Chow Yun-Fat

Chow Yun-fat (周潤發), SBS (born 18 May 1955), previously known as Donald Chow, is a Hong Kong actor.

When Chow appeared in the 1980 TV series The Bund on TVB, it did not take long for him to become a household name in Hong Kong. The series, about the rise and fall of a gangster in 1930s Shanghai, was a hit throughout Asia and made Chow a star.

Although Chow continued his TV success, his goal was to become a big-screen actor. However, his occasional ventures into low-budget films were disastrous. Success finally came when he teamed up with director John Woo in the 1986 gangster action-melodrama A Better Tomorrow, which swept the box offices in Asia and established Chow and Woo as megastars. A Better Tomorrow won him his first Best Actor award at the Hong Kong Film Awards. It was the highest-grossing film in Hong Kong history at the time, and set a new standard for Hong Kong gangster films. Taking the opportunity, Chow quit TV entirely. With his new image from A Better Tomorrow, he made many more ‘gun fu’ or ‘heroic bloodshed’ films, such as A Better Tomorrow 2 (1987), Prison on Fire, Prison on Fire II, The Killer (1989), A Better Tomorrow 3 (1990), Hard Boiled (1992) and City on Fire, an inspiration for Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs.

Chow may be best known for playing honorable tough guys, whether cops or criminals, but he has also starred in comedies like Diary of a Big Man (1988) and Now You See Love, Now You Don’t (1992) and romantic blockbusters such as Love in a Fallen City (1984) and An Autumn’s Tale (1987), for which he was named best actor at the Golden Horse Awards. He brought together his disparate personae in the 1989 film God of Gamblers (Du Shen), directed by the prolific Wong Jing, in which he was by turns suave charmer, a broad comedian and an action hero. The film surprised many, became immensely popular, broke Hong Kong’s all-time box office record, and spawned a series of gambling films as well as several comic sequels starring Andy Lau and Stephen Chow. The often tough demeanor and youthful appearance of Chow Yun-Fat’s characters has earned him the nickname “Babyface Killer”. Chow Yun-fat at the premiere of Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End in 2007 The Los Angeles Times proclaimed Chow Yun-Fat “the coolest actor in the world”. In the mid ’90s, Chow moved to Hollywood in an ultimately unsuccessful attempt to duplicate his success in Asia. His first two films, The Replacement Killers (1998) and The Corruptor (1999), were box office disappointments. In his next film Anna and the King (1999), Chow teamed up with Jodie Foster, but the film suffered at the box office. Chow accepted the role of Li Mu-Bai in the (2000) film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. It became a winner at both the international box office and the Oscars. In 2003, Chow came back to Hollywood and starred in Bulletproof Monk. In 2006, he teamed up with Gong Li in the film Curse of the Golden Flower, directed by Zhang Yimou.

In 2007, Chow played the pirate captain Sao Feng in Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End. However, his part was omitted when the movie was shown in mainland China, where government censors felt that Chow’s character “vilified and humiliated” Chinese people.

In the poorly received film Dragonball Evolution, Chow Yun-fat played Master Roshi. In 2014, Chow returned to Hong Kong cinema in From Vegas to Macau. For the part, he lost 13 kg within 10 months. In October 2014, Chow supported the Umbrella Movement, a civil rights movement for universal suffrage in Hong Kong. His political stance eventually resulted in censorship by the Chinese government. In February 2015, Chow reprised his role as Ken in the sequel From Vegas to Macau II. He was paid 5 million USD (39 million HKD) for the film. [wikipedia]

Chow Yun-Fat filmography

Poster for the movie "Triads: The Inside Story"

Triads: The Inside Story

Li Man-Ho comes to Hong Kong after his father’s death following a double crossed peace meeting at the hands of a rival gang. The family’s business begins to crumble as rival organizations stir violence and trouble in acknowledgment of this weakness. Li Man-Ho reluctantly agrees after pressure from other members to temporarily act as leader in order to restore stability and order. But he is soon faced with violence, betrayal and confusion, in this world … Read more

The Seventh Curse

A young heroic cop in the jungle of Thailand attempts to rescue a beautiful girl from being sacrificed to the “Worm Tribe” she belongs to. As a result, the cop is damned with seven “Blood Curses” which burst through his leg periodically. When the seventh bursts, he will die, but Betsy, the beauty he saved stops the curse with an antidote that lasts only one year, so on the advice of Wisely (Chow yun Fat) … Read more

An Autumn’s Tale

A story about a New York Chinatown cab driver who falls for college student. The story of a naive young woman from Hong Kong who travels to New York to study is filmed in New York. In the big metropolis, her streetwise cabbie cousin looks after her.

Love Unto Wastes

Four young people spend their time living the wild life – until one of them is brutally murdered in a burglary. The survivors come under the scrutiny of an eccentric cop, and their underlying fears and regrets slowly but surely emerge.

Treasure Hunt

A C.I.A. agent is assigned to go to Beijing to look for a hidden “treasure,” which turns out to be a woman who has supernatural powers, and is the National Treasure of China.

