Tang Wei

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Tang Wei
Tang Wei in Seoul 2011.jpg
Tang in Seoul, South Korea in 2011
Born (1979-10-07) October 7, 1979 (age 37)
Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China
Residence Hangzhou
Nationality Chinese
Education Central Academy of Drama - (B.S., 2002)
Occupation Actress
Years active 1998–present
Spouse(s) Kim Tae-yong (m. 2014)
Children 1
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Tang.

Tang Wei[1] (simplified Chinese: 汤唯; traditional Chinese: 湯唯; pinyin: Tāng Wéi; born October 7, 1979) is a Chinese actress. She rose to prominence for her appearance in Lust, Caution (2007).

Life and career[edit]

1979–2005: Early life and career beginnings[edit]

Tang was born in Wenzhou, Zhejiang, China and raised in Hangzhou, Zhejiang to Wenzhounese parents. She is the only child of a former stage actress and painter. In an interview, she explained that she often travelled around China and learned to paint, adding that she was influenced by her parents.[2] Tang graduated from a local vocational high school in her hometown in 1996, where her teachers described her as "athletic" and a "good student who always did her homework". She had no plans to become famous; she originally aspired to become an archaeologist or lawyer.[3] Tang made the decision to enter the entertainment industry after doing some modelling in 1997. She graduated from the Central Academy of Drama in 2002.

Shortly after her university graduation, Tang met Stan Lai during one of his trips to China. He was impressed by the actress, and was quoted as saying, "The number of stars may not be good actors, a lot of good actors may not be good stars, but Tang Wei was fortunate to have done it." He proceeded to recommend her to several directors and was thus cast in more roles, although she was relatively unknown outside her hometown in China at this time. Nonetheless, Tang starred in a TV series, Policewoman Swallow (2004) and a brief university drama, Che Guevara (2004). After working with a more diverse group of actresses, she also appeared in TV dramas Leaving Seafront Street (2005), East Meets West (2005) and Born in the 60s (2006).[4]

2006–08: Lust, Caution[edit]

In July 2006, Tang was selected from more than 10,000 actresses[5][6] to appear in Ang Lee's Lust, Caution (2007) as Wong Chia Chi, co-starring Tony Leung Chiu-Wai, Joan Chen, and Leehom Wang. She learned both Shanghainese and the related Suzhou dialect during that time, and was trained in a more formal style of dressing and acting. Tang won the Best New Performer Golden Horse award. Tang was also nominated for the Independent Spirit Award, and was present at the ceremony in Santa Monica, California in February 2008. She received wider fame throughout and beyond China after this role. In March 2008, China's State Administration of Radio Film and Television (SARFT) ordered a media ban due to Tang's performance of sexual acts in Lust, Caution.[7][8] Because of the controversy instigated by the statement, this was followed by discontinuing most of Tang's forthcoming TV commercials to endorse various snack foods and cosmetics.

A play director named Stan Lai, who was her professor at Central Academy for Drama, and also a friend of Ang Lee recommended her to him.

2009–present: Late Autumn and Crossing Hennessey[edit]

She was set to star in Tian Zhuangzhuang's budget period film The Warrior and the Wolf (2009), but was replaced by Maggie Q.[9] In February 2009, during her absence from the movie industry, she was reported to have briefly attended drama classes at the University of Reading in the United Kingdom.[10][11]

Tang at the Chopard Trophy Awards Party at Cannes in 2008

From November 2009 to March 2010, Tang filmed with Hyun Bin in Late Autumn (2010), directed by Kim Tae-yong.[12][13] Late Autumn was shot in Seattle, Washington.[14][15] In Crossing Hennessy (2010), a romantic drama, with Jacky Cheung, Tang plays the orphaned Oi Lin who falls for the troubled Xu. Her uncle proceeds to attempt to avert the attraction to another man, and succeeds as the plan ends in marriage.[16] She learned Cantonese during this time, and was reported to be very capable despite the limited filming time and her role in the movie.[17] Tang's first film to be shown in China since Lust, Caution, a March 2010 news article quoted her as saying, "Coming to Hong Kong for this premiere, I can see director Ivy and co-star Andy On again. I've been very happy. Now I'm just excited to see the movie. I will be happy if everyone can see my work."[18]

In September 2010, it was announced she was to appear in The Founding of a Party. Her scenes were all cut in the theatrical version, allegedly at the request of Mao Zedong's grandson, Mao Xinyu.[19][20]

In 2011, Tang returned to mainstream cinema with two major films, Speed Angels and Dragon. Although the former was not a box office success, Dragon was a hit at the Chinese box office.

