Asian stars at Cannes: The fabulous, the flabulous and the flat-out disastrous

The Cannes Film Festival is the world's premium showcase of both cinema and fashion. Which Asian stars have shone on the red carpet this year and who hasn't? Lifestyle rounds them up.


There are red carpet stars in Cannes. Then there are megawatt movie stars like Shu Qi. Her choices - an intricate nude gown capped with exquisite jewellery, or a black dress halved by a huge belt - are almost beside the point. Here is a woman the camera loves and who loves it right back, with every smile, every twinkle and every tilt of her head.

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China's biggest star now, Fan Bingbing, is an actress second and a fashion star first. Year after year, she pulls out all the stops to make a splash at Cannes.

This year, she has dressed to Barbie perfection in a pink embroidered Ralph & Russo gown...

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Descended like a forest fairy in a floaty Marchesa gown and a crown of flowers...

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And done an Audrey Hepburn in a dainty lace dress.

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Chinese cinema's other Bingbing, Li Bingbing, is more conventional in her choices for Cannes. Be it a Zuhair Murad (below, 1st picture) or an Elie Saab (below, 2nd picture), it is essentially the same sparkly sheer gown.

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So what if her underarm flab is pushing out of an armhole? Bollywood star Aishwarya Rai Bachchan is fabulous, whether in an emerald Elie Saab, ruby Oscar de la Renta, a purple Elie Saab or an asymmetrical Ralph & Russo.

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A friendly note to Indian actress Sonam Kapoor: Hi beautiful, can we talk? You know those friends of yours who encouraged you to pick something bold for Cannes, like a gown that gives you extra hips (below, 1st picture) or a gigantic feathery chest (below, 2nd picture)? Please delete them from your phone and all your social media accounts. People who do that to you are not friends, okay?

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Hong Kong star Angelababy is 26 going on 16, in a girlish Christian Dior dress (below, 1st picture) and a Valentino baby doll dress (below, 2nd picture).

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He is from China and his date is from America. But have no doubt, actor Sun Zuyang and socialite Paris Hilton are totally from Planet Tacky.

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K-drama star Gianna Jun looks gorgeous - but seems uneasy - in a pleated Gucci gown.

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What a brilliant idea for a premiere - couture nightwear. Korean actress Ko Ah Sung's ensemble is shiny enough for night-time photos, and comfy enough to sleep in when jetlag strikes during the movie.

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Thai actress Araya A. Hargate is sweet and elegant in an enormous Ashi Studio gown. No sign of a meringue at all.

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Zhang Xinyu, the Chinese actress best-known as the former girlfriend of Hong Kong actor Ron Ng, has clearly been studying Fan Bingbing. Zhang's China doll hairdo and dramatic gown are straight out of Fan's playbook, all right - for Cannes 2012. Three years too late to the party, Zhang's choices feel uninspired and her peasant blanket of a dress is just unfortunate.

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