Tiger on the Beat

A seasoned cop and his rookie partner are a pair of mismatched partners in this Hong Kong action-comedy in the style of ‘Lethal Weapon’. The wacky twosome are up in arms as they try to solve the murder of a heroin trafficker.

The Lunatics

A psychiatrist donates his time to help the mentally ill street people of Hong Kong. A reporter who hears about his activities accompanies him on his rounds.

The Greatest Lover

A delightful comedy about three illegal immigrants from China, one of whom (Chow) gets roped into a gentleman-training course – taught by Mui – in order to take revenge on some bitchy beauties who jilted a nasty fellow. Kinda like a gender-reversed My Fair Lady.

Witch from Nepal

A Hong Kong man goes on vacation to Nepal where a local tribe imbues him with magical powers which he must use to fight a growing evil.

The Monkey King: The Legend Begins

The Monkey King: The Legend Begins is the re-imagined version by Hollywood of the film The Monkey King: Havoc in Heavens Palace, the origin and birthplace of The Monkey King Story.

Peace Hotel

After his wife’s murder, widow Wong A Ping (Chow Yun-Fat) sets up a Peace Hotel to act as a sanctuary for anyone who needs protecting. One day a mysterious women (Cecilia Yip) shows up who seeks shelter from a gang hunting her. Vowing to never turn anyone away, Wong A Ping must decide whether to help the women or risk confronting the gang.

Full Contact

In an effort to get his buddy out of a gambling debt, Jeff agrees to join forces with Judge in a weapons heist. The job goes bad and Judge betrays Jeff. Jeff plots the ultimate revenge on Judge and his followers and it is a question of whether he can follow through with his plan.

Prison on Fire II

Ching is a prisoner in a Honk Kong jail that has a large population of Mainland Chinese prisoners. Ching escapes seeing his young son, who has been put in an orphanage. He surrenders himself to authorities, but the vengeful chief of security, Zau, arranges for Ching to be set up in the eyes of the Mainland gang, led by the affable Dragon. Dragon and Ching both then escape separately, and while fugitives, hook up together … Read more

Prison on Fire

Lo Ka Yiu, a young ad designer who is sentenced to jail for manslaughter, has gotten himself in trouble with the corrupted wardens and fellow inmates of Triad background. Chung Tin Ching, a veteran inmate and Yiu’s mentor, is forced to confront his comrade’s enemies time and again, leading up to the final showdown with the head of security.

Wild Search

While conducting a raid of an illegal arms deal, detective Mew Mew discovers the body of a dead woman and her daughter who witnessed the murder. Believing that the girl may be in danger, Mew Mew seeks out her aunt Cher, and the three develop a bond, but Cher’s ex-husband and a vengeful gunrunner soon show up to disrupt their short-lived peace.

From Vegas to Macau III

A gambler is targeted for murder during the wedding of his daughter to his protege. Rainbow, Ken’s daughter, is marrying his pupil, Vincent, at a wedding ceremony in Macau. Vic and Mark, two of Ken’s closest friends, have been invited to the wedding. Mark receives a phone call from Michael Chen on the day of the wedding, warning him that a mysterious tycoon has hired soldiers to assassinate Ken. The wedding is soon ruined, and … Read more

From Vegas to Macau II

Following his confrontation with the nefarious DOA organization, Ken (Chow Yun Fat) is looking forward to going back to enjoying his retirement. His rest is cut abruptly short when his protégé Vincent (Shawn Yue), who’s now working for Interpol, asks for Ken’s help in taking down the real mastermind behind DOA, Aoi. The two head to Thailand, where DOA’s former chief accountant Mark (Nick Cheung) has escaped with his daughter.

God of Gamblers’ Return

Chow returns to play Ko Chun, a skilled gambler who now lives in retirement in France. Wu Xingguo plays an evil gangster who forces Ko out of retirement by killing his pregnant wife. Ko is forced to team up with a variety of other people to win out in the end. Wu Chien-lien plays Chow’s romantic interest, Chingmy Yau plays a Taiwanese femme fatale, and Tony Leung provides much of the laughs.

God of Gamblers II

Wong Jing’s sequel to All for the Winner and spin-off to God of Gamblers finds Chow Sing Cho looking up to Michael “Dagger” Chan in order to become Ko Chun’s next disciple, but the two must put aside their differences when they discover that a gang boss is bent on ruining the God of Gamblers’ name.

The Romancing Star III

This third franchise installment carries on the wacky romantic spirit of cheese auteur Wong Jing’s earlier efforts, as four mismatched and contentious Hong Kong couples consider swapping partners but realize they’re happier as they are.

The Romancing Star

Ah Fat, foul-mouthed, along with his two close buddies, Traffic Light and Ugly, are working in a garage. Their boss, Ken, is harsh and stingy. However, a warm and close friendship has been established amongh the four. In order for Ah Fat to get over his heartbreak at getting dumped by his girlfriend, Ken suggests a tour to Penang to cheer him up. They come across two beautiful girls, Tung Tung and Man Chi, strolling … Read more

The Fun, the Luck & the Tycoon

Lam Bo Sun, the richest man in Hong Kong, is expected to marry the ditziest of socialites in a matter of weeks. On a whim, he leaves everything behind and gets a job as a lowly busboy at a noodle restaurant, and finds the girl of his dreams.