In 2013, Tang had her biggest commercial success when she starred opposite actor Wu Xiubo in the Xue Xiaolu directed romantic comedy Finding Mr. Right, which garnered her high praise from reviewers and was a runaway success at the box office. Shanghai newspaper, City Weekend wrote, "The most compelling element of the movie however, is still Tang Wei herself. It is a testament to her on-screen charisma that such a shrill, materialistic and generally awful character can have the audience rooting for her. After being temporarily banned from Chinese cinema for her controversial debut, Tang proves that she is one of the most promising young actresses the PRC has available. Let’s hope that the local filmmakers realize they have found Mrs. Right."[21]

Personal life[edit]

Tang met actor Zhu Yuchen, a Shanghai native, in 1995. By 1998, the couple had moved in together while continuing university education. They officially split in 2002, a few days before graduation.[22]

Tang ended a three-year relationship with Tian Yu (田羽) in December 2007.[23] She would not reveal further details or reasons for the split, but stated, "Tian Yu is important to me, and for years, he was the person who treated me the best. He always cared about and helped me quietly. Without him, I definitely would not have played a role in Lust, Caution, and wouldn't have the success I've made today. I will always feel grateful to him." Following the success of Lust, Caution, Tang obtained residency in Hong Kong.[24]

Tang began dating South Korean film director Kim Tae-yong in 2009. The couple met while filming Late Autumn.[25][26]

On July 12, 2014, Tang and Kim married in the front yard of the home of film legend Ingmar Bergman on the remote Swedish island of Fårö;[27][28] a formal wedding ceremony was later held in Hong Kong, with only immediate family members as guests.[29][30][31] In August 2016, Tang gave birth to their daughter.[32]



Year Title Role
2001 A Dream Like a Dream Lai Shengchuan
2004 Che Guevara Yang Ting


Year Title Role
1998 Chinese Female Football Goalkeeper
2004 Policewoman Swallow Swallow
Sons and Daughters of the Red Cross Ning Xiaoya
2005 Brother, Brother Secretary
Leaving Seafront Street Yan Lei
Qingqian Nalati Chen Yan
2006 Born in the 60s Yue Linlin
Silent Tears Shang Li


Year Title Role Notes
2007 Lust, Caution Wang Chia-chi Chopard Trophy (Cannes Film Festival)
New Weekly Cutting Edge Awards List
Chinese Film Award for Best Actress
Los Angeles Magazine Award for Best Actress
Asian Pacific Film and TV Expo for Best Actress
Hollywood Awards for Best Actress and Variety
Venice Film Festival for Best New Actress
Golden Horse Awards for Best New Performer
Nominated - Asian Film Awards for Best Actress
Nominated - Rising Star Award, BAFTA
Nominated - Chicago Film Critics Association Awards for Most Promising Performer
Nominated - Golden Horse Awards for Best Actress
Nominated - Independent Spirit Award for Best Female Lead
Nominated - Online Film Critics Society Awards for Breakthrough Performer
2010 Crossing Hennessy Oi-lin Chinese Film Media Awards for Best Actress
Nominated - Golden Horse Awards for Best Actress
Nominated - Hong Kong Film Critics Society Awards for Best Actress
Nominated - Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actress
Late Autumn Anna Baeksang Arts Awards for Best Actress
Korean Association of Film Critics Awards for Best Actress
Busan Film Critics Awards for Best Actress
KOFRA Film Awards for Best Actress
Nominated - Blue Dragon Film Awards for Best Actress
2011 The Founding of a Party Tao Yi (Scenes Removed before Release)
Dragon Ayu
Speed Angels Hong Xiaoyi
2013 Finding Mr. Right JiaJia Nominated - Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actress
2014 The Golden Era Xiao Hong
2015 Blackhat Chen Lien
Monster Hunt Dealer
Only You
A Tale of Three Cities
Office Sophie
2016 Finding Mr. Right 2 JiaJia [33]

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Film Result Ref
2006 CCTV Movie Channel Award Outstanding Digital Movie Actress Policeman Swallow Won
2007 Golden Horse Awards Best New Performer Lust, Caution Won
2007 Golden Horse Awards Best Actress Lust, Caution Nominated
2007 New Weekly Cutting Edge Awards List Lust, Caution Won
2007 Chinese Film Media Award Best Actress Lust, Caution Won
2007 Los Angeles Magazine Award Best Actress Lust, Caution Won
2007 Asian Pacific Film and TV Expo Best Actress Lust, Caution Won
2007 Hollywood Awards Best Actress and Variety Lust, Caution Won
2007 Venice Film Festival Best New Actress Lust, Caution Won
2008 Independent Spirit Awards Best Actress Lust, Caution Nominated
2008 Chopard Trophy Award Best Actress Lust, Caution Nominated
2010 Golden Horse Awards Best Actress Crossing Hennessy Nominated [34]
2011 2011 Baeksang Arts Awards Best Actress Late Autumn Won
2011 Busan Film Critics Awards Best Actress Late Autumn Won
2011 China Film Media Awards Best Actress Crossing Hennessy Won
2016 Hong Kong Film Awards Best Actress The Golden Era (film) Nominated
2015 Asian Film Awards Best Actress The Golden Era (film) Nominated

Other honors[edit]

