ACTRESS Zhang Ziyi has got engaged, according to her boyfriend Aviv "Vivi" Nevo, who confirmed the rumour on Tuesday. He added that a wedding is being planned for next year.
Mr Nevo, a low-key Israeli billionaire stockholder of Time Warner, made the announcement while attending the annual conference of Allen & Company in Sun Valley, Idaho, the Associated Press reported.
The 29-year-old Beijing-born actress, now largely based in Hollywood, accompanied Mr Nevo to the event.
The 41-year-old tycoon has always been somewhat enigmatic, with his background not widely known to the public.
But American magazine Details ranked him No. 23 in its Power 50 list this year. He was an early backer of the Weinstein movie company; has a Los Angeles-based company that invests in various sectors including media and technology; and his wealth is inherited, reported the magazine.
He was previously linked with British supermodel Kate Moss and Brazilian model Jeisa Chiminazzo.
He and Zhang were first spotted together at an NBA game in January last year where they openly locked lips.
They came under fire for being a mixed-race couple, with men in China starting an online campaign against her on website Sina.com. She was seen as an example of someone who shunned men of her own race.
Still, she has not let the talk bother her, telling the press last November that she would not talk about her personal life, but that she was "very happy".
There have been rumours that they had been engaged since March this year, thanks to Zhang sporting a tell-tale diamond ring. The engagement was not confirmed by the actress, who told the press in June that she had no marriage plans.
She was last involved with Mr Eric Fok Kai San, the second son of the wealthy Fok family from Hong Kong, whose business is in Macau casinos. They met in March 2004 but split up two years later.
Mr Nevo was in China with Zhang last year when she worked on Chen Kaige's Mei Lanfang, and he reportedly visited Zhang's parents.
She is set to star with Hugh Grant in a romantic comedy, Lost For Words. -Agencies
For more my paper stories click here.