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Biao Yuen Poster

Biography

Jump to: Overview (4) | Mini Bio (1) | Spouse (1) | Trivia (7) | Personal Quotes (3)

Overview (4)

Born in Hong Kong
Birth NameHsia Ling-Jun
Nickname Little Brother
Height 5' 6¼" (1.68 m)

Mini Bio (1)

Yuen Biao is regarded as one of the most acrobatic martial artists ever. Unfortunately, he is still underrated and not as popular as other contemporaries such as Jackie Chan, Sammo Kam-Bo Hung, and Jet Li even though he is the most critically acclaimed out of all of them and the most talented as well. And now he is receiving a cult following due to word of mouth. Born of his parents Ha Kwong-Tai (father) and Ha Sau-Ying. Yuen Biao was first enrolled in the China Drama Academy at the age of 5 (he was the youngest there). He met Sammo Kam-Bo Hung and Jackie Chan while attending the Academy. Jackie Chan took him under his wing, and they became lifelong friends. Yuen Biao stayed at the Academy until the age of 16 where he moved with Master Jim-Yuen to America. However, two years later he came back, citing there were no opportunities for Chinese martial artists to star in American films. After being in some bit part roles in films such as Stoner (1974) (aka Stoner), Shao Lin men (1976) (aka Hand of Death), he didn't receive his first major breakthrough role until Sammo Kam-Bo Hung cast him in Za jia xiao zi (1979) (aka Knockabout). However, his first role which gave him full exposure and established his status as a A-list star was Bai ga jai (1981) (aka The Prodigal Son), which also starred and was directed by Sammo Kam-Bo Hung. After that, 'Jackie Chan' cast him in the classic Project A (1983) (aka Project A). After starring in some other films with Sammo Kam-Bo Hung and/or Jackie Chan, he decided to go his own way and to forge his own career to get out of the shadows of Jackie Chan and Sammo Kam-Bo Hung. He met his future wife DiDi Phang Sau-Ha in 1984 while working as a stunt coordinator on the film DiDi Phang was working on: Tai fong siu sau (1982) (aka Carry On Pickpocket). They have two children. His daughter Yi-Bui was born in 1986 and his son Ming-Tsak in 1988. The film Mong ming yuen yeung (1988) (aka On The Run) confirmed his abilities as a brilliant actor as his portrayal as a married man seeking vengeance for his wife's brutal murder was critically acclaimed. The following year he starred in probably his best film, Ji dong qi xia (1989) (aka The Iceman Cometh), in which he starred with acclaimed actress Maggie Cheung. The film is regarded as a cult classic and is remembered not only for the fantastic fighting scenes and hilarious comedy, but also the wonderful acting of Biao Yuen and Maggie Cheung and the wonderful simmering sexual chemistry between them. After starring in the acclaimed Wong Fei Hung (1991) (aka Once Upon a Time in China, in which most of his scenes were cut), he directed his first movie (Xi Zang xiao zi (1992). aka A Kid From Tibet), in which he also starred. In 1994, he worked for the first time in years, with Sammo Kam-Bo Hung in the gloriously titled Mou mian bei (1995) (aka Don't Give a Damn). In recent years, Yuen Biao has complained of poor scripts, so he appears in films sparsely nowadays. He also has a second home in Canada where he spends most of time pursuing his hobby of golf.

- IMDb Mini Biography By: Rehan Yousuf <rehanyousuf15@hotmail.com>

Spouse (1)

DiDi Phang Sau-Ha (1984 - present) (2 children)

Trivia (7)

Longtime friend of Jackie Chan (Rush Hour (1998)) and Sammo Kam-Bo Hung (Martial Law (1998)).
Attended Peking Opera school, run by Yu Jim Yuen who moved to Hong Kong from Mainland China. By the time Yuen Biao, Jackie Chan, and Sammo Hung graduated, Peking Opera performances were declining in popularity (a fictionalized account is told in Painted Faces 1988, starring Sammo Hung as their infamously strict teacher Yu Jim Yuen.) These graduates skilled in Peking Opera and martial arts then entered film business to apply their life-long skills, transforming the waning swordplay and (old school) kung fu genres in 1970s-1980s, and inventing the now classic, multi-genre modern action of 1980s.
"Yuen" is the surname of his Peking Opera school teacher, Yu Jim Yuen. Many school graduates take the name as their stage name, in honor of their teacher. "Biao" means a youthful tiger in its prime.
Biao has worn spectacles since adolescence. Although in most movies he does not not wear spectacles he can be seen wearing his own pairs in Wheels on Meals (19834), Mr Vampire 2 (1986), and Hunted Hunter (1997).
Introduced nephew Edmond Fung Yuen-Man to film production. Fung has now directed Futago (2005).
Is one of the rare HK performers who have a more loyal following in Japan than in his native Hong Kong. Thus the many Japan/HK co-productions in his work (The Setting Sun 1992, Bakayaro! 1991, No Problem 2 2002.) For the Kung Fu-soccer comedy The Champions (1983), he was promoted as a wholesome, super-athlete version of Japan's pop idol culture. As the norm for idols in Japan, Yuen released several music albums despite his rudimentary grasp on Japanese and pop music. Documented as recently as 2004, Yuen still makes the occasional personalized replies to his Japanese fans.
Yuen Biao did not portray The Pickpocket, aka Little Frog, in Master with Cracked Hands (Snake Fist Fighter). The role was actually played by Hon Kwok Choi.

Personal Quotes (3)

"By the time we came out to work in Hong Kong film industry, we realized that our teacher had taught us useful things, since we didn't go to normal schools. We studied opera so we entered the entertainment industry. If there wasn't a film industry, we would have been lost. We were lucky that in Hong Kong, people liked this kind of film, and there were people who could perform it to represent Hong Kong. This became the mainstream film. Then eventually, Hong Kong became renowned for it." - from Project A DVD interview.
"We'd known about Bruce Lee ever since we were children. Regarding what he could do, he did deserve people's admiration. On film, his kung fu was magnificent, but as far as filming technique is concerned, those old films were not that sophisticated. They were one-man shows. If he hadn't been so great, there would have been nothing to see. [Jackie Chan, Sammo Hung and I] had all done "Enter the Dragon" together with Lam Ching-Ying. Bruce Lee liked our group, the stunt-men, very much. After he died, action films declined for a while. Then Sammo Hung and [the rest of] us emerged. We made action films together, with Sammo Hung as leader." - from Project A DVD interview.
"Kung fu talent is abundant in China. But is there an experienced person who can mold this potential to make films, action films? Like Sammo Hung or Jackie Chan, who have the desire for action films, and able to teach them? I don't think there ever will be." - from Project A DVD interview.

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