Tuesday, November 27th, 2007
… Paulyn Sun Kai-Kwan (aka Pauline Suen aka Alien Sun)?
If you were a fan of mid-1990s Hong Kong cinema, you will undoubtedly recognize Paulyn Sun Kai-Kwan (孫佳君). After entering into the consciousness of HK movie fans and moviemakers with her role in the 1995 Stephen Chow Sing-Chi film SIXTY MILLION DOLLAR MAN, Sun had a solid three-year run as a leading lady that saw her star in middling films like: MR. MUMBLE, LOVE AND SEX AMONG THE RUINS and BANANA CLUB (not to be confused with TOP BANANA CLUB). When money for middling films dried up as a result of the Handover and the Asian economic crisis, Sun took on titillation roles as a maneater, literally, in THE UNTOLD STORY 2 and as “not Teresa Chiang Siu-Wai (the former Mrs. Kenny Bee)” in the Wong Jing-produced LOVE AND SEX IN THE EASTERN HOLLYWOOD.
While the aforementioned roles suggest that the years following her run as a B-level “It Girl” consisted entirely of lowlights, there were some highlights. Although she lost to Maggie Cheung Man-Yuk (THE SOONG SISTERS), Sun’s work in the 1997 film ISLAND OF GREED was recognized by a Best Actress award nomination at the 17th Hong Kong Film Awards. In 2000, Sun had a “heard but not seen” role as the cheating wife of Tony Leung Chiu-Wai’s Chow Mo-Wan character in Wong Kar-Wai’s masterpiece IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE. She followed that up with a provocative role in Takashi Miike’s notorious ICHI THE KILLER.
After making the Japanese film in 2001, Sun worked sparingly. She did some television, some beauty product ads, had a supporting role in EVERY DOG HAS ITS DATE and lead roles in three films — BLESS THIS CHILD, FU BO and A WEDDING OR A FUNERAL — that essentially went straight-to-video. She has not appeared in anything since 2004.
What happened to Paulyn Sun Kai-Kwan in the years since her last appearance? According to an article in a March 2005 edition of East Weekly, Sun is now married and the mother of a son. In February 2005, East Weekly reporters spotted Sun and her husband eating and shopping in and around Tai Koo Shing. Reportedly, Sun’s husband, Mr. Chan, is a Mainland-based millionaire businessman in his 40s. Approached by East Weekly reporters who asked where she has been since 2004, Sun revealed: “I’ve gotten married. I even gave birth to a son. We didn’t marry in Hong Kong. About my husband, I won’t say too much. He’s not involved in the entertainment circle.”
Sun, who appeared about ten pounds heavier than she was during her entertainment circle heyday, was then asked about her future in the business. Sun: “Let’s just say that I won’t be making any more movies.”
The marriage puts an end to Sun’s somewhat tumultuous single life. As she received her break by appearing in a Stephen Chow Sing-Chi movie, there were, naturally, rumours that she was involved with Chow. There were also rumours linking her to Jimmy Wong Ka-Lok (a model/actor whose main claim to fame is that he had a four-year long relationship with Rosamund Kwan Chi-Lam). Those rumours, however, paled to tales of a relationship with former billionaire business tycoon Louis Law Siu-Fai. In March 2002, an edition of East Weekly published photos exposing Sun as one of Law’s “kept women”. The article claimed that Sun was one of many HK female celebrities that Law “kept” by paying upwards of HK$500,000 a month. In addition to Sun, East Weekly alleged that Anita Yuen Wing-Yi, Carina Lau Ka-Ling, Teresa Mak Ka-Kei and Maggie Q — among others — were actresses that were “kept” by Law at one point or another.
Law, a billionaire real estate mogul in the early-1990s, was hit hard by the Asian economic crisis of the late-1990s. He incurred a heavy debt and attempted to commit suicide in December 2000. In January 2005, he was arrested on drug charges in Macau. Earlier this year, he was sentenced to two years in jail on those charges and fined 10,000 Macanse pacatas.
RECOMMENDATIONS: If you want to check out some of Paulyn Sun’s work, I would recommend starting with MR. MUBMLE and BANANA CLUB. MR. MUMBLE is based on the Japanese manga CITY HUNTER. Besides Sun, the film stars the likeable Michael Chow Man-Kin, hot babe Francoise Yip Fong-Wah and the always delightful Jessica Suen (aka Jessica Hester Hsuan). Despite having a lower budget and less star power, I thought MR. MUMBLE was more enjoyable and more fun than CITY HUNTER (Jackie Chan, Chingmy Yau Suk-Ching, Joey Wong Tso-Yin).
BANANA CLUB is a run-of-the-mill three boys/three girls romantic comedy but the charming boys (Michael Chow Man-Kin, Simon Lui Yu-Yeung, Edmond Leung Hon-Man) and charming girls (Paulyn Sun, Halina Tam Siu-Wan, Amanda Lee Wai-Man) make it worthwhile if you like that sort of thing.
If you want to check out Sun’s work while seeing a “good” movie then THE GOLDEN GIRLS and LOVE AND SEX AMONG THE RUINS are your best bets. There are also various editions of IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE that feature scenes that Sun appears in but were cut out of the theatrical release of the film.
http://img.ppzy.net//desk/renwu/gang/yan/1109148386.jpg (1280×1024 wallpaper of Paulyn Sun featuring a photo from a beauty ad)
MOVING FORWARD: No, no, this isn’t the section of the post where I do an ad for Toyota (though if Toyota wants to pay me a boatload of money for mentioning them here, I wouldn’t object). This is the section where I talk about the content of this blog in the short term. As I said in my last post, my HK entertainment database is badly out of date. Before last week, if you said “eye in the sky” to me, I would think “Alan Parsons Project” and not the film starring Tony Leung Ka-Fai and Simon Yam Tat-Wah. Consequently, for the next little while, this is going to be a little bit of a chat blog. I’ll talk about some of the HK-related stuff I’ve seen recently and see what you guys thought about them. Depending on how this post is received, I may do a few more “whatever happened to …” articles. We’ll see.
Eventually, I hope — in some fashion — to return to doing entertainment news. I just have to get my HK entertainment database updated. Right now, I’m learning about the rise of former Cookies member Stephy Tang Lai-Yan. Unlike Kozo, I am not as bemused by her success because I never doubt the power of Tang.
IN CLOSING … a few words about my e-mail situation. My Summer of Sloth included neglecting the e-mail account I set up for The House Where Words Gather. As a result, it has now turned into a spam nest. If you sent me an e-mail any time from the end of June to the beginning of November, it’s probably lost in the mess. Sorry. I’m looking into setting up another account. When I get the new account established, I promise to be much more diligent about e-mail. In the meantime, please use the blog’s comment box to correspond with me.
Until next time …
IMAGE CREDITS: East Weekly Magazine (Paulyn Sun and her husband, Paulyn Sun and Louis Law), Toyota (Toyota ad bug)