  • 2004 - Miss Universe China finalist
  • 2007 - Top Chinese fashion figure
  • 2007 - New York Times listed her as one of the Best 15 Performers in 2007
  • 2008 - The Annual Independent Critics List #59 of 2008 World's Most Beautiful People
  • 2008 - Forbes ranked her 18th on the China Celebrity 100 list
  • 2008 - Japanese magazine Cut placed her in the Top 50 Best Active Celebrities
  • 2008 - Accepted invitation and appeared at the Cannes Film Festival


  1. ^ She has appeared in English language films under the name Tang Wei. In an interview, she stated that her Western name is Rebecca. Tang Wei: Lust, Caution, Past, and Future All-China's Women Federation. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  2. ^ "Tang Wei: A Debut As Big As the Country She Comes From"
  3. ^ "Tang Wei in the eyes of those who know her" China Internet Information Center. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  4. ^ (Chinese) "赖声川话剧杭州上演 澄清并未向李安推荐汤唯". ent.163.com. February 29, 2008. Retrieved June 4, 2010.
  5. ^ "Ang Lee casts Tang Wei for "Lust, Caution". Xinhua News Agency. July 12, 2006. Retrieved May 11, 2010.
  6. ^ Lust, Caution Exclusive: Ang Lee
  7. ^ "TANG WEI - WEI'S CHINESE MEDIA BAN" Contactmusic.com. March 10, 2008. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  8. ^ "Tang Wei blacklisted for 'glorifying traitors'". The Times. March 11, 2008. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  9. ^ "Maggie Q to star in 'Wolf'" Variety. September 25, 2008. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  10. ^ February 25, 2009 Hong Kong Movie DataBase. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  11. ^ May 9, 2009 Hong Kong Movie DataBase. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  12. ^ "Hyun Bin, Tang Wei-wei Cast in Korea-US Project". Korea Times. November 5, 2009. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  13. ^ "Hyun Bin's "got feel": Tang Wei". MSN. May 10, 2010. Retrieved July 18, 2010.
  14. ^ "In star-studded 'Late Autumn,' Seattle plays starring role". Seattle Post-Intelligencer. February 28, 2010. Retrieved September 25, 2010.
  15. ^ "Tang Wei, Hyun Bin Meet in 'Late Autumn'". Cri English. September 23, 2010. Retrieved September 25, 2010.
  16. ^ "Tang Wei plans return to silver screen alongside Jacky Cheung" Xinhua News Agency. February 4, 2009. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  17. ^ "Tang Wei: "I Still Haven't Learned to be a Star". The Bund. April 2010. Retrieved May 11, 2010.
  18. ^ "Ang Lee protege Tang Wei premieres first film since reported China ban over 'Lust, Caution'". Star Tribune. March 21, 2010. Retrieved March 21, 2010.
  19. ^ "China's leading lady Tang Wei deemed too racy to star in Mao movie". The Independent. May 16, 2011. Retrieved August 6, 2011.
  20. ^ "Tang Wei cut from China's propaganda epic". Variety. May 14, 2011. Retrieved August 6, 2011.
  21. ^ http://www.cityweekend.com.cn/shanghai/articles/blogs-shanghai/movie/film-review-xiao-lu-xues-finding-mr-right/
  22. ^ "汤唯朱雨辰旧情曝光(非常详细)". April 29, 2009. Retrieved March 21, 2010.
  23. ^ "Lust, Caution actress opens up about ex-boyfriend." Xinhua News Agency. December 18, 2007. Retrieved March 21, 2010.
  24. ^ (Chinese) "因曾获金马奖 汤唯通过"优才计划"成为香港人" Xinhua News Agency. August 24, 2008. Retrieved November 17, 2009.
  25. ^ "Tang Wei to Marry Korean Director Kim". Wall Street Journal. July 2, 2014. Retrieved July 3, 2014. 
  26. ^ "China's Tang Wei to Marry Korean Director". Chosun Ilbo. July 3, 2014. Retrieved July 4, 2014. 
  27. ^ "Lust, Caution actress Tang marries in Sweden". Associated Press. July 25, 2014. Retrieved July 26, 2014. 
  28. ^ "Lust, Caution star Tang Wei weds at Ingmar Bergman's house". The Straits Times. July 25, 2014. Retrieved July 26, 2014. 
  29. ^ "Chinese actress, Korean director had formal wedding in Hong Kong: agency". Yonhap. August 19, 2014. Retrieved August 19, 2014. 
  30. ^ "Tang Wei and Kim Tae-yong marry". Korea Herald. August 19, 2014. Retrieved August 19, 2014. 
  31. ^ "Tang Wei's Wedding Pictures Revealed". Chosun Ilbo. August 20, 2014. Retrieved August 20, 2014. 
  32. ^ http://www.koreaherald.com/view.php?ud=20160828000292
  33. ^ Tang Wei and Wu Xiubo Film Sequel to “Finding Mr. Right”
  34. ^ "Ex-blacklisted actress vies for Chinese-language 'Oscar'". Agence France-Presse. October 2, 2010. Retrieved October 2, 2010.

External links[edit]