Five Tiger Generals of TVB

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Five Tiger Generals
Fivetigers.jpg
Five Tiger Generals, 1983.
Top (L-R): Lau, Wong
Bottom (L-R): Miu, Leung, Tong
Background information
Also known as Five Tigers
Origin Hong Kong
Years active 1980s
Associated acts TVB
Members Michael Miu
Kent Tong
Felix Wong
Andy Lau
Tony Leung
Five Tiger Generals of TVB
Traditional Chinese 無綫五虎將
Simplified Chinese 无线五虎将
Literal meaning Wireless Five Tiger Generals

The Five Tiger Generals of TVB (無綫五虎將), more commonly referred to as simply the Five Tigers (五虎), were a group of five of the most popular young male actors of 1980s Hong Kong television. The group consisted of Michael Miu ("Big Tiger"), Kent Tong ("Second Tiger"), Felix Wong ("Third Tiger"), Andy Lau ("Fourth Tiger"), and Tony Leung Chiu-Wai ("Small Tiger"). The group was formed to collectively promote the popularity of the five members, as well as to promote the company's various drama and entertainment productions. Five Tiger Generals was a name given to them by the media. The term is a popular appellation in Chinese culture, meaning a ruler's five best military generals.

Background[edit]

While all five members were once trainees of TVB's then all-year Artiste Training Academy, they joined the school at different times—Kent Tong joined in 1978; Michael Miu and Felix Wong in 1979; Andy Lau in 1980, and Tony Leung in 1981. Tong was the first to debut with his first role as the supporting character Wu Wang-yuen in the 1980 drama This Land is Mine. Wong's first role was in the 1981 The Misadventure of Zoo. The other three members had debut roles while they were still trainees at the school: Miu's debut role was the 1980 drama The Adventurer's; Lau's first role was in the sitcom Hong Kong '81and Leung had his first major role in the 1982 Soldier of Fortune, which also starred Wong and Tong.

It did not take long for the Five Tigers to become popular. According to Wong during a 2009 interview for the talk show Be My Guest, TVB's first generation of leading actors at the time, which included Adam Cheng and Chow Yun-fat, were leaving the company, and TVB was in need to round up a new generation of popular idols, thus the members of the Five Tigers quickly rose to fame due to many performing opportunities. Wong said that as soon as he graduated from acting class, he was offered a major supporting role.[1] Wong was offered a leading role in his second drama, The Lonely Hunter (1981), which shot him to instant fame in Hong Kong.

Formation[edit]

In September 1983, amidst a ratings competition with Korean and Japanese variety shows, TVB created the show All Star Challenge, which featured almost an entire lineup of the most popular actors and singers of Hong Kong at the time. The five most popular young male idols at the station—Miu, Tong, Wong, Lau, and Leung—were grouped together to perform a variety of stage performances at the show, such as singing and dancing. Their appearances brought in a lot of media attention, and their performances were a selling point for the show.[2] The media then branded them as TVB's Five Tiger Generals, and the term quickly caught on to the public. Since their formation, the five of them consistently made public appearances together as a group; they even expressed that they would like to release an album together under their name.

Legacy and reunion[edit]

The popularity of the Five Tigers led TVB to continue with similar group projects even after the members of the Five Tigers left TVB. However, none of them were that successful. Many television dramas that featured the members of the Five Tigers, notably The Legend of the Condor Heroes (1983), The Return of the Condor Heroes (1983), Police Cadet (1984), The Duke of Mount Deer (1984), and Looking Back in Anger (1989), were branded as classics by many in Asia.

