Ti Lung

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Ti Lung
Tam Fu-Wing

(1946-08-19) 19 August 1946 (age 73)
Tao Man-Ming (m. 1975)
ChildrenShaun Tam (son) ( (1980-07-30) 30 July 1980 (age 39))
AwardsHong Kong Film AwardsBest Supporting Actor
1999 The Kid

Golden Bauhinia AwardsLife Achievement Award
2007 Lifetime Achievement

Golden Horse AwardsBest Actor
1986 A Better Tomorrow

Chinese name
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese
Tam Fu-Wing
Traditional Chinese
Simplified Chinese

Tommy Tam Fu-Wing (born 19 August 1946), better known by his stage name Ti Lung, is a Hong Kong actor, known for his numerous starring roles in a string of Shaw Brothers Studio's films, particularly The Blood Brothers,The Avenging Eagle, Clans of Intrigue, The Duel, The Sentimental Swordsman and its sequel, as well as the classic John Woo film A Better Tomorrow.


Tam Fu Wing (Ti Lung) was born on 19 August in 1946 in Guangdong Province, China into a family with 4 members including himself, his parents and a younger sister. When he was 4 years old, the whole family moved to live in Hong Kong. He was educated at the Eton school in Hong Kong. However, after his father's death, he had to terminate his studies at the age of 11 in order to support his family. Initially, he worked as a delivery boy at a grocery store where he often delivered milk, newspapers and groceries. At 17, he trained as a tailor and studied Wing Chun with the master Jiu Wan in order to protect himself against street gangs.


In 1968, after he graduated year 2 college, Ti Lung responded to an advertisement placed by the Shaw Brothers and applied to the Shaw Acting Course. Upon graduation from the class, he was able to secure a minor role in Chang Cheh's Return of the One-Armed Swordsman starring Jimmy Wang Yu. Chang Cheh immediately recognized his potential and offered him the lead role in his next production Dead End opposite Golden Chan Hung-lit, a role which would launch his career as one of the best known faces in classic Wuxia films. At that time, he continued to study Wing Chun under the martial arts master Jiu Wan who described him as having the advantages of a strong body, intelligence, speed, good footwork, and a diligent work ethic. Jiu Wan granted Ti Lung a certificate upon completion of his martial arts training in Wing Chun, and Ti Lung subsequently learned other martial arts (and performance art skills) such as Judo, Muay Thai, Taekwondo, Wushu and horseback riding. Later on in his career, Ti Lung became a common face associated with David Chiang, Alexander Fu Sheng, Ku Feng, Chen Kuan-Tai, the Venom Mob, and other major Shaw Bros stars at the time, often cast as a dashing, noble hero as well as a capable martial artist.

Ti Lung is also perhaps more known for his collaborations with the most revered of Shaw Studio directors - Chang Cheh - who turned him into a star along with fellow actor and frequent co-star David Chiang in over 20 films: Dead End (1969), Have Sword, Will Travel (1969), Vengeance (1970), The Heroic Ones (1970), The Duel (1971), Duel of Fists (1971), The Deadly Duo (1971), Angry Guest (1972), Four Riders (1972), The Blood Brothers (1973), and The Pirate (1973). Due to their successes, the trio eventually became known as "The Iron Triangle." During the early 1970s, one of Ti Lung's most notable feature films was "The Blood Brothers" (1973) which netted him The Special Award for Outstanding Performance at the 11th Golden Horse Awards in Taiwan and the Special Jury Award at the Asian Film Awards in 1973. Soon after, Ti Lung moved forward ins his career by teaming up with Lar Kar-Leung, Chu Yuan, Sun Chung, and Tong Gai to produce movies still loved today such as: The Magic Blade (1976), Clans of Intrigue (1977), The Sentimental Swordsman (1977), The Avenging Eagle (1978), and Shaolin Prince (1983).

The famous standard formula of wusia movies produced by the Shaw Brothers took Chu Yuan as the director, Gu Long as the original playwright and Ti Lung as the hero. Chu Yuan directed more Gu Long movies than any other director did, and Ti Lung appeared in Chu Yuan's movies more than other actor did, such as in 'Clans of Intrigue, Chu Liusiang' in 1977, 'Legend of the Bat, Bianfu Chuanci' in 1978, 'The Magic Blade, Tianya Mingyue Dao' in 1976 and 'The Sentimental Swordsman, Duocing Jianke Wucing Jian' in 1977. In 1979, he won a Best Actor Award at the 25th Asian Film Awards as Black Eagle Chik Ming-Sing in The Avenging Eagle in 1978.

