Jack Neo

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PBM Jack Neo
Jack Neo January 2013 (cropped).jpg
Jack Neo
Background information
Chinese name 梁志強 (traditional)
Chinese name 梁智强 (simplified)
Pinyin Liáng Zhìqiáng (Mandarin)
Born Jack Neo Chee Keong (Niû Tì-Kiông)
(1960-01-24) 24 January 1960 (age 58)
Origin Singapore
Occupation Film director, actor, host
Spouse(s) Irene Kng
Children 4
Ancestry Chinese (Hoklo)

Jack Neo (born 24 January 1960), is a Singaporean film and television actor, host and director. He was prominently a full-time Mediacorp artiste from 1983 to 2003. He is best known for his cross-dressing roles, as Liang Po Po (literally: Granny Liang) and Liang Xi Mei in the long-running television comedy show Comedy Nite.

Career[edit]

Neo wrote and acted in a comedy skit for Tanjong Katong Secondary School at the age of 14.[1][2][3]

Neo started his career on television in 1980 and became one of the most successful and recognisable celebrities in Mediacorp for his comedic roles on both film and television. His two most notable cross-dressing roles on film and television are Liang Po Po and Liang Xi Mei, both skits in the long-running comedy variety show Comedy Nite. Neo made his directorial debut in That One Not Enough (1999) and he set up his own artiste management company, J Team Productions, whose members include comedians Mark Lee, Henry Thia and John Cheng.

Neo's films satirise several aspects about Singapore in comical ways, including societal issues such as negligent parenting and school corporal punishment, and foreign issues such as the water disputes between Singapore and Malaysia. Apart from his film and TV career, Neo has also recorded and produced a number of albums.

Neo received the Best Director Award at the Silver Screen Awards in 1998 for his short film and was also awarded with the Lifetime Achievement Award in the following year in recognition of his contributions to Singapore's media industry. Since then, he became a filmmaker and created his first film, Money No Enough, directed by Tay Teck Lock and released into cinemas on 7 May 1998. In 2004, Neo became the first filmmaker in Singapore to be honoured with the Public Service Award. He also received the Cultural Medallion on 21 October 2005 together with musician Dick Lee.[4]

In 2008, Neo and Mark Lee bought the Singapore master franchise rights for Old Town White Coffee, a coffee retail concept from Ipoh, Malaysia. Their first store at Big Splash opened on 30 March in that year.

In 2013, Neo announced the creation of J Team Academy, an educational institute which aimed to bring together industry experts to groom new film-making talent. The academy opened on 6 April 2013.[5] In September, Neo won the Best Actor award for his role in Homecoming (2011) at the 1st Golden Wau Awards, aimed at promoting Chinese-language Malaysian films.[6]

In October 2014, the Madame Tussauds Singapore museum unveiled a wax figure of Neo. The statue depicts Neo dressed in a denim shirt with rolled-up sleeves giving two thumbs up - a pose he has struck previously in several media interviews.[7]

2015 saw the release of Neo's short film as part of the omnibus 7 Letters to commemorate Singapore's 50th year of independence.[8] Malaysian censors took offence with Neo's segment when it was submitted to them for a screening at Kuala Lumpur's Titian Budaya Festival. They initially requested a cut to the vulgar phrase in Cantonese, “curse your whole family”, but a successful appeal was made by organisers, CultureLink.[9]

Neo released the first two parts of his planned four-part film on the transition from village life to government housing in the first quarter of 2016, Long Long Time Ago and Long Long Time Ago 2.[10]

Personal life[edit]

Extramarital affair and allegations of sexual harassment[edit]

In March 2010, a two-year-long extramarital affair between Neo and freelance model Wendy Chong was publicised and Neo admitted to the affair. Chong, who played a minor role in Neo's 2008 film Money No Enough 2, claimed that Neo initiated the affair. Neo later attempted to end the affair but Chong threatened to hurt herself and the exposé caused much debate and discussion amongst the entertainment circle of Singapore.[11]

