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Why Chinese movie fans are naming Hollywood stars like Scarlett Johansson ‘soup dumpling’, Entertainment News

Attempts to bridge the linguistic hole between Chinese and English can typically end in one thing being misplaced in translation.

This has helped spawn a cottage business on mainland social media, giving Hollywood movie stars ingenious and sometimes cute Chinese nicknames.

Among them is Scarlett Johansson, who starred alongside Bill Murray within the aforementioned 2003 Tokyo blockbuster Lost in Translation, whose nickname refers to considered one of China’s most celebrated culinary delights.

The phenomenon is partly associated to difficulties encountered in saying English names, however there’s extra to the endearing nicknames than meets the attention or meets the ear.

It typically makes lengthy international names simpler to recollect whereas giving them a type of Chinese which means.

For instance, Ryan Gosling is nicknamed “General Gao” as a result of his surname is pronounced gao siling in Mandarin, and siling means “commanding officer.”

The Chinese web was in turmoil after US singer Katy Perry was dubbed “Fruit Sister” or shui guo jie for her penchant for fruit-style costumes.

Another cause for the joy is to permit web customers to rapidly and simply share their mutual curiosity in films on social media.

It will also be related to the superstar’s look and salient function, a Chinese homonym of their English identify, or with the roles they play in a movie.

However, the overriding motivation behind the rise in nicknames for western stars is that it is a means of expressing endearment.

Here are just a few different nicknames and the tales behind them:

Lady Gaga bie bie – “ground beetle”


This has nothing to do with Lady Gaga’s identify. It stems from the edgy means she dressed earlier than hitting the large time. In Mandarin, a floor beetle known as a tu bie or bie bie, referring to somebody who clothes rustically or distinctively.

Timothée Chalamet tian cha – “sweet tea”

Timothée Chalamet’s pronunciation is just like tian cha in Chinese, which implies candy tea.

Billie Eilish bili – “green pear”

Billie pronunciation is just like bili in Mandarin, which implies inexperienced pear.

Tom Cruise a tang ge – “Brother Tom”

Tom sounds like Tang in Mandarin, a hyperlink posted by a tv information anchor in China whose use led to the nickname changing into widespread.

Britney Spears xiao tian tian – “little darling”


For Chinese fans, Britney Spears seems to be very stunning and cute. Also, “sweet” is pronounced tian in Mandarin.

Jessica Chastain lao mo jie – “model worker”

In Mandarin, the time period Lao Mo is used to commend a hardworking particular person. Chastain acquired this honor as a result of the Chinese acknowledge the laborious work she put into producing seven movies in a single yr.

Jennifer Lawrence da biao jie – “big cousin”


One netizen who was very keen on Lawrence described the actress as an enormous cousin of hers, and progressively the identify caught and ultimately began trending on mainland social media.

Chris Hemsworth chui ge – “Hammer Brother”


In the movie Thor, during which Hemsworth performs the principle character, his weapon of alternative is a hammer. This and Hemsworth’s bravery and physique led to the nickname.

Selena Gomez wa wa lian – “baby face”

This identify derives from the singer’s child face and girl-next-door smile. Also, Selena sounds just like Shalian Na in Mandarin, which implies “stupid face.”

Ryan Reynolds xiao jian jian – “little cheek”

Chinese fans of his Deadpool movie have dubbed him “Little Jianjian” as a result of the character he portrays within the movie appears to mock and giggle on the world.

Scarlett Johansson shui jiao – “soup dumplings”


The identify comes from her first journey to China in 2011, when she ate a scalding scorching soup dumpling dish in China and burned her tongue.

Benedict Cumberbatch Juan Fu – “curly blessings”


His signature Sherlock Holmes coiffure led to Cumberbatch being referred to as “Curly Blessing” or Juan Fu. In Mandarin, Juan means curly and Fu is the Chinese identify Holmes, which symbolizes luck or blessings.

This article was first printed within the South China Morning Post.

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