After he left Shaw Brothers Studios in the 1980s, Ti Lung's career took a turn for the worse until 1986, when John Woo cast him opposite Chow Yun-fat in A Better Tomorrow for the role of a Triad member, Sung-Tse Ho. The movie was a massive box office success and placed Ti Lung squarely back in the public consciousness, although it changed his image from the handsome young martial artist to the tortured, would-be hero gangster. His role in the film also won him a Best Actor Award at the 23rd Golden Horse Awards in 1986. After that role, Ti Lung's next most recognizable appearance would be with Jackie Chan in Drunken Master II, in which he co-starred as Wong Kei-Ying, father of Chinese folk hero Wong Fei Hung. In 1994-95, Ti Lung lead-starred as Bao Zheng in a Hong Kong version of the Justice Pao TV series for TVB. At the time this series was playing on Hong Kong television, many fans in Mainland China and Hong Kong favorably compared Ti Lung/TVB's Bao Zheng with Jin Chao-chun/Mainland China's Bao Zheng. Ti Lung also worked with Andy Lau in Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon as the legendary Guan Yu. From there, he has continued to steadily work in television in a variety of roles.

In 1999, Ti Lung experienced a comeback in movies by playing the role of Sir Lung in The Kid (1999), which enabled him to achieve a Best Supporting Actor award at the 19th Hong Kong Film Awards in 2000. In 2007, he received a Life Achievement Award at the Golden Bauhinia Awards. Until 2015, he played Master Lam in a Hong Kong and Malaysia feature film co-production, The Kid from the Big Apple. The role won him a Best Actor Award at the 7th Macau International Movie Festival. The sequel to the film is slated to premiere in Malaysia in November 2017.

The origin of the stage name "Ti Lung"[edit]

When he was a child, Ti Lung greatly admired the French actor Alain Delon. In 1968, at Shaw Brothers Studio, he asked production to choose a name for him which would sound like Alain Delon's in the hope of being as good an actor as he was. One day a secretary from the production (Mona Fong) found the name of "Ti Lung" for him and it stuck, 'Ti' being a lucky name and 'Lung' meaning dragon.

Personal life[edit]

Ti Lung married beauty queen and actress Tao Man Ming in 1975. In 1980, Tao gave birth to a son, Shaun Tam Chun-yin (谭俊彦). He is also the uncle of Jerry Lamb and Jan Lamb.