On 9 March 2010, additional reports were released about Neo having or attempting extramarital affairs with up to 11 women.[12] He tried to ask actress-host Foyce Le Xuan and 16-year old French student Maelle Meurzec for sexual favours when they were working for him.[13][14] Foyce Le Xuan, who went to the same church as Neo, claimed that she was advised by her City Harvest Church pastor to cease talking to the media, as Neo's pastor was trying to counsel him and his wife after his affair became public.[15][16][17] On 11 March, Neo and Kng held a five-minute press conference, in which Neo admitted his mistake and asked the media to let him off.[18] After that, Kng reiterated her love for Neo and also requested for the media to spare her.[18]

Subsequently, his endorsement deal with Mitsubishi Electric Asia was dropped and TV advertisements featuring the director were taken off air. Other advertisers, such as Bee Cheng Hiang and Goh Joo Hin, initially adopted a "wait-and-see" attitude, but otherwise similarly dropped all endorsement deals.[19]

Filmography[edit]

Year Title Role Notes
1997 12 Storeys Ah Gu Actor
1998 Money No Enough Chew Wah Keong Writer, Actor
1999 That One Not Enough Hong Haoren Writer, Director, Actor
Liang Po Po: The Movie Liang Po Po/Liang Xi Mei Writer, Actor
2001 The Snow Are Activities Party Assistant Cameo, Director
2002 I Not Stupid Mr Liu Writer, Director, Actor
2003 Homerun Beng Soon's father Writer, Director, Cameo
2004 The Best Bet Writer, Director
2005 I Do I Do Member of Parliament Neo Writer, Director, Cameo
One More Chance Reporter Writer, Director, Cameo
2006 I Not Stupid Too Mr Yeo (Steven) Writer, Director, Actor
The Snow Are Activities II Cameo, Director
2007 Just Follow Law Doctor Writer, Director, Narrator, Cameo
2008 Ah Long Pte Ltd Composer Writer, Director, Cameo
Money No Enough 2 Yang Baoqiang Writer, Director, Actor
2009 Love Matters Writer, Director
Where Got Ghost? Yang Baoqiang Writer, Director, Actor
2010 Being Human Waiter Writer, Director, Cameo
The Snow Are Activities III Cameo, Director
2011 The Ghosts Must Be Crazy Executive Producer, Writer
Homecoming Karen Neo Actor
2012 We Not Naughty Writer, Director
Ah Boys to Men Writer, Director
2013 Ah Boys to Men 2 Writer, Director
Everybody's Business Executive Producer
2014 The Lion Men Writer, Director
The Lion Men: Ultimate Showdown Writer, Director
2015 Ah Boys to Men 3: Frogmen Writer, Director
My Papa Rich Pokok Lim Actor
7 Letters - Segment "That Girl" Writer, Director
2016 Long Long Time Ago[20] Writer, Director
Long Long Time Ago 2 Writer, Director
2017 Take 2 Executive Producer
The Fortune Handbook Executive Producer
Lucky Boy Executive Producer
Ah Boys to Men 4 Writer, Director
The Snow Are Activities IV Cameo, Director
2018 Wonderful! Liang Xi Mei Liang Xi Mei/Liang Po Po Writer, Director, Actor
Killer Not Stupid 杀手不笨 Writer, Director

Variety shows[edit]

Year Show Role Notes
2017 Happy Can Already! 3
欢喜就好 3
Liang Ximei 梁细妹 Dialect Variety series
Happy Can Already! 2
欢喜就好 2
Liang Ximei 梁细妹 Dialect Variety series
2016 Happy Can Already!
欢喜就好
Liang Ximei 梁细妹 Dialect Variety series
Tv series 

Comedy Night/Comedy Nite/“live” series 搞笑行动系列

Liang Ximei S1 & S2 再见梁细妹 S1&S2

The Return Of Liang Ximei 笑傲江湖梁细妹

The Return Of Liang Popo 梁婆婆冲出江湖

Hero 大英雄 Liang Po Po 梁婆婆 Cameo 客串

Discography[edit]

Drama Soundtracks[edit]

