Before I know it, I had been in the film and television business for over 60 years. It’s a business I still love. It’s my profession, my only profession. Sweet and bitter, lots of worthwhile memories.
Directing is very different from acting and I was lucky enough to be involved in both. Directing was difficult, tiring, frustrating, petty and saddening, but the satisfaction and sense of accomplishment in the end were also very intense. It’s a role that shoulders the expectations of the entire crew, the fortunes of a huge sum of money and the summation of every body’s hard work. Directing is both art and responsibility. The Fantastic Spot in China, which I directed, received praise when it was released; all the hard work was worth it.
The greatest joy in life is doing what one likes and realizing self worth. I thank the heavens for giving me this chance and this life-long persistence.
Born in Beijing in 1931, Chang Tseng went to school in Shanghai and worked as a mechanic. He came to Hong Kong in 1948, joining Mandarin film company Great Wall Pictures as actor, appearing in over 50 films, in leading roles or as key characters. He had also acted in Cantonese films, at Great Wall’s sister organization Sun Luen as well as the Chinese company Pearl River Film Studio.
Chang began doubling as assistant director in 1960, working on a number of films. His first directorial effort is Enchanting Whirlpools (1969, co-directed with Wu Ching-ping), later co-directing Red Azalea (1970) with Huang Yu. Great Wall, a so-called left wing company, was plunged into years of almost inactive state during the Cultural Revolution, and Chang acted in only two films during that period.
His career picked up again after the Cultural Revolution, codirecting with Wu Ching-ping the Sun Luen production The Wrath of Foetus (1977) and, with Sun Hua, the documentary The Fantastic Spot in China (1979). He followed the latter with two more documentaries about fanciful phenomena in China, Xin Jiang ‘Yar-Ck-See (1981) and The National Minority Sports Games of China (1983), making a name for himself.
Chang joined Rediffusion TV in 1979, acting in television dramas and staying on through the station’s evolution into ATV in the 1980s. In addition to acting and directing, the multi-talented Chang also sang and danced, performing the theme song of The Golden Eagle (1964) and dancing a ballet in Teenager Holiday (1959). He is also author of several books.
After immigrating to Vancouver, Canada, in 1993, he had appeared in over 20 Canadian films and television dramas. In 2006, he won Best Performance in a Short Drama in the Leo Awards of British Columbia, Canada, for his role in InConvenience (2005). In 2009, he also won the Best Supporting Actor in the same award for his role in Dim Sum Funeral. He also acted in Chinese stage plays in Vancouver.
|Year||Chinese name||English name||Directors|
||The National Minority Sports Games of China|
||Xin Jiang 'Yar-Ck-See|
||The Fantastic Spots of China||SUEN Wah|
||The Fantastic Spots in China||SUEN Wah|
||The Wrath of Foetus|
||Red Azalea||HUANG Yu|