IMDb > Detective Dee: The Mystery of the Phantom Flame (2010)
Di renjie: Tong tian di guo
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Detective Dee: The Mystery of the Phantom Flame (2010) More at IMDbPro »Di renjie: Tong tian di guo (original title)

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Detective Dee: The Mystery of the Phantom Flame -- An exiled detective is recruited to solve a series of mysterious deaths that threaten to delay the inauguration of Empress Wu.


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6.6/10   8,911 votes »
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View company contact information for Detective Dee: The Mystery of the Phantom Flame on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
30 September 2010 (China) See more »
An exiled detective is recruited to solve a series of mysterious deaths that threaten to delay the inauguration of Empress Wu. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
7 wins & 16 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
A Solid Story With Gorgeous Cinematography From Tsui Hark See more (40 total) »


  (in credits order)

Tony Ka Fai Leung ... Shatuo Zhong

Chao Deng ... Pei Donglai

Carina Lau ... Empress Wu Zetian

Bingbing Li ... Shangguan Jing'er (as Li Bing Bing)

Andy Lau ... Detective Dee
Jean-Michel Casanova ... General Aspar (as Michel)
Sos Haroyan ... Assistant to Umayyad Ambassador

Jialin Zhao ... Interpreter

Yan Qin ... Jia Yi
Jinshan Liu ... Xue Yong
Aaron C. Shang ... Shaizi (as Aaron Shang)
Deshun Wang ... Xiazi Ling

Mickey He ... Prison Officer (as Shenming He)
Lu Yao ... Li Xiao

Yanming Jiang ... Undertaker
Yonggang Huang ... Zhang Xun

Richard Ng ... Wang Lu - before face-lift

Teddy Robin Kwan ... Wang Lu - after face-lift (as Teddy Robin)

Xiao Chen ... Lu Li

Veronica Faye Foo ... Wife of Jia Yi (as Liz Veronica Foo)
Nan Xu ... Chamberlain
Jin Chai ... Qiu Shenji
Yingxin Shen
Qian Jiang
Chia-lu Chang (as Jialu Zhang)
Hongjun Cheng
Xuehai Jiao
Ming Lu

Jinghui Jia (as Jinhu Jia)
Zhengbing Yuan

Directed by
Hark Tsui 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Chia-lu Chang  screenplay (as Jialu Zhang)
Kuo-Fu Chen 
Lin Qianyu  original story

Produced by
Felice Bee .... co-producer
Peggy Lee .... producer
Nansun Shi .... producer
Hark Tsui .... producer
Original Music by
Peter Kam 
Cinematography by
Chi-Ying Chan (director of photography)
Chor Keung Chan (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Chi Wai Yau 
Production Design by
Sung Pong Choo 
Art Direction by
Sung Pong Choo  (as James Chiu Sung-Bong)
Chi-Pang Chung  (as Chi Pang Terrance Chung)
Zhen Wu 
Costume Design by
Bruce Yu 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Hsun-Wei David Chang .... assistant director
Art Department
Tak Fu Chou .... set designer
Yu Hang Tsang .... assistant art director
Sound Department
Danrong Wang .... sound
Gang Wang .... sound
Nan Zhao .... supervising sound editor
Ying Zhao .... re-recording mixer
Ying Zhao .... sound effects editor
Visual Effects by
Dongho Han .... fx supervisor & Lead fx
Yanming Jiang .... visual effects supervisor
Phil Jones .... visual effects supervisor
Chang-bae Kang .... visual effects
Dongsoo Kim .... compositing supervisor: AZworks
Janghyung Kim .... senior effects technical director
Mirang Kim .... lighting td
Jinny Ko .... effects technical director: AZworks
Hyukil Kwon .... matte painter
Yong-gi Lee .... visual effects
Sang-woo Nam .... visual effects
Sammo Kam-Bo Hung .... action director
Chi Kit Lee .... assistant stunt coordinator
Camera and Electrical Department
Saeed Adyani .... still photographer
Benjamin Childs .... still photographer
Marc Ehrenbold .... camera operator
Wai-Chuen Wong .... gaffer
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Man Kit Chow .... costume assistant
Editorial Department
Gérard Estival .... color timer: not credited
Hideyuki Mako .... post production supervisor
Music Department
Kin-wai Wong .... composer: additional music
Stego Zhang .... special thanks

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Di renjie: Tong tian di guo" - China (original title)
"Detective D" - Singapore (English title) (short title)
See more »
Rated PG-13 for violence, disturbing images and some sexuality.
USA:119 min | UK:123 min
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

The stunt team built eight platforms (12 meters tall) in the cave for three days of wire work. The record was over 70 wires for one scene.See more »
Continuity: When the Crown Prince is killed by an arrow piercing his forehead, he has just won a board game similar to Go, except with blue & orange jewels instead of the traditional smooth stones. He starts picking up his pieces, then slams them down again shortly before he is shot. But as he crashes down onto the large board, a neat space has suddenly been cleared for the actor's head to impact safely - or possibly this was the result of a previous take.See more »
Detective Dee:Ruling requires power and strategy, but right and wrong cannot be confused.See more »
Movie Connections:


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12 out of 13 people found the following review useful.
A Solid Story With Gorgeous Cinematography From Tsui Hark, 24 June 2011
Author: jimhiggins63 from New York City

This is a visually sumptuous and stunning-looking film by Tsui Hark who has directed or produced some of the classic Hong action films of the last 25 years. The Hark films I've seen, which often have great fight sequences, are hit and miss in terms of the cohesiveness of the stories, though when they work the films can be fabulous (Peking Opera Blues, the Once Upon A Time In China, series, etc.)

This period film has an interesting mystery at its heart with lots of red herrings and twists. The story follows Detective Dee as he's brought out of his political imprisonment to investigate a series of murders during the lead-up to the coronation of the first female Emperor. There some plot inconsistencies and problems, but they're small. The lead actors are all very good, including Andy Lau, Bingbing Li, Carina Lau, and Chao Deng. All in all, it's a compelling film not overloaded with action-for-the-sake-of-action that looks at an interesting period in China's history.

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