'Unfair win': Julian Cheung's '5-minute wedding' with Anita Yuen in Call Me By Fire draws criticism

If your wedding is supposed to be the happiest day of your life, why not drag on the celebrations for two decades? 

Hong Kong singer-actor Julian Cheung has managed to pull off this feat with his wife of 21 years, Hong Kong actress Anita Yuen.

On an episode of Call Me By Fire 2 on Sept 30, Julian — one of the show’s most popular contestants — and  Anita, both 51, held a wedding ceremony on stage during his team’s performance, but not everyone was impressed by Julian’s ‘stunt’.

The catch is that Julian and Anita have been married since 2001. They didn’t hold a wedding, which made Julian feel that he “always owed her a debt in my heart”.

He even attributed his sense of guilt to his parents’ divorce and watching his mother be unhappy, which made him want to be “better” to his wife.

Julian and Anita have always maintained that they would hold their official wedding ceremony when they turn 60, but Julian decided “to give her a wedding ten years earlier”, during an episode of Call Me By Fire.

Some netizens were left unimpressed by Julian’s rationale, commenting on the “five-minute wedding”: “The competition is important, but the price of love is greater. He should retire from the competition and hold a good wedding for his wife.”

They also noted that Julian had previously ‘proposed’ to Anita on the couples’ variety show All The Way With You (2015) despite the couple already having been married for well over a decade. The pair also finally took wedding photos 14 years after their marriage.

The stage wedding performance gave Julian’s team the the most votes that week and they won over the competing team led by Richie Jen. 

Viewers thought Julian’s team won unfairly — their performance was centred on the wedding and there was less singing compared to the one by Richie’s team, which included band performances, singing and Chinese opera. 

As a result, two members from Richie’s team — Hao Yun and Johnny Zhang — were eliminated from Call Me By Fire. 

In addition, a day before the pre-recorded episode was aired, fellow contestant Alec Su posted on Weibo congratulating Jin Han, another contestant on Call Me By Fire 2, on his new drama. 

When Jin Han replied that he would “definitely report to Alec too if he were in a relationship one day”, Alec made a snide now-deleted comment: “Find a show to hold a wedding too.”


Fans were amused by Alec’s response, with a cheeky fan even volunteering to be the bride if Alec, 49, were to hold a wedding on a show. “We’ll do better than Julian”, she added. 


Call Me By Fire 2 pits 32 established male celebrities — all past their prime — from mainland China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand and the US against each other to form a winning boyband together.

Contestants include Wilber Pan, Richie Jen, Darren Wang, Kenji Wu, Shin, Chang Chen-yue, Van Ness Wu, Jordan Chan, Alex To, Raymond Lam and Ron Ng.

ALSO READ: Julian Cheung gives Anita Yuen wedding ceremony on Call Me By Fire, 21 years after getting married


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