Fox News Calls John Cena 'An Absolute Wuss' for Apologizing to China

Fox News hosts have criticized actor John Cena after he apologized to fans in China for calling Taiwan a country during a promotional interview for his new film.

Speaking in Mandarin earlier this month, Cena, 44, a WWE wrestler turned movie star, told Taiwanese broadcaster TVBS that "Taiwan is the first country that can watch F9," in reference to his new film Fast & Furious 9, which opened in Chinese territories on May 21.

The actor's comments led to an uproar in China, as the country rejects any reference to Taiwan as an independent state and considers it part of its territory. Taiwan is a self-governed island and maintains that it is an independent country.

On Tuesday, Cena posted an apology video to his account on the Chinese social media site Weibo, saying: "I made a mistake, I must say right now. It's so so so so so so important, I love and respect Chinese people.

"I'm very sorry for my mistakes. Sorry. Sorry. I'm really sorry. You have to understand that I love and respect China and Chinese people."

His apology video became one of the most discussed topics on Weibo on Tuesday. More than 10,000 people commented on Cena's post, as he still faced criticism for his earlier remarks about Taiwan.

One commentator wrote: "Please say 'Taiwan is part of China' in Chinese, otherwise we will not accept," as another said: "You are being evasive."

Cena's apology video was discussed on Fox News, with Laura Ingraham criticizing him, saying: "The funny thing is that guy actually plays a tough guy, right? But he's really just owned."

While in a separate show, Fox Business host Lisa Kennedy Montgomery, known as Kennedy, called Cena a "wuss" and claimed that he was forced to film the apology.

"He did it because he is an absolute wuss and the studio probably had got on the phone and told him to do that because films aren't making any money in the U.S. because theaters have been locked down for over a year," Kennedy said.

Movie theaters in the U.S. have been closed for large parts of the last 14 months, but have now either reopened fully or with social distancing restrictions in all 50 states.

Fast and Furious 9 opened in China over the weekend, about a month before the U.S., and made at least $135 million over the two-day period, making it one of the biggest openings since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Cena has around 600,000 followers on Weibo and has been studying Mandarin since 2013, but told The Straits Times in 2017 that his proficiency is "remedial."

Newsweek has contacted Fox News and a representative of Cena for comment.

John Cena apologizes to Chinese fans
Professional wrestler and actor John Cena speaks during Paramount Pictures exclusive presentation during CinemaCon at The Colosseum at Caesars Palace on April 04, 2019 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Fox News hosts criticized Cena on Tuesday for apologizing to Chinese fans for calling Taiwan a country. Gabe Ginsberg/WireImage via Getty Images