Stanley Tong (Chinese: 唐季禮; pinyin: Táng Jìlǐ) is a Hong Kong film director, producer, action choreographer, screenwriter, entrepreneur and philanthropist. Encouraged by his brother-in-law in Hong Kong, who was a filmmaker, Tong started his film career there in 1979 by working behind the scenes. In 1991, Tong directed his first film, the self-funded The Stone Age Warriors(魔域飞龙). The film received high praises from some famous film critics, which attracted the attention of Golden Harvest. Tong was then invited to join the company as a film director.
Tong is very well known for his action movies. Working closely with Jackie Chan, Stanley directed some very popular movies in 1990s. Their first collaboration, Police Story 3: Super Cop (警察故事3：超级警察) (1992), broke box office records in many Asian countries and received a nomination for Best Film at the Golden Horse Awards. Tong’s other movies with Jackie Chan, such as Rumble in the Bronx(红番区)(1995) and Police Story 4: First Strike(警察故事4：简单任务) (1996), also created significant box office records, the latter grossing HK$57,518,795, the highest box office return for a local film in Hong Kong until 2001. Also, the release of Rumble in the Bronx in the United States helped Jackie Chan make a name for himself in Hollywood.
Tong customarily attempts stunts himself before asking actors to risk themselves, e.g., Jackie Chan’s leap from a parking garage roof to a fire escape in Rumble in the Bronx and the finale of The Stone Age Warriors.
During his stay in Hollywood, Tong also filmed Mr. Magoo (1997), which was a critical and commercial failure, and Martial Law (1998), which was a moderate ratings success.
In 2000, Tong returned to Shanghai, in hopes to inspire the future generation of filmmakers in China. After his long presence away from home, Tong directed his first film in his homeland, China Strike Force (雷霆战警). In 2005, Tong wrote and directed the film The Myth (神话). In the same year, Tong also wrote and directed Asia’s first computer-animated film, Dragon Blood.
In recent years, Tong has produced a number of films, including the films The Myth (2010) and CZ12 (十二生肖)(2012), as well as the TV series Fall in Love with You (偏偏爱上你)(2012) and The Patriot Yue Fei (精忠岳飞)(2013).
Apart from filmmaking, Tong has been active with charity work both in USA and China. He also works as a guest lecturer in China to help cultivate the nation’s future filmmakers.