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Hong Kong Film Directors' Guild - Directors - Kwok Lap LI
李旦立 | LI Kwok Lap

In the Hong Kong film industry, I know I am not considered a mainstream director; at most I can be considered a film and television media person. I used to hang out at the Hong Kong Film Culture Centre. Eventually I gave up my high-paying job at a bank and started from the bottom at Rediffusion Television, working as production assistant. In more than three decades in film, I had made a few films of no particular consequences and a great number of television series. I had worked not only in Hong Kong but also in Singapore, Taiwan and Mainland China. I am fortunate to have chanced upon the prevailing timing of Hong Kong filmmakers integrating themselves into the Mainland industry. Lately, I have been thinking about how Hong Kong directors can use their own creative ideas and take advantage of the golden opportunity offered by the Greater China film market.


Born in 1958 in Hong Kong, Daniel Li Kwok-lap started working for Rediffusion Television as production assistant in 1980. He switched to TVB in 1982 to work as director and was promoted to producer in 1989, producing over a dozen series in various genres, among them A Time of Taste (1990), A World Apart (1990), and Fate of the Clairvoyant (1994), the last of which was voted the most popular programs of 1994 in a year-end poll.

He started directing films in 1992, debuting with Sting of the Scorpion (1992) and followed by Murders Made to Order (1993), On Parole (1993) and On Parole No. 2 - Do Unto Others (1993). In 1994, Li went to China to direct Shanghai Fever (1994), a comedy starring Sean Lau Ching-wan and Chinese actress Pan Hong, which was awarded the Best Co-Production Film by the State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television (SARFT). Later, his Lover’s Tears (1999) won the d Best Co-Production Film at the China Huabiao Film Awards, presented by SARFT. In 1997, Li took on the post of Head of Productions at China Film Group Corporation, overseeing film and television productions.

In 1998, Li formed Chinese International in China and produced and directed Four Chefs and a Feast. As production chief, he executive produced all the company’s film and television productions. In addition, Li directed drama like series The Legendary Siblings (1999), Chinese Paladin (2004), The Legend of the Condor Heroes (2008) and Life in Sanyuan County (2009), as well as the highest rated show of the year, the time-travel program Startling By Each Step (2011). Li’s latest output as a director was the sequel Startling by Each Step 2 (2013).

Year Chinese name English name Directors
1999 《四個廚師一圍菜》
Four Chefs and a Feast
1996 《情人的眼淚》
Lover's Tears
1995 《海根》
Sea Root
1995 《九紋龍的謊言》
Because of Lies
1994 《股瘋》
Shanghai Fever
1993 《蠍子之滅殺行動》
Murders Made to Order
1993 《監獄風雲外篇之獄鳳》
On Parole
1993 《獄鳳之殺出重圍》
On Parole No. 2 - Do Unto Others
1992 《蠍子》
Sting of the Scorpion