Growing up in Troy, New York, Michael Wong couldn't speak Cantonese. He had no formal training in acting. And he had never studied martial arts. So how is it that Michael and brothers Russell and Declan were able to break into Hong Kong's highly incestuous film industry?
If I had known more about Michael before meeting him last week, I would surely have asked him. Problem is, I didn't know that the film star was going to be guest of honour at the intimate luncheon I was invited to at Hullett House in Kowloon's Tsim Sha Tsui section on 3 May 2012.
Michael's appearance was a surprise, and I had therefore not had a chance to read his bio.
Pictured: Action Actor and Film Director Michael Wong (above) shows his new Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 LTE in front of the 1010 outlet in Tsim Sha Tsui.
Samsung 4G Tablets
All I knew was that Hong Kong mobile operator 1010, CSL Limited's premium brand, was launching a series of 4G tablets, which were said to be the city's first. And this, I assumed, was to be some sort of product launch. Lunches are sometimes thrown in to encourage journalists to show up.
As it turned out, Michael was to be the first customer in Hong Kong to receive his top of the line Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 LTE.
After the 10 or so journalists had been seated around a table in a sumptuous white on white private dining room, Mark Liversidge, Chief Marketing Officer of CSL Limited, made contact with Michael, who was making his way through Hong Kong's narrow streets by high performance motorbike.
Within minutes, the dashing young actor was walking through the door. He was introduced to us and showed us his new device.
Smart Phones Part of Active Lifestyle
“We are thrilled to have Michael as a 1010 customer and for him to experience the first 4G tablet on the first 4G network in Hong Kong,” Mark said.
Michael sat down and told us how smart phones had become part of his active lifestyle. During shoots, for example, he could make contact with writers to suggest changes in the script without having to have them snooping around the set.
Actors and directors, apparently, don't fancy having writers hanging around when they're shooting a scene.
“The 4G LTE network will give me a near instant download on whichever device best fits what I need at any time – whether socializing, uploading photos to Facebook, or pitching in a business meeting,” Michael said.
Face to Face with Movie Stars
I had lunch with Chinese actress Gong Li about 15 years ago at the China Club. She was looking for an English tutor.
About 10 years ago I interviewed Jackie Chan for a piece I was writing for the South China Morning Post.
Now I've met Michael Wong. And finally I had the presence of mind to have my picture taken with him!
Pictured: Film Star and Director Michael Wong (above) shows off his all new Samsung Galaxy Tab 8.9 LTE, while Michael Taylor, Publisher of the Accidental Travel Writer, looks on.
For More on Michael Wong
Making his film debut in 1983, Michael Wong was quickly typecast as a naïve but tough outsider. He has appeared in dozens of films since then. His most recent movies include Nightfall and Glory Days, which were both released in 2012.