The Banquet (1991 film)
The Banquet VHS cover
|Mandarin||Háo Mén Yè Yàn|
|Cantonese||Hou4 Mun4 Je6 Jin3|
|Directed by||Alfred Cheung|
Tony Leung Chiu-Wai
Tony Leung Ka-Fai
|Music by||Lowell Lo|
|Edited by||Shao Feng|
The Banquet (Chinese: 豪門夜宴; Haomen yeyan; literally "Rich and Powerful Family Evening Banquet"), also known as Party of a Wealthy Family, is a 1991 Hong Kong comedy film. It was quickly filmed for a Hong Kong flood relief charity, after the Yangtze River flooded in July of that year, killing over 1,700 people and displacing many more in the eastern and southern regions of mainland China.
A large ensemble of actors and crew (including multiple directors and cinematographers) worked on the film, many in supporting roles and cameos. The principal star is Eric Tsang.
Developer Tsang Siu-Chi (Eric Tsang) and his agent (Jacky Cheung) have bought two of a group of four properties. Rival developer, Boss Hung (Sammo Hung) has secured the other two properties. Both aim to buy all four so they can knock them down and build hotels.
The agent learns that billionaire Kuwait Prince Allabarba (George Lam) is due to arrive in Hong Kong and advises Tsang that they could dupe him in order to gain a billion dollar contract. The prince's father has recently died and the prince bitterly regrets that he wasn't a good son.
The agent tells Tsang that he should make a show of the positive relationship he has with his father, to impress the prince. Unfortunately, Tsang has not seen his father (Richard Ng) for 10 years. Along with his wife (Carol Cheng) and his sycophantic assistant (Tony Leung Chiu Wai), Tsang heads off to bring his father back. When they meet up, Tsang pretends to have cancer to convince his father to come home, along with his sister (Rosamund Kwan) and her husband (Tony Leung Ka Fai).
Tsang throws a banquet to impress the prince, pretending that it is also a birthday party for his father. However, it has all been a ploy by the agent, who has secretly been working for Boss Hung.
Almost 100 well-known Hong Kong actors appeared in the film, many of them in cameo roles. The core cast consists of:
- Eric Tsang – Tsang Siu-Chi
- Sammo Hung – Boss Hung Tai-Po
- Jacky Cheung – Jacky Cheung Ah Hok Yau
- John Shum – Curly, Boss Hung's assistant
- Tony Leung Chiu-Wai – Wai, Tsang's assistant
- Rosamund Kwan – Gigi, Tsang's sister
- Tony Leung Ka-Fai – Leung, Gigi's husband
- Richard Ng – Father Tsang
- Carol Cheng (Cheng Yu-Ling, aka Do Do Cheng) – Mimi, Tsang's wife
- Joey Wong – Honey, Jacky's wife
- George Lam – Prince Alibaba of Kuwait ("Allabarba" in subtitles)
- Kwan Hoi San – Uncle Chicken Roll
- Lau Siu-Ming – Wong
- Jamie Luk – Vassal
- Pau Hon Lam – Uncle Lotus Seed Bun
- Michelle Reis – Kar-Yan Li
- Lydia Shum – Aunt Bill (as Lydia Sham)
- Bill Tung – Uncle Bill
- Raymond Wong – Forty
- Gabriel Wong – Vassal
- Tony Leung Ka-Fai – Ah Fai
- Stephen Chow – Himself
- Andy Lau – Presenter
- Maggie Cheung – Personal Singing Instructor
- Chin Kar Lok
- Leslie Cheung – Himself
- Anita Mui – Herself
- Aaron Kwok – Leslie's Younger Brother
- Anthony Chan
- Ti Lung – Cook # 2
- Kara Hui – Household Servant
- Teresa Mo – Presenter
- Simon Yam – Wai's friend, body language instructor & gigolo
- David Wu – Jogger
- John Woo – Guest
- Yuen Miu
- Yuen Tak
- Sandra Ng – Trolley Waitress
- Andrew Yu
- Candice Yu
- Eric Kot – English Instructor
- Jan Lamb
- Karl Maka – Wai's uncle, make-up artist
- Sally Yeh – Herself
- Sylvia Chang – Herself
- Angie Chiu
- Gong Li – Herself
- Michael Hui – Himself
- Leon Lai – Cook Assistant
- Alan Tam – Ali Baba dream version
- Ng Man Tat – Cook #1
- Meg Lam
- Wong Wan-Si
- Kenneth Tsang – Waiter
- Teddy Robin – Football player
- Alfred Cheung
- Philip Chan – Police Officer
- Melvin Wong – Guest
- Billy Lau
- Gordon Liu
- Maria Cordero – Guest
- Gloria Yip
- Josephine Koo
- Hoi Sang Lee
- Mimi Zhu – Guest
- Tai Chi Squadron – Music Band
- Lowell Lo – Taxi Driver
- Anglie Leung
- Lau Kar Leung – Martial Arts Instructor for Fencing
- Fung Hak On
The character of Father Tsang has a number of staff, including a sword expert, Master Lau / Uncle Nine (Lau Kar-leung), a servant (Kara Hui), two English teachers (Eric Kot and Jan Lamb), a make-up artist Mak (Karl Maka) and a body language expert / gigolo (Simon Yam).
Tsang Siu-Chu has a daydream about the banquet, in which his imagined self is played by Leslie Cheung, with Aaron Kwok as his brother, and the imagined Prince Allabarba is played by George Lam. He also fantasises that a stream of attractive actresses including Anita Mui, Sally Yeh, Sylvia Chang, Angie Chiu and Gong Li attend the meal. These are followed by leading Hong Kong actors including Anthony Chan Yau, Stephen Chow and Michael Hui (accompanied by Maria Cordero). All of these actors play themselves in the dream sequence, and some return in additional roles at the actual banquet.
Guests at the banquet include David Chiang, Tony Ching, Ku Feng, Carina Lau, Lee Hoi San, Loletta Lee, Waise Lee, Maggie Cheung, Bryan Leung, Mars, Lawrence Ng, Barry Wong, Johnnie To, Melvin Wong, John Woo, Pauline Yeung, Gloria Yip, Chor Yuen, Tai Chi Squadron, Yuen Cheung Yan, Mimi Zhu and the band members of Grasshopper.
Further roles include Teresa Mo and Andy Lau as TV presenters, with Teddy Robin Kwan, Wan Chi Keung and Billy Lau as soccer players. Philip Chan and Anglie Leung play a pair of cops, chasing a thief played by Tommy Wong. Additional cameos include Josephine Koo as a photographer, James Wong as a food vendor, David Wu as a jogger, Lowell Lo as a cab driver, and Mars (actor) as an unknown role.
The film grossed HK $21.92 million in Hong Kong.