When I graduated from the Academy for Performing Arts, I never thought I would become a director. I just wanted to find a job as quickly as possible and be independent, because I felt I had been in school too long and used up too much of my mother's money.
It was a matter of luck and circumstance that I found a job in the film industry, working as an assistant director for eight years. I was fortunate to be able to catch the tail end of the golden age of the Hong Kong film industry. I am thankful to Leo Heung Lap-hang, Benny Chan, Johnnie To and Joe Ma for leading me onto this fast train to the land of dreams. This train has not stopped, but merely slowed down, only to continue in a more steady way. I hope I can take aspiring young people along on this train.
Making films was never an easy task, but when I saw people laughing and being moved by my films, and earning my mother’s praise in the process, I thought everything was worth it.
As our film industry struggles to survive, it needs people to move it forward, to innovate and take risks.
Alan Mak Shiu-fai was born in Hong Kong in 1965. He attended the Academy for Performing Arts and studied acting. Upon graduation in 1990, he entered the film industry to work behind the camera, and over the next few years, served successively as assistant director to Johnnie To, Benny Chan and Joe Ma and accumulated a wealth of production experience. He made his directorial debut in 1998 with Nude Fear, followed by such works as Rave Fever (1999) and The War Named Desired (2000). Mak’s career breakthrough came with the 2002 work Infernal Affairs, which he co-directed with Andrew Lau, with a screenplay written by Mak and Felix Chong Man-keung. The film won over ten awards at the Hong Kong Film Awards and the Taiwan Golden Horse Awards, including Best Director and Best Screenplay. Not only was Infernal Affairs a box office hit, its rights was sold to Hollywood and remade into The Departed (2006), directed by Martin Scorsese, which won 4 Academy Awards, including Best Director and Best Film, the first work adapted from a foreign film to win this honor.
Mak formed a production company in 2007 with long-time partner Felix Chong to develop their own projects. The company’s film was Lady Cop and Papa Crook, which he co-directed with Chong. The pair was also responsible for Overheard and the two sequels that followed. Overheard was nominated for numerous awards at the Hong Kong Film Awards and the Golden Horse Awards, including Best Director, Best Screenplay and Best Film. The latest installment in the series, Overheard 3 (2014), starred Louis Koo, Sean Lau Ching-wan and Daniel Wu.
|Year||Chinese name||English name||Directors|
||The Silent War||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||Overheard 2||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||The Lost Bladesman||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||Overheard||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||Lady Cop and Papa Crook||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||Lady Cop & Papa Crook||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||Confession of Pain||LAU Andrew|
||Moonlight in Tokyo|
||Moonlight in Tokyo||CHONG Man Keung Felix|
||Initial D||LAU Andrew|
||1:99||CHEUNG Mabel LAW Alex TSUI Hark CHAN Gordon CHEN Teddy LAU Andrew CHAN Peter MA Joe CHOW Sing Chi Stephen CHAN Fruit LAM Dante|
||Infernal Affairs II||LAU Andrew|
||Infernal Affairs III||LAU Andrew|
||Infernal Affairs||LAU Andrew|
||The War Named Desired|