Eric Tsang, 69, Seen Kissing 26-Year-Old Malaysian Model, Says He Was Just “Being Polite”
Hong Kong veteran star Eric Tsang, 69, seems to have landed himself in a bit of a pickle again after a video of him kissing a model went viral.
Last week, Malaysian model Lai Bala, better known as Lebara, shared a clip from her 26th birthday celebration on her socials with the caption: "This year, I blew out the candles with the ‘Prize Master’ and [he] wished me a happy birthday. My wish this year is for world peace and no hatred,” referring to Eric’s nickname on ‘90s variety show Super Trio Series.
In the clip, Eric, together with a few friends, can be seen singing Lebara the birthday song.
He later walked to her side and said: "Lebara hopes to have the chance to blow out the candles with the Prize Master. Okay." They then blew out the candles together before Eric gave Lebara a kiss on the cheek.
Eric's actions have sparked quite a discussion online, with netizens speculating if Eric and Lebara are a couple.
Netizens who are certain that there's something going on have said that the pair seem more like “grandfather and granddaughter” due to their 43-year age gap.
There were also some who felt that what Eric did was "no big deal” and that a kiss on the cheek is very common in Western cultures.
Eric has since addressed the matter, saying that he was “just being polite” and didn’t expect it to be blown out of proportion. He added that he does not know Lebara and it was their first time meeting.
“I was with a few people and some friends called and asked if they could join us for some drinks. They said it’s their friend’s birthday and her wish is for you to sing her a birthday song. So after singing I went by and gave her a kiss. I was just being polite. I don’t know what’s the big deal… I have a clear conscience.”
When asked if he feels vilified, he replied: “Well, as public figures, we’re used to it.”
According to reports, Lebara is from Kuala Lumpur and is signed under Now Models.
The 1.8m tall model, who has appeared in jewellery and eye-drop commercials with TVB actor Benjamin Yuen, is friends with artistes like singer Hins Cheung, as well as Eric's pals, hosts Natalis Chan and Lawrence Cheng. She is also rumoured to be goddaughter of Hong Kong tycoon Lawrence Yu.
She is well-connected too and has been spotted attending high SES parties and events.
Photos: Lebara/Instagram, PBE Media