Damian Lau

Damian Lau
Chinese name 劉松仁 (traditional)
Chinese name 刘松仁 (simplified)
Pinyin Liú Sōngrén (Mandarin)
Jyutping Lau4 Cung4jan4 (Cantonese)
Born (1949-10-14) 14 October 1949
Hong Kong
Other name(s) Chung-tsai (松仔)
Occupation Actor, executive producer, Film director
Years active 1976 – present
Ancestry Chaozhou, Guangdong
Website lauchungyan.com
This is a Chinese name; the family name is Lau.

Damian Lau Chung-yan (born 14 October 1949) is a Hong Kong film and television actor, executive producer and film director. Lau has starred in many television drama series of various genres, produced by Hong Kong's TVB and ATV.


Early career

Lau enrolled into the actors' training class of RTV (now ATV) in 1971, where he started his early acting career. In 1976, he joined TVB on a contract and began to gain recognition for acting in television drama series produced by the TV station. In 1976, Lau rose to fame for his portrayal of the titular character in Luk Siu-fung, an adaptation of Wuxia writer Gu Long's novel series of the same title. His performance in Yesterday's Glitter also made him famous.

Partnership with Michelle Yim

Lau returned to ATV in 1980. He worked with Michelle Yim, as the male and female leading actor/actress respectively, in a number of TV series in the 1980s, including Fatherland, Chronicles of the Shadow Swordsman and Rise of the Great Wall. Since then, both of them were called "Best Onscreen Couple/Lovebirds". Lau and Yim worked together again in The Heaven Sword and Dragon Saber (2000), playing Cheung Mo-kei's parents.

Film career

Following the rise in popularity of Hong Kong cinema in the 1980s and 1990s, Lau also started working on films in addition to television series. He was often cast as a typical silent, handsome, heroic swordsman in many Wuxia films of the 1980s and 1990s.[1] One of his first major roles was in John Woo's Last Hurrah for Chivalry (1979), in which he played an assassin. In Duel to the Death, Lau's character faced Norman Tsui's character in a final duel, said to be one of the best sword duels ever in Wuxia film history.

In 2006, Lau starred in The Tokyo Trial, a highly controversial film that was nominated at the Cannes Film Festival and won the 2007 Golden Rooster Awards for Best Screenplay. In the film, Lau played the historic judge Mei Ju-ao, who was able to convince ten other national judges to prosecute Japanese war criminals for their crimes against peace and humanity. The film was also saw Lau delivering most of his lines in English for the first time in his acting career.

When interviewed about his role as Mei Ju-ao, Lau said,

"Mei Ju-ao is a person with a strong sense of ethics and national pride. He represented his country at a significant international affair. He had to shoulder great responsibility as well as a lot of pressure. If he did not harbor strong emotions and a patriotic heart within his bosom, he could hardly successfully overcome the many difficulties before him and fulfill the mission given by the country. He was cool-headed and witty throughout the trial. I tried to master his inner world through these aspects. I really respect him."[2]

Return to TVB

Lau returned to TVB in 1992 and achieved success for his performance in the The Greed of Man, in which he played an honest and cultured leader of the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, who was later murdered by his childhood friend, Ting Hai (played by Adam Cheng), over a love rivalry.

In 2003, Lau starred as Chow Ming-hin in the family drama Point of No Return.[3] The following year, Lau worked on Hard Fate, a controversial TV series that received many complaints from viewers for its suicide scenes. In the series, Lau played Leung Pak-yin, an originally morally upright and ambitious company boss who became a desperate, deranged and almost insane man after experiencing many fateful incidents.[4] In 2007, Lau played a family patriarch in The Drive of Life, a 60 episodes grand production by TVB and mainland China's CCTV.

Personal life

In the 1990s, Lau married a flight attendant from Cathay Pacific, whom he met earlier on a flight to Canada. Lau is also a devout Catholic.