Year Drama Title Song Title Notes
2014 118 夠力夠力
  • Opening Theme Song
2018 Say Cheese 喜剧收场
  • Opening Theme Song
Namewee 黄明志 Comedy Action 搞笑行动 concert and music video 演唱会和mv

Awards[edit]

Year Ceremony Award Nominated work Result
1997 3rd Star Awards Ceremony Special Achievement Award N/A Won
1998 4th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 10
1999 5th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 10
2000 6th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 10
2001 7th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 10
2002 8th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 10
2003 9th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 10
2016 22nd Star Awards Ceremony Best Theme Song 118 Nominated
2018 24th Star Awards Ceremony Top 10 Most Popular Male Artistes N/A Top 20

References[edit]

  1. ^ Walsh, Bryan (1 April 2002). "Neo is the One". TIME Asia magazine. Archived from the original on 20 December 2005. Retrieved 25 November 2006. 
  2. ^ "Socio-Political Commentary in the films of Jack Neo". Archived from the original on 17 May 2007. Retrieved 11 April 2007. 
  3. ^ "Jack Neo – Tanjong Katong schoolboy". Archived from the original on 9 March 2009. Retrieved 8 March 2009. 
  4. ^ "The rise and fall of Jack Neo". Asiaone.com. Archived from the original on 15 March 2010. Retrieved 30 December 2016. 
  5. ^ "Jack Neo starts programme to groom film-making talent". News.asiaone.com. 18 March 2013. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 30 December 2016. 
  6. ^ Loy, Vincent. "Malaysia's 1st Golden Wau Awards 2013". Archived from the original on 25 October 2015. Retrieved 22 March 2016. 
  7. ^ Singh, Bryna (26 October 2014). "Readers vote: Which Madame Tussauds Singapore wax figure looks most like the real McCoy?". Singapore Press Holdings. The Straits Times. Archived from the original on 27 October 2014. Retrieved 27 October 2014. 
  8. ^ Chan, Boon (20 August 2014). "One film for Singapore's 50th year from seven top local directors, including Eric Khoo and Jack Neo". Singapore Press Holdings. The Straits Times. Archived from the original on 23 August 2014. Retrieved 3 September 2014. 
  9. ^ Chua, Genevieve (4 January 2016). "Malaysian censors take issue with Singapore films". MediaCorp. TODAY. Archived from the original on 5 January 2016. Retrieved 6 January 2016. 
  10. ^ Goh, Marcus (25 March 2016). "Interracial marriage, slapping and dangerous fireworks in 'Long Long Time Ago 2'". Yahoo. Yahoo Singapore. Archived from the original on 8 April 2016. Retrieved 28 March 2016. 
  11. ^ "Model exposes affair with S'pore director Jack Neo". Archived from the original on 8 March 2010. Retrieved 7 March 2010. 
  12. ^ "Jack Neo involved with 11 women". AsiaOne. 9 March 2010. Archived from the original on 23 October 2017. Retrieved 22 October 2017. 
  13. ^ "French girl spills on Neo". Archived from the original on 13 March 2010. Retrieved 20 September 2018. 
  14. ^ "French girl is latest to claim Jack Neo hit on her. And she was only 16". The New Paper. 12 March 2010. Archived from the original on 22 October 2017. Retrieved 22 October 2017. 
  15. ^ "'I did not mean to hurt anyone'". Asiaone. 11 March 2010. Archived from the original on 14 March 2010. 
  16. ^ "Foyce makes police report". AsiaOne. 15 March 2010. Archived from the original on 22 March 2010. 
  17. ^ "Boomz Award: Foyce Le Xuan". Asiaone. Archived from the original on 8 February 2011. 
  18. ^ a b Foong Woei Wan (12 March 2010). "He sobs, she collapses: Neo and wife face the press". The Straits Times (Singapore).
  19. ^ "Jack Neo loses Mitsubishi Electric endorsement deal". Archived from the original on 26 March 2010. Retrieved 22 March 2010. 
  20. ^ Han, Wei Chou (29 May 2015). "Jack Neo unveils cast of new film Long Long Time Ago". Channel NewsAsia. Archived from the original on 3 August 2015. Retrieved 6 June 2015. 

External links[edit]