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John Lone

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Chinese name
尊龍 (traditional)

Years active

Chinese name
尊龙 (simplified)

John Lone

Birth name
Ng Kwok-leung (吳國良)



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October 13, 1952 (age 71) Hong Kong (

Nina Savino (m. 1972–1979)

Rabbit Ears Treasury of World Tales: Library Edition

Obie Award for Performance

Similar People
Bernardo Bertolucci, Joan Chen, Puyi, Max von Sydow, Denzel Washington

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John Lone (Chinese: 尊龍; pinyin: Zūn Lóng; born October 13, 1952) is a Hong Kong-born American actor. Lone has played roles as diverse as a caveman in Iceman (1984), Puyi in The Last Emperor (1987), and an apparently female opera performer in M. Butterfly (1993).


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John lone

Personal life

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Lone was born in October 1952 as Ng Kwok-leung (Chinese: 吳國良; pinyin: Wú Guóliáng) in Hong Kong. He was raised in an orphanage and later adopted by a Shanghainese woman. He began training in Beijing opera at Hong Kong's Chiu Chiu Academy. It was here, at the age of ten, where he was given the name "Johnny". He later chose the name Lone to reflect the fact that he was an orphan and for its similarity to Leung, part of his given name.

John Lone John Lone Wikipedia the free encyclopedia

Sponsored by an American family, he left the Beijing opera troupe and emigrated to Los Angeles, California. In the United States, he married fellow Santa Ana Community College student Nina Savino in 1972, and gained American citizenship. The couple divorced in 1979. Lone also continued his performing arts studies at American Academy of Dramatic Arts in Pasadena, California. Eventually, he would move to New York City, in order to pursue a career on stage.


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Lone struggled for a time until the actor Mako recognized his talent and suggested him for a role in David Henry Hwang's first play F.O.B. From his performance in this play, Lone received an Obie Award. While in New York City he was discovered by the talent agent Jadin Wong, who helped him to launch his career. Wong subsequently discovered Joan Chen, Bai Ling and Lucy Liu.

His first major role in films was as the title character in Iceman. He is probably best known for his portrayal of Puyi in The Last Emperor and crime boss Joey Tai in Year of the Dragon in the mid-1980s, as well as an opera performer playing female roles in M. Butterfly (with Jeremy Irons). Further international film appearances included the role of corrupt Hong Kong cop Ricky Tan in Rush Hour 2. In the 1995 film The Hunted he played dangerous assassin Kinjo alongside Christopher Lambert.

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Despite his Hollywood fame, he chose to further his career in the Asian market. He played the Qianlong Emperor, another Chinese emperor, in the 30-episode television drama series Qianlong and the Fragrant Concubine (乾隆与香妃) in 2004. His last film appearance was in War and, as of 2017, he has not been involved in any projects.

Award nominations

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  • Golden Globe Awards
  • 1986 Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture / Year of the Dragon
  • 1988 Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama / The Last Emperor
  • Independent Spirit Awards
  • 1989 Best Supporting Male / The Moderns

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    John Lone Wikipedia