Kidman Skips Quarantine to Film, HKers Aren't Happy

She was granted exemption to film 'Expats'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 19, 2021 10:30 AM CDT
Kidman Skips Quarantine to Film, HKers Aren't Happy
Water sits on a table in a room at an isolation hotel in Hong Kong, Friday, Aug. 13, 2021.   (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)

Hong Kong has some of the world' strictest COVID quarantine regulations—and residents aren't happy that Nicole Kidman has been allowed to bypass them. The Australian actress, who stars in new Amazon series Expats, arrived on a private jet from Sydney for filming last week and has been seen shopping in the city, according to local news site HK01. She was exempted from the mandatory seven-day hotel quarantine for arrivals from Australia, which has now been increased to 14 days. Before Kidman's arrival the rules had been largely viewed as evenly applied, with HSBC Chairman Mark Tucker required to complete a mandatory 21-day hotel quarantine after returning from the UK, per the Hollywood Reporter.

The exemption caused a major backlash on social media, with residents complaining that even the territory's Olympic athletes had not been granted waivers. Others called it insensitive for Amazon to use Hong Kong as the setting for Expats and another show about expatriates, Exciting Times, while the city's freedoms are being crushed by Beijing, reports, the Hong Kong Free Press."As HKers are imprisoned and exiled, silenced and traumatised by state violence, we get not 1 but [two] Prime Video series about expats," tweeted journalist Ryan Ho Kilpatrick. "How much more does the city need to suffer before they care about actual HKers lives?” Authorities said Kidman was granted a waiver "for the purpose of performing designated professional work" and was complying with conditions including minimizing contact with the public, RTHK reports. (Read more Hong Kong stories.)

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