Year Title Role Notes
1979 Last Hurrah for Chivalry Tsing Yi / Greeno
1980 The Enigmatic Case Lo Tin-kwan
Beidou Xing director and actor
1983 Zu - Warriors from the Magic Mountain Abbot Hsiao-yu
Duel to the Death Ching-wan
1984 Profile in Anger Wong Kin-hang
1986 The Brave and the Coward director
1988 School on Fire Wan
1990 The Story of My Son Li Tzu-liang
1991 Inspector Pink Dragon Teng Kuo-chiao
1992 The Thief of Time
Shanghai Heroic Story Ngai Ting-yim
She Starts the Fire cameo
Royal Tramp Chan Kan-nam
Royal Tramp 2 Chan Kan-nam
1993 Murder Yau Lung
Holy Weapon Mo Kake "Heaven's Sword"
The Magic Crane Yat Yeung-tze
Executioners Inspector Lau
The Heroic Trio Inspector Lau
1994 Tian Di Tai Chai-man
What Price Survival / One Armed Swordman Wu An-kuo
The New Legend of Shaolin Chan Kan-nam
Urban Cop executive producer
1995 My Father Is a Hero Yat-wah's boss
Sea Eagles Liu Qingzong
1996 Best of the Best Calvin Chan Lik-yeung
First Option Inspector Lau
Ah Kam Lawyer
1997 Lifeline Cheng Fu-shing
Till Death Do Us Part
2005 New Born Living Strong Professor Vincent Yu
2006 The Tokyo Trial Mei Ju-ao Nominated – Golden Rooster Awards for Best Actor
2008 Three Kingdoms: Resurrection of the Dragon Cao Cao cameo
2010 14 Blades Zhao Shenyan guest star
Year Title Role Notes
1976 Luk Siu-fung I: Mystery of the Golden Bird Luk Siu-fung
Luk Siu-fung II: Before and After the Duel Luk Siu-fung
Luk Siu-fung III: The Battle of Wudang Luk Siu-fung
Bansheng Yuan Cheung Yue-kan
1977 The Butterfly Lovers Leung San-bak
1978 Da Heng Chu Lok-man
1979 Princess Cheung Ping Chow Sai-hin
God of Sabre Ding Pang
1980 This Land is Mine
Yesterday's Glitter Kam Jan-sai
1983 Swordsman Li Bai Li Bai
1984 Dadi Enqing Zhi Gudu Jinglei Chow Kai-wah
1985 Chronicles of the Shadow Swordsman Zhang Dan-fung
1986 Hero of the Time Yuen Tsang-lok
Rise of the Great Wall King Or
Condor in September Yip Hoi
1987 Return the Pearl to Thee Chun Tin-bo
1988 August Scent Wu Suet-yim
Lay and Order Ai Bok-man
1989 Spring Comes and Goes Cheung Loi-fuk
1990 Lovers at the End of an Era Tung Sing-fan
1991 Bihai Qingtian Tin Yang
Jianghu Zaijian Chow Sing-lung
1992 The Thief of Time
The Greed of Man Fong Chun-sun
1994 The Great General Dik Ching
ICAC Investigators 1994 Lee Tin
The Chevaliers Zhan Zhao
1995 The Unexpected Cheung Wai-chung
1996 Women's Story Kwan King-sang
The Swordsman Yin Buk-fei / Yin Ku-hung
King of Gamblers Li Yik
1997 Interpol Wong Ho-sui
1998 Wen Yi Duo Wen Yiduo
1999 Silver Rat
Bond of Friendship Zhuang Xueren
2000 ICAC Investigators 2000 Lee Tin
Monk at Thirty Lin Chong
The Immortal Fugitive Rong Renjie
The Heaven Sword and Dragon Saber Cheung Tsui-san
Ups and Downs Hong Dalong
2001 The Awakening Story Suen Hok-kei
Dare to Strike Li Dechao MediaCorp, Singapore
To Where He Belongs Ko Hou-wan
2003 Scent of Love Jin Zhizhong
Point of No Return Chow Ming-hin Won – Astro Award for My Favourite On-screen Father
Nominated – Astro Award for Best Actor (Top 10)
Nominated – Astro Award for My Favourite Character (Top 20)
Find the Light Chan Do-yeung
True Love Fok Wai-pong
2004 Only You Wang Haoran
Hard Fate Leung Pak-yin
2005 The Royal Swordsmen Tiedan Shenhou
2006 The Conquest King Goujian of Yue Ming Pao Magazine Best Actor award for TV series (2007)
Men in Pain Hong Tin-yam Nominated – TVB Award for Best Actor
Nominated – TVB Award for My Favourite Male Character
Nominated – Astro Award for My Favourite On-screen Look (Top 5)
Eight Heroes Guan Yulou
2007 The Drive of Life Wah Man-hon Nominated – TVB Award for Best Actor
Nominated – TVB Award for My Favourite Male Character
Nominated – Astro Award for Best Actor (Top 5)
Nominated – Astro Award for My Favourite Character (Top 20)
2008 Catch Me Now Ko Chit, Jack Nominated – TVB Award for Best Actor
Rose Martial World Jun Wuji
2009 In the Chamber of Bliss Choi Ock Nominated – TVB Award for Best Actor
2010 Growing Through Life Hai Liang Nominated – TVB Award for Best Actor
A Weaver on the Horizon Feng Jiujin
2011 The Rippling Blossom Moyung Ching
Lives of Omission Kung Ka-pui Nominated – My AOD Favourite Award for Best Supporting Actor (Top 5)
Nominated - TVB Anniversary Award for Best Supporting Actor
Scarlet Heart Kangxi Emperor
2012 Silver Spoon, Sterling Shackles Arthur Chung Cheuk-man Nominated – TVB Anniversary Award for Best Actor (Top 5)
Nominated – My AOD Favourite Award for Best Actor (Top 12)
Nominated – My AOD Favourite Award for Top 15 Character
2015 Limelight Years Ben Law
The Dream Makers II Zheng Shouyi MediaCorp, Singapore
Guest star

Major Achievements

List of achievements
Year Achievement Representative work Notes
1999 All-Time Most Memorable Male Leading Roles, 1999 TVB Anniversary Awards Luk Siu-fung
2007 Best Actor, Ming Pao Magazine The Conquest
Best Actor nomination, 2007 Golden Rooster Awards The Tokyo Trial
Best Actor nomination, 29th Hundred Flowers Award Tokyo Trial


External links

Wikiquote has quotations related to: Damian Lau
Awards and achievements
Power Academy Awards
Preceded by
Roger Kwok
for Life Made Simple
Outstanding Actor in Television
for The Conquest
Succeeded by
Ha Yu
for Moonlight Resonance
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