Is it true that Sammi has no fate to any major film awards? I hope not.


Sammi Cheng is a very successful Hong Kong singer that is always recognized as the ‘Cantopop Queen’. Venturing into entertainment industry at a very early age after winning third place in a local singing competition, Sammi has been enjoying fame and popularity all over Asia-Pacific from early 1990 till present. That’s over two decades and her fame never fades even at the time between 2005 to 2007 when she faced depression and had temporarily stay away from public eyes. From 2008 onwards, she came back much stronger with strengthened faith in Christianity. She is one of the guests in a recent TVB programme where a female host interviews a number of successful ‘best actress’. I am quite touched by what she expressed in the interview.

Let’s discuss more on her interesting and challenging adventures in film industry spanning for over two decades. It’s very typical for a Hong Kong singer to turn to acting to achieve wider success, and Sammi is not an exception. Her first film is ‘Best of the Best’ in 1992, and she is already immediately paired with Jacky Cheung, the ‘God of Songs’. She had also team up with many other popular artists (mostly male as on-screen partner) on films in following years like Ekin Cheng, Stephen Chow, Leon Lai, Anita Mui, Andy Lau, Richie Ren, Louis Koo, Sean Lau, Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Tony Leung Ka Fai, etc. Up to date, she had starred in over 20 Hong Kong films, of which several were big hit in box-office like ‘Summer Holiday’, ‘Needing You’, ‘Love on a Diet’ and most recently ‘Blind Detective’. Her most tough film must be the ‘Everlasting Regret’, a very serious and ‘choking’ film centered on a Shanghainese woman’s turbulent life.

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(Andy Lau and Sammi Cheng, the Chinese ‘golden box office couple’. Both look stunning despite the former is now over 50 and the latter is over 40 in age. Image source: http://english.cri.cn/mmsource/images/2013/05/20/b1311xtylxmangt2.jpg)

Her best partner in films must be none other than Andy Lau whom she had collaborated with for seven times. Andy Lau had always expressed publicly to the media that he praised Sammi’s brilliant acting skill and that he hopes for her to win best actress award very soon. Why did he stressed on this point? It’s because Sammi had been nominated in annual Hong Kong Film Awards in best actress category for six times (in 2000’s Needing You, 2001’s Wu Yen, Fighting for Love, Love on a Diet, 2005’s Everlasting Regret, 2012’s Romancing in Thin Air) but failed to win any. This really shocked most of the people, including myself. I always think that her performance had been very good in most of her films and should be deserving of this award long ago. And yet till now, not a single trophy on her hand. It is surprising that the people that made the decision on the awards had not seen or realized her potential and her fantastic level in acting.

To be exact, she had actually won a best actress award before from Hong Kong Film Critics Society Award previously for her performance in ‘Wu Yen’ as the titular character. But that is certainly not enough to honour her contribution and effort in film industry. One of the reasons she had lesser fate to film awards is that her films are always in romance comedy genre that stands little chance to shine in awards selection. However, I have to highlight that it is not easy too to act in that type of characters in such a natural and relaxing way as she does in her films. She nailed the characters as how each should be. I always enjoyed her films. Really wonderful and engaging. Even Johnnie To, a prolific film director that Sammi had always worked with had expressed full support for her to win best actress as soon as possible. He feels that he owes her this.

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(A shot of Sammi Cheng with Andy Lau in Blind Detective. Image source: http://www.scmp.com/sites/default/files/styles/980w/public/2013/07/02/handout_bd_flyer.jpg?itok=6iWeiroH)

Recently, Sammi again is praised for her outstanding performance in ‘Blind Detective’, a film released this year that combines violence, romance and also comedy. Eventhough generally the film did not stands out well enough, but her acting does. She is nominated in Taiwan’s 50th Golden Horse Awards in best actress category for this film. The awards presentation will be held by end of November and I do hope that she will win it. However, I see bigger chance for Zhang Ziyi in ‘The Grandmaster’,a much successful production this year that I didn’t watch. Zhang had recently won best actress at 10th Huading Awards based on this film too, hence higher chance for her. I’m worried that her nomination is just to fill in the empty slot which it is obviously shouldn’t be. It’s really should be the time to recognize Sammi’s acting level. I think she would be definitely nominated again on next year’s Hong Kong Film Awards. I’m really looking forward to her winning it eventhough everything is still too early to judge. But one thing for sure, Sammi had really done a great job not only in singing but also in acting. No one can question that.

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