April Fool has another bitter meaning because of him
March 27, 2021
When we talk about April, the first thing that comes to our mind is "April Fool". However, for the Chinese, this has another bitter meaning: our beloved singer and actor, Leslie Cheung, committed suicide on April 1st, 2003. This was a complete shock, and as it has happened on the April Fool's day, everyone thought it was a bad joke..until it was confirmed. Since then April Fool is not just a day for fooling your friends and others: for some people it's also a date to mourn Leslie. Why this person had such a huge impact, that even today lots of people would still mourn him? Here are some important reasons:
(1) His talent and spirit
Leslie was an incredibly talented singer and actor, his music was very influential back in the 1980s to early 1990s, his songs were so popular that fans were literally fighting against other singers and developed a tribe. However, Leslie didn't want to see how his fans and others got hurt because of his music, and in the year 1990 he made a shocking decision: to quit! This means he stopped singing - simple as that. Leslie would rather give up his fame than continue seeing others fight, and it's fair to say that no other singer have ever done that in history - he was the first one. However, this didn't stop him from performing - he started his career as an actor and continued giving people amazing films with his participation (which soon became classics) until his unfortunate death.
(2）His death was just too sudden
Back in 2003 depression and mental illness didn't have that much awareness compared to nowadays, many people were puzzled: "Why did he do that? He was loved by everyone and had everything". The more heartbreaking part is his final words on paper: "I didn't do anything bad, why?" This made people even sadder. Leslie was young (he was only 46 years old at that time), had a booming career and was loved by everyone. Why would he choose such way to die? This question has no answer, and this is why people still can't get over it nowadays.
(3) His appearance and international influence
Of course, most celebrities are known for their appearance but Leslie was a special person, he was above the top. Today in HongKong there's still a saying that "no matter how good-looking you are, you will never be better than Leslie". On the other hand he was not only famous in China, but also in Japan, Korea and South East Asia. You can see from this video that even Jeon Ji Hyun - a Korean actress also known as "Korean goddess" - acted like a little shy girl in front of Leslie. This is how popular he was.
Summary: If you are interested, we suggest you watching some of his famous movies and listening to his songs to get to know him better.
Here is the list (in Chinese):
Written by Francesco Peng for IMCPI