Jackie Chan and fellow stars marched silently to Hong Kong’s government headquarters, protesting a gossip magazine’s cover photo that was secretly taken of a pop singer changing backstage.
The celebrities, wearing black T-shirts, handed over a petition Tuesday denouncing the photos of Gillian Chung, of the popular duo Twins. The stars urged the government to tighten laws on racy publications.
Chung was shown adjusting her bra backstage after a concert in Malaysia’s Genting Highlands. The photo appeared on the cover of the current issue of Easy Finder weekly.
Government regulators have received a deluge of complaints. Hong Kong’s Obscene Articles Tribunal has classified the magazine issue “indecent,” which could lead to prosecution. Chan, star of the “Rush Hour” movies, and fellow celebrities attended a TV special protesting the photos Monday.
Chung has filed for a court injunction demanding Easy Finder turn over the photos. She has reported the matter to both Hong Kong and Malaysian police.
Hong Kong’s celebrity-obsessed culture, its small size and its status as a hub for Chinese entertainment has made for a tense relationship among local paparazzi and movie and pop stars.
Journalists have opposed restrictions on their coverage as a threat to press freedom. Legal reforms propose banning secret surveillance by private parties, but the government is still considering the recommendations.
Asked if paparazzi photos should be banned completely, Chan said he believes celebrities should be held accountable for their actions.
“As public figures, we should allow our pictures to be taken. If we crash our cars when we’re drunk, it serves us right. People should scold us,” the 52-year-old actor said. “But for a girl to be photographed when she’s in a changing room, such a private place, is despicable behavior.”