The Eighth Happiness

Three oddball brothers go looking for love but unfortunately, their out-there personalities get in the way!

The Diary of a Big Man

A two-timing bigamist finds himself concocting scheme after scheme with his best friend, Chi Hung, to prevent either of his wives from discovering his bigamy. The unwanted intervention of a police officer as well as a series of unfortunate events lead to the wives discovery of the whole plot. They team up with Chi Hung’s exasperated fiancée, Ka Lai, to exact revenge upon the two men.

The Story of Woo Viet

Wu Viet is a Vietnamese refugee who wants to leave his country behind and start over in the United States. First, he must make his way to Hong Kong, but as he passes through Thailand, he meets a beautiful woman who travels with him. Wu and his new love end up in a refugee camp in Thailand, where they discover many of their countrymen are disappearing under mysterious circumstances. As Wu tries to learn the … Read more

Once a Thief

Three art thieves try to re-steal a painting after their crime boss double-crosses them.

All About Ah-Long

Chow Yun-fat plays Ah-Long, a father living a low-class lifestyle, while trying to raise his son, Porky (Wong Kwan Yuen). The strong bond between father and son is tested when a chance encounter from Ah-Long’s ex-girlfriend (Sylvia Chang) changes the course of their lives.

Love in a Fallen City

Taking place in 1941, Love in a Fallen City centers on Pai (Cora Miao), a young woman who has been ostracized by her family for divorcing her rich husband. A local match-maker, Mrs. Hsu (Helen Ma), takes pity on Pai and decides to bring her to Hong Kong, under the guise of employing her as the Hsu’s nanny, but in reality to introduce her to Fan (Chow Yun-Fat). Pai and Fan seem to hit it … Read more

City on Fire

Ko Chow is an undercover cop who is under pressure from all sides. His boss, Inspector Lau, wants him to infiltrate a gang of ruthless jewel thieves; in order to do this he must obtain some handguns; his girlfriend wants him to commit to marriage or she will leave Hong Kong with another lover; and he is being pursued by other cops who are unaware that he is a colleague.What is more Chow would rather … Read more

Project Gutenberg

The Hong Kong police is hunting a counterfeiting gang led by a mastermind code-named “Painter” . The gang possesses exceptional counterfeiting skills which makes it difficult to distinguish the authenticity of its counterfeit currency. The scope of their criminal activities extends globally and greatly attracts the attention of the police. In order to crack the true identity of “Painter”, the police recruits a painter named Lee Man to assist in solving the case.

The Monkey King

Sun Wukong, (The Monkey King) is a monkey born from a heavenly stone who acquires supernatural powers. After rebelling against heaven and being imprisoned under a mountain for 500 years, he later accompanies the monk Xuanzang on a journey to India. Thus, according to legend, Buddhism is brought to ancient China. This much beloved story, is as much a part of Asian culture as The Iliad and The Odyssey or The Wizard of Oz are … Read more

A Better Tomorrow II

A restaurant owner his ex-con brother and a policeman team up to avenge the murder of his old friends daughter by the Triad.

A Better Tomorrow III: Love and Death in Saigon

The year is 1974. A young Hong Kong Chinese, Mark (Chow Yun-Fat), travels to Saigon to make his fortune. There, he encounters a mysterious femme fatale, the lovely Kit. As he becomes more involved in her various underworld deals, a tragic romance develops. On the eve of the outbreak of war, Kit’s past returns to endanger her, and Mark must risk everything for the one true love of his life…

From Vegas to Macau

The world renowned “Invincible Hand” Ken could identify not only mahjong tiles, but also cards with his fingers which had made him a legend. Upon his retirement as the Chief Security Consultant in Las Vegas, Ken returned to his hometown Macau, where he met his old friend Benz, and Benz’s son Cool and nephew Karl. Both Cool and Karl wanted to follow Ken. Ken claimed that if Cool could successfully cheat him once or win … Read more

A Better Tomorrow

A reforming ex-gangster tries to reconcile with his estranged policeman brother, but the ties to his former gang are difficult to break.

The Killer

Hong Kong’s preeminent director John Woo transforms genres from both the East and the West to create this explosive and masterful action film. Featuring Hong Kong’s greatest star, Chow Yun-fat, as a killer with a conscience, the film is an exquisite dissection of morals in a corrupt society, highlighted with slow-motion sequences of brilliantly choreographed gun battles on the streets of Hong Kong.

Hard Boiled

A take-no-prisoners cop is on the trail of the triads when his partner is killed during a gun battle. His guilt propels him into an all-out war against the gang, including an up-and-coming soldier in the mob who turns out to be an undercover cop. The two men must come to terms with their allegiance to the force and their loyalty to each other as they try to take down the gangsters.

Cold War II

Picking up some time after the events in the first movie, Sean Lau is now the Commissioner of Police after the successful rescue operation. However, things turn bad when his wife and daughter are kidnapped. Sean has to seek help from former rival and retired DCP, Waise Lee, to return to his job to help save Sean`s wife and child.