Yang Chi-yao, born in 1921, founded Hai Hua Cinema Co. in Hong Kong in 1971, which focused on producing films in Hong Kong and Taiwan. The company’s first production was the martial arts film The Hero (1971), starring Jimmy Wang Yu. Hai Hua. produced mainly action films, including Land of the Brave (1973), directed by Stanley Siu, and The Shaolin Invincibles (1977), directed by Hou Tseng. The company also produced the melodrama film The Story of Green House (1978), directed by Sung Tsun-shou. Yang made his directorial debut in 1978 with Bruce Lee in New Guinea, starring Ho Chung-tao (alias Bruce Li).
In 1979, the Ministry of Culture of the People’s Republic of China formed the China Film Co-Production Corporation (CFCC) to overseecollaborations foreign and Chinese companies. Yang directed his first Mainland production in 1980, Real Kung Fu of Shaolin, an action film set in the Republican era in China, which was co-produced with Fujian Film Studio. Filmed in Yang’s home province of Fujian in and around the Shaolin Temple in Quanzhou, it was the first independent Hong Kong company to film on location in Mainland China, predating Li Han-hsiang’s celebrated Burning of the Imperial Place (1983). However, the low-budget film featured the unknown Mainland martial artist Gary Siu (alias Sing Lung) and was not released until 1984. In 1981, Yang made another Mainland film, Out of Danger (a.k.a Rescued from Desperation), also shot in Quanzhou, the release of which was again delayed until 1985. Neither films were released in Hong Kong or Taiwan.
In 1982, when the Cheung Sing-yim-directed Shaolin Temple (1982) enjoyed widespread popularity in Hong Kong and Mainland China, Yang went to Shaolin Temple to make the martial arts film Shaolin Brothers (1983), starring the lead actress of Shaolin Temple, Ding Nan, which became the second martial arts film to be released in China.
In 1988, Yang collaborated with Tibet Television on a large-scale historical epic, The King Songtsan Ganbu (1988, co-directed with Luosang Ciren, Pubu Ciren, Danzeng and Leung Ming-wah.) In 1989, he directed The Three Kingdoms, a co-production with Beijing Film Studio.
Yang passed away in 1995 .
|Year||Chinese name||English name||Directors|
||The Three Kingdoms|
||The King Songtsan Ganbu||LEUNG Ming Wah|
||Out of Danger|
||Real Kung Fu of Shaolin|
||Bruce Lee in New Guinea||KONG Hung Joseph|