Year Title Role Notes
1969 Return of the One-Armed Swordsman (獨臂刀王) Lu Hong
Dead End (死角) Zhang Chun
Have Sword, Will Travel (保鏢) Siang
1970 Vengeance! (報仇) Guan Yulou
The Heroic Ones (十三太保) Shi Jingsi
The Singing Killer (小煞星) musician cameo
1971 King Eagle (鷹王) Jin Fei
The New One-Armed Swordsman (新獨臂刀) Feng Junjie
The Duel (大決鬥) Tang Renjie
The Anonymous Heroes (無名英雄) Tie Hu
Duel of Fists (拳擊) Wen Lie
Deadly Duo (雙俠) Bao Tingtian
1972 Angry Guest (惡客) Wen Lieh
The Water Margin (水滸傳) Wu Song
Trilogy of Swordsmanship (群英會) Xu Shiying Segment 3: "White Water Strand" (白水灘)
Young People (年輕人) Lam Tat
The Delightful Forest (快活林) Wu Song
Four Riders (四騎士) Feng Xia
1973 The Blood Brothers (刺馬) Ma Xinyi
The Generation Gap (叛逆) Ling Zhao
The Pirate (大海盜) Cheung Po Tsai
1974 The Drug Addict (吸毒者) Kuan Cheng-chun
Shatter Tai Pah
Five Shaolin Masters (少林五祖) Tsai Te-chung
The Two Faces of Love (小孩與狗)
The Savage Five (五虎將) Fang Yi-fei
Young Lovers on Flying Wheels (電單車) Song Da Also director
1975 The Young Rebel Gen Lai Also writer and director
All Men Are Brothers Wu Song
Black Magic Xu Nuo
The Empress Dowager Emperor Guangxu
1976 The Last Tempest Emperor Guangxu
7-Man Army Battalion Commander Wu Chaozheng
Shaolin Temple Cai De-zhong
The Snake Prince Snake Prince
Black Magic Part 2 Qi Zhong-ping
The Magic Blade Fu Hung-hsueh
1977 Clans of Intrigue Chu Liuxiang
Pursuit Of Vengeance Fu Hung-Hsueh
Death Duel Fu Hung-Hsueh
The Flying Guillotine 2 Ma Tang
Inheritor of Kung Fu
The Jade Tiger Zhao Wuji
The Naval Commandos Captain Liang Guan-qin
The Sentimental Swordsman Li Xunhuan
The Brave Archer Duan Zhixing
1978 The Avenging Eagle Black Eagle Chik Ming-sing
Legend of the Bat Chu Liuxiang
Soul of the Sword Nameless
Swordsman and Enchantress Mr. Xiao
1979 The Deadly Breaking Sword Tuan Changqing
The Kung Fu Instructor Wang Yang
Ten Tigers from Kwangtung Lai Yan-chiu
1980 The Convict Killer Teng Piao/Iron Chain
The Heroes Ko Fei / Wong Fei
Return of the Sentimental Swordsman Li Xunhuan
1981 The Brave Archer 3 Duan Zhixing
Emperor and His Brother Chen Chia-lo
1982 Clan Feuds Tie Zhong-tang
Shaolin Prince Dao Xing
Tiger Killer Wu Song
Perils of the Sentimental Swordsman Chu Liuxiang
Mercenaries from Hong Kong Luo Yi
1983 The Hidden Power of the Dragon Sabre General Tieh Zhen
Roving Swordsman Shen Sheng-yi
1984 A Friend from Inner Space Joe Weng
Destiny's Champion Benson Zhang
Ninja in the Deadly Trap
Death Ring
Shanghai 13 Dock boss
Opium and the Kung-Fu Master Tie Qiao San
1985 The Master Strikes Back Instructor Tong Tie-zheng
1986 A Better Tomorrow Sung Chi-ho
True Colours Ho Lung
The Kinemn Bombs
1987 A Better Tomorrow 2 Sung Chi-ho
The Legend of Wisley Pak Kei-wai
May Jane Commander
People's Hero Sunny Koo
1988 City War Ken Chow
Tiger on Beat Lung
Law or Justice? Long Fei
Love Me Dad Ken Chang
1989 Just Heroes Lung Cameo
Run, Don't Walk Luk Pui
1990 The Killer's Blues Wai Yi-ming
1991 The Banquet Chef Cameo
1993 Blade Of Fury Tan Si-tung / Chong Fei
First Shot Wong Yat Chung
A Warrior's Tragedy Fu Hung-suet
The Bare-Footed Kid Tuen Ching-wan
1994 Drunken Master II Wong Kei-ying
1999 The Kid Sir Lung
2000 Clean My Name, Mr. Coroner! Officer CK Lau
High K Zeng
Paramount Motel Master Sun
2001 Mist in Judge Fung Ka-wai
2002 Frugal Game Delon
2003 Star Runner Brother Lung
2005 New Born
2006 Heavenly Mission Cho Hung
My Wife Is a Gangster 3 Boss Lam
One Last Dance Captain Singaporean film
2008 Run Papa Run Mabel's dad
Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon Guan Yu
The Butterfly Lovers Zhu Gongyuan
2010 The Jade and the Pearl King
The Warrior's Way Saddest Flute
Frozen San
2013 7 Assassins Prefect Cheuk
2015 All You Need Is Love Old Captain
2015 The Kid from the Big Apple Master Lin (Lin Chun Gen)
2017 The Kid from the Big Apple 2: Before we forget Lin Chun Gen
2018 Staycation (一家大晒)
2019 Mermaid in the Sea


Year Network Title Role Notes
1994 TVB Justice Pao (包青天) Baau Cing
1996 TVB ICAC Investigators 1996 (廉政行動1996) Cheung Tin-yam
1998 TVB ICAC Investigators 1998 (廉政行動1998) Cheung Tin-yam
2003 Hunan TV My Fair Princess III (還珠格格3之天上人間) Qianlong Emperor
2004 Trail of the Everlasting Hero (俠影仙蹤) Wang Xizhi
Warriors of the Yang Clan (楊門虎將) Yang Ye
2010 Qin Xianglian (秦香蓮) Bao Zheng
KBS The Fugitive: Plan B (도망자 플랜 B) General Wei
2011 Qin Xianglian
2013 Team of Sword (刀子队)

[1] [2]

Representative Awards[edit]

Years Awards Title Role Category
1973 11th Golden Horse Awards The Blood Brothers Ma Xinyi The Special Award for Outstanding Performance
Asian Film Awards The Blood Brothers Ma Xinyi Special Jury Award
1979 25th Asian Film Awards The Avenging Eagle Black Eagle Chik Ming-sing Best Actor
1986 23rd Golden Horse Awards A Better Tomorrow Sung Chi-ho Best Actor
2000 19th Hong Kong Film Awards The Kid Sir Lung Best Supporting Actor
2007 12th Golden Bauhinia Awards Life Achievement Award
2015 7th Golden Lotus Awards The Kid from the Big Apple Master Lin (Lin Chun Gen) Best Actor
2017 PIFFA (Profima International fest & awards) Life Achievement Award


External links[edit]