Bai Ling (born October 10, 1970) is a Chinese-born American actress.
Bai Ling Picture Gallery
Bai Ling was born in Chengdu, People's Republic of China; "Bai",
her family name, literally means "white". Ling, a common Chinese given name,
means clever. Her father, Bai Yuxiang (白玉祥), was a musician in the People's
Liberation Army, and later a music teacher. Her mother, Chen Binbin (陈彬彬), was a
dancer, stage actress, and a literature teacher in Sichuan University; Bai's
maternal grandfather was a military officer of Kuomintang's army, and thus was
persecuted during the Cultural Revolution. In early 1980s, Bai Ling's parents
divorced, and later remarried. Her mother remarried to the writer Xu Chi (徐迟),
renowned for his report titled Goldbach's Conjecture, about Chinese
mathematician Chen Jingrun. Bai Ling has one older sister Bai Jie (白洁), who
works for the Chinese tax bureau, and a younger brother Bai Chen (白陈), who
emigrated to Japan and works for an American company.
Bai Ling has described herself as a very shy child who found that she best
expressed herself through acting and performing. She has said that acting allows
one to ignore how society tells one to behave and allows other parts within
oneself to be expressed. During the Cultural Revolution (1966–1976), she learned
how to perform by participating in Eight model plays her elementary school
shows. After her graduation from middle school, she was sent to do labor work at
Shuangliu (双流), a suburb county of Chengdu, where the Chengdu Shuangliu
International Airport is located.
Before long, Bai Ling managed to pass the People's Liberation Army's exams, and
became an "artist soldier" at Linzhi, Tibet. Her main activity there was
entertaining in the musical theater. She also served shortly as an Army nurse.
Three years later, she was discharged from the army, and joined People's Art
Theater of Chengdu, and became a professional actress. Her performance as a
young man in the stage play Yueqin and Little Tiger drew the attention of movie
director Teng Wenji (滕文骥), which gained her her first movie role in On The Beach
（1985), as a village girl who becomes a factory worker and struggles against her
father's will for her to marry her cousin.
In later years, Bai Ling appeared in several movies. She temporarily moved to
New York in 1991 to attend New York University's film department as a visiting
scholar, but later obtained a special visa that allowed her to remain in the
United States until she became a citizen in 1999.
Bai Ling had previously appeared in several Chinese movies when she was in
China. In 1984, Bai appeared as a fishing village girl in the movie On the Beach
(海滩). Later she filmed several other movies, including Suspended Sentence
(缓期执行), Yueyue (月月), Tears in Suzhou (泪洒姑苏) without much attention. Her role as
a girl with psychological disorder who had an affair with her doctor gained her
fame, in the movie Arc Light (弧光) directed by director Zhang Junzhao (张军钊). She
attended Moscow Movie Festival in 1989 due to this role. When she was in China,
her photographs had been used in magazines and calendars frequently, mostly with
her whole shoulder and upper breasts exposed, which was not common in China at
that time. Since coming to the United States in 1991, she has appeared in a
number of American movies.
Bai Ling began in the cult movie The Crow (1994), playing the half-sister/lover
of the main villain, Top Dollar. Hu guang was her most celebrated role in the
Chinese film industry, and Red Corner (1997) would be considered her break-out
role in English film. She was named one of People magazine's "50 Most Beautiful
People in the World" in 1998. She appeared in Chris Isaak's music video "Please"
in 1998. She shaved off her hair, which had exceeded a length of 36 in (90 cm)
for her role in Anna and the King, and is widely known in Thailand as "Tubtim",
her character's name from the film, even though the movie is officially banned
because of its depiction of the King of Siam. She filmed scenes for Star Wars:
Episode III (2005) as Senator Bana Breemu, but her role was cut during editing.
She claimed that this was because of her posing n--- for the June 2005 issue of
Playboy magazine, whose appearance on newsstands coincided with the movie's May
2005 release, but director George Lucas denied this, stating that the cut had
been made more than a year earlier. Her scenes were included in the "deleted
scenes" feature of the DVD release.
Later in 2005 Bai was a castmate of the VH1 program called But Can They Sing?.
The show gave several non-singer celebrities an attempt at singing on every
episode and then allowed the audience and home viewers to vote off one
contestant each week. Bai Ling was most famous for her risqué and raunchy
get-ups and her performances of Madonna's "Like a Virgin" and The Ramones' "I
Wanna Be Sedated". Bai was eliminated just before the grand finale but was
invited back on the final week for a special performance of Divinyls' "I Touch
Bai Ling has most recently appeared in the show Lost as part of Jack's
flashbacks. Her character, Achara, is believed to be associated with the Dharma
Initiative. She has predictive powers, and is the artist of Jack's tattoo
reading "He walks amongst us, but he is not one of us." Achara attests to
predicting Jack's leadership role on the island.
In interviews with the New York Daily News and FHM, Bai has said she is
bis--ual. Bai Ling is currently dating Philadelphia businessman and scientist
Scott DeGirolamo. Bai lived in Singapore for the summer of 2006 and frequently
patronised a now-defunct gay dance club called Happy (now renamed "Play"). She
was apparently performing research for her upcoming film, an undisclosed film
about the s-- trade.
Bai Ling is friends with Kimberly Stewart. She dated a play actor in the
mid-1980s in China, and music composer Qu Xiao-Song in the mid 1990s, and Chris
Isaak 1999-2001. She was briefly said to be romantically linked to Backstreet
Boy Nick Carter. Rumors spread that Bai was engaged to him, but Carter denied
the rumors, saying they were "just friends". More recently, Ling was linked with
Dionne Warwick's son, Damon Elliott, though the two are not currently dating.
On Thursday, February 14, 2008 Bai Ling was arrested at Los Angeles
International Airport for shoplifting two magazines and a package of batteries.
It was an "emotionally crazy" day, Ling explained to E! News. She was coping
with the "huge problem of breaking up before Valentine's Day ... Wrong
boyfriend." She also wrote on her blog after the incident: "Life happens to you
either you liked it or not, sometimes I feel you have to be so brave to stand in
front of the World, and just hope that people will have a tender heart toward
On March 5, 2008 she plead guilty to the charge of disturbing the peace. She was
then fined US$200 (US$700 when totaling the fine and penalties) for the action
at the airport.
Bai Ling was the winner of "Fug Madness 2008," a competition for worst-dressed
celebrity hosted by the Go Fug Yourself blog, which received 1.1 million votes
over 10 days.