Andy Lau Tak-wah (刘德华, born 27 September 1961) is a Hong Kong actor, singer and film producer. He has been one of Hong Kong’s most commercially successful film actors since the mid-1980s, performing in more than 160 films while maintaining a successful singing career at the same time. In the 1990s, Lau was branded by the media as one of the Four Heavenly Kings of Cantopop.
Lau was entered into the Guinness World Records for the “Most Awards Won by a Cantopop Male Artist”. By April 2000, he had already won a total unprecedented 292 awards. In 2005, Lau was awarded “No.1 Box office Actor 1985–2005” of Hong Kong, yielding a total box office of HK$1,733,275,816 for shooting 108 films in the past 20 years.
In 1981, Lau signed up for the artist training program offered by TVB, which is where his acting career began. In the late 80s, Lau left TVB due to contract problems. TVB wanted to bind him to an exclusive five-year contract which Lau refused to sign, so TVB blacklisted him. He then focused on his film career.
From Jade Solid Gold Top 10 Awards, he has won the “Most Popular Hong Kong Male Artist” award 7 times and the “Asia Pacific Most Popular Hong Kong Male Artist” award 15 times. He also entered into Guinness World Records for “Most Awards Won by a Cantopop Male Artist”. By April 2000, he had already won a total unprecedented 292 awards.
Andy Lau was born in Tai Po, Hong Kong. A son of a fireman (劉禮), as a young boy Lau had to fetch water for his family up to eight times a day because their house was not equipped with plumbing. He later graduated from a Band One secondary school, Ho Lap College in San Po Kong, Kowloon. He was named as Lau Fook-Wing (劉福榮) during his academic years. He also practices Chinese calligraphy. Lau converted to Buddhism in the 1980s. He was raised in a nominally Buddhist household and is now a follower of the Lingyan Mountain Temple in Taiwan.
In 2008, Lau married Malaysian Chinese Carol Chu after 24 years of speculation over their relationship. The couple were married in Las Vegas. On 9 May 2012, Chu gave birth to his first child, a daughter named Hanna.
Lau has been noted for his active involvement in charity works throughout his 30 years of showbiz career and was honoured “Justice of Peace” by the Hong Kong SAR government in 2008.