Chow, Stephen

Chow, Stephen
(né Chow Sing Chi/Zhou Xingchi)
b. 22 June 1962, Hong Kong
Film actor, scriptwriter, director, producer
Often compared to Jim Carrey, the Hong Kong born, Shanghai native Stephen Chow embodies wulitou (mo lei tau in Cantonese, meaning ‘non-sensical humour’) acting, infused with Bruce Lee spirit. His 2001 comeback comedy Kung-fu Soccer, a.k.a. Shaolin Soccer (Shaolin zuqiu), shot on the mainland, which Chow wrote, directed and acted (with Zhao Wei), surpassed all box-office hits (grossing HK$67.26 million) in Hong Kong. Cashing in on the film’s popularity, Chow, along with the film’s other actors, did a special celebrity edition of Who Wants to be a Millionaire? as a philanthropic fund-raising project. The film’s copyright was bought by Miramax and was scheduled for release in the USA in 2003.
Chow attended TVB’s acting school in Hong Kong, and entered showbiz by hosting the children’s show with Tony Leung. He won the 1988 Best Supporting Actor Golden Horse Award (Jinma jiang) for his performance in Final Justice (Pili xianfeng). He played his first leading role in the 1990 box-office hit All for the Winner (Du Xia 2), which parodies Chow Yun-fat’s 1989 God of Gamblers (Dushen) and introduced wu li tou acting to Hong Kong audiences. During the 1990s his popularity increased, with no fewer than forty-four films which he acted in and occasionally wrote and directed. The best-known of these are: Justice, My Foot (Shen si guan), which won him the Best Actor Award at the 1992 Pacific Film Festival; From Beijing with Love (Guochan linglingqi, 1994), a parody of James Bond movies; and Gorgeous (Boli zun, 1999), a Jackie Chan movie in which Chow made a guest appearance. [a profile of the life and career of Stephen Chow]

Encyclopedia of contemporary Chinese culture. . 2011.

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