Born Chang Fu-Sheng to a wealthy family on October 20th, 1954, in Hong Kong. His English adopted name was Alexander. He was the ninth of 11 siblings. He was considered his father's favorite. Unlike the rest of his family, he showed little interest in academic and had no desire to try his hand in business. He left school after only 2 years of secondary education and had showed a keen interest in Kung Fu. At 16, he joined the Shaw-TVB training center. He was the among the 45 graduates who graduated as the 1st class of the Shaw-TVB training center on Sept 28, 1972. After his stint at training school, Fu Sheng got his start at Shaw Brothers at 17. He was discovered by legendary director, Chang Cheh and trained for 6 months under the martial tutelage of legendary director and Martial Arts Master, Lau Kar-Leung. Some of his early appearances in film were Man of Iron (1972), Young People (1972), The 14 Amazons (1972). He got his 1st big role with the 1973 film, Police Force. He next appeared in Chang Cheh's youth action drama, Friends in 1974 co-starring David Chiang and Lily Li. He won the 'Best Young Newcomer' award at the 20th Annual Asian Film Festival for his performance. He joined Chang Cheh in Taiwan and made true and classic kung fu films such as Men From The Monastery (1974), Heroes Two (1973), Shaolin Temple and Shaolin Avengers (both 1976). He teamed up with legend Chun-Kuan Chi in the 1st of many films starting with Shaolin Martial Arts (1974). In the films Men From The Monastery, Heroes Two, Shaolin Temple, Shaolin Avengers, Fu Sheng played a role that he would become universally synonymous with--that of famed Chinese folk hero, Fang Shi-Yu. Fu Sheng was a star, but he rose to true super and mega status with Disciples of Shaolin (1975). Disciples of Shaolin (1975) is arguably the finest and greatest acting performance of of his career. He met Jenny Tseng, who was a popular singer who toured around the world and lent her voice to Chinese movies and television programs, in 1975 on the set of Boxer Rebellion. They fell quickly in love and married on December 4th, 1976. Fu Sheng would continue to rise to mega-star status in Asia and gained international stardom with the popular and classic movie, Chinatown Kid (1977) (1977). With his star on rise, he suffered two significant setbacks, both in September, giving the title, "The Black Septembers". On September 17th, 1978, he complained about being dizzy while shooting on the set of Sun Chung's Deadly Breaking Sword (1979). He fell backwards 8 feet in height with his head crashing through an urn, almost breaking his neck. It caused a serious concussion in his skull with internal bleeding. He wore a neck brace for a couple of months. He suffered permanent dizziness, poor diction, slurred speech and vision problems. The second accident occurred in September 19th, 1979 during the filming of Heroes Shed No Tears, his right leg was shattered when the harness holding him up broke sending him crashing to the hard floor. He had to undergo another procedure as the bone didn't set properly while he was recuperating from the first operation and a special contraption was put in place to keep him still. He was out of work for the of six months. Due to his injuries happening in September, he proclaimed to no longer film in the month of September for the rest of his career. At the time, he moved into a house once owned by the late Bruce Lee and known for it's negative feng shui. He made his comeback in 1981 with the classic and funny The Treasure Hunters (1981), a film he made with his brother, Chang Chan-Peng. His career was back on track and he kept on rising. He left his longtime director Chang Cheh, who he made a total of 23 films with. He became a actual student of martial arts master, Lau Kar-Leung, who was becoming a superstar director in his own way. Fu Sheng was filming the all time classic from Lau Kar-Leung, The Eight Diagram Pole Fighter, when tragedy struck. July 7, 1983 Fu Sheng was returning to his home after dinner out at Clearwater Bay Country Club around 10pm. He was a passenger in his Porsche 911 Targa that was driven by his older brother, Chang Zheng Sheng. His brother took one of the winding curves on Clearwater Bay Road too fast and hit a cement barrier around 10:30pm. Fu Sheng's older brother suffered injuries, but Fu Sheng himself suffered a collapsed chest and severe wounds in the abdomen with unstoppable bleeding. He was rushed to the hospital. The doctors tried revive him by trying to get blood back into his body through transfusion but that was unsuccessful because he kept on losing more blood. The horrible realization set in that surgery was going to be impossible because Fu Sheng also had a broken back. After 5 hours in agony, at 3:43am, Shaw's and Asia's brightest movie star had died. He was only 28 years old. His funeral took place on Thursday, July 14th, 1983. His death was celebrated with a state honors funeral. The day of his death, the Hong Kong television programming stopped and showed chain pictures of his life and career. Over 2,000 actors and 30,000 people attended. The amount of attenders and spectators rivaled that of Bruce Lee's funeral a decade earlier. His funeral was organized by the Shaw Brothers committee. His remains were cremated. Fu Sheng left a long lasting legacy in the kung fu film history. With his mischievous good looks, versatility, amazing acting ability and agility, he quickly became a favorite of martial arts fans and luminaries. Fu Sheng's film work is still revered in Hong Kong and he has strong cult following among kung fu fans around the world. Considered Hong Kong's best loved actors and one Shaw Studios best actors ever, Fu Sheng left a wealth of entertainment for all to enjoy. He will always be one of the cinema's most treasured personalities and bonafide legend in kung fu film history. His films and legacy lives on.
- Chiang Hsiao Yu(as Alexander Fu Sheng)
- Na Cha
- Fang Shih Yu
- Fang Shih Yu
Contribute to this page
Suggest an edit or add missing content
More to explore
How much have you seen?
Keep track of how much of Sheng Fu’s work you have seen. Go to your list.