Hong Kong media outlets reported the director, who was born Lin Lingdong, was found unresponsive in bed on Saturday by his wife. He was 63.
The 1986 “City on Fire” is considered a landmark film about Hong Kong triads, and won best director at the Hong Kong Film Awards. It was a major influence on Quentin Tarantino’s “Reservoir Dogs.” Lam followed that film up with “Prison on Fire” and “School on Fire.”
“Tarantino has never tried to hide his love for ’70s cinema, and this is part of what makes his take on ‘City on Fire’ so interesting,” wrote IndieWire in an explanation of Tarantino’s influences.
With several “Reservoir Dogs” shots recalling “City on Fire,” such as the image of four men in black suits and a man shooting a cop with with two guns,