Monday, May 9, 2011

Fan-Boy Icon #41 - James Hong

So, you are making a movie and you need a Chinese actor. Who do you get? James Hong, of course. He is the Chinese Morgan Freeman. That is not to disrespect the guy, he delivers, and has been in everything. The IMDb has his first film role as an uncredited police officer in 1955's Soldiers of Fortune and lists him with a staggering 365 film roles. He has Godzilla voice credits, The New Adventures of Charlie Chan, Dragnet, The Adventures of Rin Tin Tin, Death Valley Days, Have Gun Will Travel, The Outer Limits, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The New Adventures of Wonder Woman, and a ton of other television.

Of course, two of his big, famous roles were in Blade Runner and Big Trouble in Little China. In BTiLC he plays the main antagonist, David Lo Pan, a reincarnated wizard searching for the right girl to sacrifice in order to restore his vitality. It is an awesome film all around, but Hong's work is wonderful. Lo Pan appears both as the doddering old man and the young, vital wizard. He is manic and threatening. It is a very Fu Manchu role, but with far less of the ham-fisted stereotypes that that character at times brings to film. If you have not seen it, it is an awesome film. John Carpenter made it, and it stars Kurt Russell. There are a slew of other great Asian American actors and actresses. Kung-Fu, magic, monsters. Horror, comedy, action. It is great.


Kal said...

He is one of my favorite character actors of all time. I never loved him more than as Po's 'father' in 'Kung Fu Panda'. For some reason his voice was perfect for a goose character. Despite all the character roles he has played in film or TV, he never lets you down.

T. Roger Thomas said...

Wow, that's a lot of roles

Darius Whiteplume said...

@Kal - true.

@TRT - I am constantly seeing him in stuff. He's 82 an still making films.

H8s2lose said...

He's a movie & TV icon and needs to be recognized by the academy. Please copy the link below & paste in the web address and sign the petition.


I just signed the petition "Board of Governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences: Present James Hong with an Honorary Academy Award" on

It's important. Will you sign it too? Here's the link:

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