday. The court had given Chen seven days to issue an apology to the plaintiff in three designated newspapers, including Legal Daily, saying it would disclose the verdict publicly if Chen failed to do so. It is unclear when the court issued the judgment.

The director hadn’t responded to the court order by time of publication on Tuesday.

The plaintiff, Qiu Luguang, sued Chen over the way he was portrayed in the director’s memoir, “My Youth: Autobiography of Chen Kaige.” The former military officer claimed that the unnamed character — identified only as “K’s husband” in the 2009 book — bears striking similarities to Qiu, and that the writer depicts him as “overbearing and arrogant.” In the memoir, the husband is sentenced to 11 years in prison for several crimes, including assassination, which the court said “belittles the plaintiff’s character.” Continue to read the full story here.


–This article first appeared on Sixth Tone