Taiwan bans singer Lu Han

(Above from left) Singer Lu Han, actor Feng Shaofeng and singer Xue Zhiqian filming reality show Back To School.
(Above from left) Singer Lu Han, actor Feng Shaofeng and singer Xue Zhiqian filming reality show Back To School. PHOTO: WEIBO

TAIPEI • Chinese pop star Lu Han has been barred from entering Taiwan for two years, after he travelled to the island for a television shoot on a tourist visa, said reports yesterday.

Lu, a former member of K-pop group Exo, had arrived in Taipei on Sunday for a planned six-day shoot for the Zhejiang TV reality show Back To School, said Taiwan's United Daily News. The shoot made the entertainment headlines every day and fans waited outside Taipei Marriot Hotel hoping to see Lu, who was staying there.

But he was reported to the Taiwan immigration agency for working illegally on a tourist visa, after filming in Taipei Hwa Kang Arts School - the alma mater of stars such as television host Dee Hsu and singer Rainie Yang - on Monday.

The agency said it could not confirm that Lu was being paid a salary in Taiwan and therefore working illegally. But Lu is the only one who did not have the right visa for the shoot, when the other members of the crew all had work visas, it added.

On Tuesday, the Zhejiang TV show shouldered the blame, saying it had been negligent in applying for visas for the cast, reported China's NetEase website. It said in a statement: "Because of the error of the show's crew, artists who have no responsibility have been affected. We are sorry."

Lu, 26, cannot enter Taiwan on a tourist visa for five years, but he can apply for a work visa two years later, the immigration agency said. Members of the crew left the island on Tuesday and Lu will depart on Wednesday, it added.

Back To School is a Chinese adaptation of a South Korean show. Its first season featured stars such as Hong Kong actor Wallace Chung going back to high school. Its second season will feature Lu and Taiwanese singer Ella Chen of girl group S.H.E.

Chen had returned to Taipei from Shanghai on Monday for the shoot, which was cancelled on Tuesday, said Taiwan's China Times. Later this month, there will be another shoot for the show in Hefei, China, added the report.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 05, 2016, with the headline 'Taiwan bans singer Lu Han'. Print Edition | Subscribe