Green Cloud Lau

The title is the English translation of this actor’s name: Lau Ching-Wan. Anyway, this article is a compilation of highlights from a 2000 interview that was conducted by Chris Ducker in July for Vol. 2 No. 2 of a British magazine called Hong Kong Superstars…

Full Alert (1997): “That was, of course, Ringo Lam’s Hong Kong come-back movie after he had been working in the U.S. I wasn’t too sure about the project at first, but after I had been on set with Francis Ng, Ringo and the rest of the crew for a couple of days, I knew that it would turn out great. The film was shot very interestingly. I can remember Ringo giving both Francis and me all the room that we needed to let our characters interact as well as develop. It was a very easy production to be involved in, even though I had to spend some of it swimming under water! Ringo is a completely different type of director to that of which I normally work with, whereas Johnnie To is very in-depth but he can also be a lot of fun. Derek Yee is, of course, a big romantic at heart with lots of girlfriends, but Ringo is probably the most serious of directors that I’ve worked with – he always looks serious even in between shots…even at lunch-time. But still, he is also one of Hong Kong’s best film-makers.”

Working with Jet Li on a film called Black Mask (1996): “My God! That guy is good! I have never met a better fighter. I remember sitting with him one day on the set, we were having lunch and were talking about the fight scenes in the movie. You could see that he totally loved it, every second! As an actor, he is totally focused, and from what I learnt about him whilst on the set – he could do pretty much anything given the time and help required to get the shot. I remember, when we were filming the fights, every time the director shouted out No good – it was my fault. Not once was it because of him. You know in the Wong Fei-Hung movies when he does that thing with the shoulder…you know, the thing where people grab his shoulder and he literally just twitches his arm so they go flying – that’s real. He can really do that. I know it might be hard to believe, but it’s totally true – I know. He did it to me, and boy did I go flying. That man is good…really good.”

The influence in the influx of Hong Kong talent going to Hollywood: “Obviously, it’s good for the industry here in Hong Kong. We need the exposure. You know, a lot of people don’t know that we are the third biggest film-making community in the world. John Woo, I think, is doing a great job in bringing his style of action to the big screen in America. He really is such a talented director, and is the best person in the industry for action. In fact, I saw an episode of the David Letterman show when Jackie Chan was on it, and the people there were going crazy for Jackie, screaming his name and everything. I couldn’t believe it!”

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