On 27 June 2010, during a press conference for a training academy in Panyu, Guangzhou, Tong revealed that the five members are planning for another reunion project. The collaboration between Miu and Wong in the 2010 drama Gun Metal Grey created a heated discussion about a possible reunion of all members in the future. "The Five Tiger Generals will definitely reunite again. The five of us really hope for that day to come; in fact, we are currently planning one right now."[3]

Collaborations[edit]

Film
Year Film Miu Tong Wong Lau Leung Notes
1982 Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils NoN NoN
Once Upon a Rainbow NoN NoN
1983 Mad, Mad 83 NoN NoN NoN
1985 Twinkle, Twinkle Lucky Stars NoN NoN
1986 Lucky Stars Go Places NoN NoN
1987 Eastern Condors NoN NoN
1988 The Dragon Family NoN NoN NoN
Lai Shi, China's Last Eunuch NoN NoN
The Crazy Companies II NoN NoN
1989 Little Cop NoN NoN
City Cops NoN NoN
Proud and Confident NoN NoN
News Attack NoN NoN
1990 The Fortune Code NoN NoN
Days of Being Wild NoN NoN
1991 Don't Fool Me NoN NoN
The Tigers NoN NoN NoN NoN NoN Nominated—Hong Kong Film Award for Best Supporting Actor (Tong)
The Banquet NoN NoN
1992 Handsome Siblings NoN NoN
The Days of Being Dumb NoN NoN
1993 Hero - Beyond The Boundary Of Time NoN NoN
Lord of East China Sea NoN NoN
Lord of East China Sea II NoN NoN
Come Fly the Dragon NoN NoN NoN
1994 Drunken Master II NoN NoN
2002 Infernal Affairs NoN NoN Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actor (Leung)
Golden Horse Awards for Best Actor (Leung)
Golden Bauhinia Awards for Best Actor (Leung)
Hong Kong Film Award for Best Original Film Song (Lau with Leung)
Nominated—Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actor (Lau)
Nominated—Golden Horse Awards for Best Actor (Lau)
Golden Chicken NoN NoN
2003 Infernal Affairs III NoN NoN Golden Horse Awards for Best Actor (Lau)
Golden Chicken 2 NoN NoN
2004 Jiang Hu NoN NoN
Love Is a Many Stupid Thing NoN NoN
2006 My Mother Is a Belly Dancer NoN NoN
2005 Wait 'til You're Older NoN NoN Nominated—Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actor (Lau)
2007 Brothers NoN NoN NoN NoN Nominated—Hong Kong Film Award for Best Original Film Song (Lau with Eason Chan)
2011 I Love Hong Kong NoN NoN
2013 7 Assassins NoN NoN
Television dramas
Year Title Miu Tong Wong Lau Leung Notes
1981 The Adventurer's NoN NoN
Double Fantasies NoN NoN
Come Rain, Come Shine NoN NoN NoN
The Lonely Hunter NoN NoN
The Young Heroes of Shaolin NoN NoN NoN
1982 A Kid Troupe NoN NoN
Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils NoN NoN
The Legend of Master So NoN NoN
The Wild Bunch NoN NoN
Soldier of Fortune NoN NoN NoN
The Emissary NoN NoN
1983 The Legend of the Condor Heroes NoN NoN
The Return of the Condor Heroes NoN NoN
1984 The Duke of Mount Deer NoN NoN
The Foundation NoN NoN NoN
Rise And Fall Of A Stand-in NoN NoN
The Return of Wong Fei Hung NoN NoN
Summer Kisses, Winter Tears NoN NoN
1985 Sword Stained with Royal Blood NoN NoN
Tough Fight NoN NoN
The Yang's Saga NoN NoN NoN NoN NoN
1987 The Grand Canal NoN NoN
Two Most Honorable Knights NoN NoN
2010 Gun Metal Grey NoN NoN Nominated—TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actor (Top 15) (Miu)
Nominated—TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actor (Top 5) (Wong)

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Be My Guest: Episode 133". TVB (in Chinese). 2009-07-25. 
  2. ^ "Chapter 2: Television Stars, TVB's Five Tiger Generals". Big5.china.com (in Chinese). Retrieved 2010-09-25. 
  3. ^ "Kent Tong to film comeback: Five Tiger Generals will definitely reunite". 163 (in Chinese). 2010-06-27. Retrieved 2010-10-09. 

External links[edit]