Fan Bingbing is one of the most recognisable faces in China’s movie industry. So it sent huge ripples through the entertainment world when, for a part of 2018, she disappeared. The story highlights the tightrope on which many of China’s new elite walk – “You play ball, or you are screwed. So you play ball.”
The premise of this piece is extraordinary – the discovery of “a precise geological transcript of the most important sixty minutes of Earth’s history” – that is to say the wave of destruction caused by the asteroid that hit sixty-six million years ago, an event that wiped out 99.9999% of all living organisms on the planet.