May 14, 2021

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The rise of Phei-nomenon

Shan Fei YoungKnown as Phei Yong to legions of his fans, he has become one of the most sought-after influencers in the domestic Chinese entertainment industry.

His massive success is backed by more than half a million followers on Instagram and YouTube, and his presence on projects with brands like Bell & Ross and the movie Men in Black: International.

For Chan, this was his rapid rise to fame after he won the Be My Star competition on MY FM in 2015, which also led to a party with the station.

The 27-year-old admits that he is sometimes even surprised at his success.

“At first, a lot of people assumed I wouldn’t win. Looking at (level) my Mandarin proficiency at the time, I thought the other contestants had a better chance.”

In an exclusive interview with TheSun, a native of Kelantan shares his journey so far and his plans for the near future.

How was it working with Bell & Ross?

It was a great honor. When I first heard the news, I thought it was a joke because I had always assumed the brand was working exclusively with older public figures, those in their 30s or 40s.

What aspect of the brand makes you want to work with them?

I think the most important thing is that I have to really love the brand. If you look at my platform, you will see that the brands I work with are the ones that I have been using.

The other factor is my relationship with brand management.

But the most important thing is to know if fans can relate to the brand. If they are not able to, then I do not see the purpose of cooperation.

How did you feel when you saw yourself in Men in Black?

I was honored to be a part of it. In fact, it is one of my best accomplishments. There is a funny story of how this happened.

I was busy shooting and kept getting a call from an unknown number. At first, I didn’t realize but the person was persistent. Finally, I answered and the person (from Sony Pictures) introduced himself.

He told me that they wanted to send me to Bali to interview three international celebrities. She assumed it was a joke call. So, I played with time but spoke for more than 10 minutes.

Later on, I talked to my sister who is my manager. She told me it was real!

What struggles do you face as a public figure?

For me, the only struggle is constantly having to maintain my overall appearance. Before I became famous, I was very casual and comfortable when I got outside.

However, it is a small price to pay because I enjoy being in the public eye.

How can you stand out in such a competitive industry?

Focus on my business as there is no need to constantly compare yourself to your “competitors”. Unlike traditional media, there is enough room for creative people these days to grow and do what they love. I am also a firm believer in saying “Content is king.” No matter what happens, your content has to be content. Hence, I always guarantee my content is good.

What are your goals for 2021?

At the moment, I have plans for a diversified show. The upcoming installment will have two parts and both will be filmed in May. I am also building my own clothing brand.

I’ve been wanting to do this for two years. Since I am promoting other brands why not create my own brand?

I think this is the time to do so.