Australian-Hongkongese Howard X and Russel White of hitherto unconfirmed nationality attracted the attention they expected as they took a walk in Hanoi Friday.
They walked from the Sofitel Legend Metropole hotel to the Hanoi Opera House for their summit and were mobbed by both passersby, local and international reporters.
Vietnam is beautiful and safe, they remarked, adding they would stay in the capital city until February 28, when the summit ends.
The duo announced plans to go to town on two of famed Vietnamese specialties, the pho rice noodle soup and nem cuon, Vietnamese spring rolls. Howard said these are his favorite dishes. They also plan to visit museums in the city to learn more about Vietnamese history, the said.
As befits leaders of their stature, the duo were accompanied by four bodyguards, and a private car was on hand to take them around Hanoi.
The Trump-Kim impersonator duo is accompanied by bodyguards. Photo by VnExpress
“I have only seen [the duo] on photos before. I think the one impersonating the North Korean leader is taller and more handsome in real life though,” said Heewon, a South Korean tourist who was walking near the Sword Lake.
Howard X, 30, told VnExpress earlier he was staying in an unnamed hotel in the heart of the capital after flying in from Hong Kong.
A music producer by trade, Howard X has also been making a living as an impersonator of North Korean leader Kim Jong-un since 2012, mostly invited to inaugurate supermarkets and malls, and to join birthday parties.
Howard also went to Singapore ahead of the first summit last June, and his appearance was captured by international media outlets at the time.
He and another Donald Trump impersonator, Chicago-based music teacher Dennis Alan, posed for selfies on the streets of Singapore. Whoever wanted a selfie with them had to pay $11 and download an app that they were advertising. Details of the app have not been reported.
Russel White, the Donald Trump impersonator in Hanoi this time, has chosen not to reveal more details of his identity.
Howard has also discovered lookalikes of Russian President Vladimir Putin and Filipino President Rodrigo Duterte. He said he was looking for impersonators of Chinese President Xi Jinping, Brazilian President Jair Bolsonaro and Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro next.
His excuse for being a professional impersonator is this: “I was born with this face, I’ve got to live with it.”
Anh Ngoc, Pham Huyen
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