Modest Hong Kong actor pledges to donate wealth to charity after he dies
Agence France-Presse in Hong Kong
The Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon actor Chow Yun-fat has said he will donate his fortune to charity after he dies.
Also known to western audiences for the Oscar-winning Pirates of the Caribbean and the gangster film A Better Tomorrow, Chow has endeared himself to fans in recent years with his modest lifestyle.
The multimillionaire Chow joined the Forbes list of the highest-paid actors in the world for the first time in 2015, sharing 24th place with Russell Crowe.
Yet in wealthy Hong Kong, he can be spotted taking public transport and lining up for tickets to watch his own movie.
Now, he has pledged to give away his fortune of a reported HK$5.6bn (£570m).
“This money isn’t something you possess for ever. When you’re gone one day, you have to leave it to others to use it,” he told South Korea’s Munhwa Broadcasting Corporation.
“You can’t bring the money in your bank account with you after you die,” he said, adding that his wife “strongly supports” his decision.
Hong Kong’s wealth gap was at its widest last year for nearly half a century, fuelling discontent as the former British colony marked two decades under Chinese rule.
Sky-high prices and the cost of living outstrip many ordinary residents’ salaries, with apartments becoming increasingly cramped and generations of families forced to share.
Meanwhile, the city’s mega-rich continue their displays of extreme wealth and pursuit of status symbols.
Chow, affectionately nicknamed “Brother Fat” in Hong Kong, has won praise for taking an opposite tack.
His wife, Jasmine Tan, has previously described how her husband often eats at street stalls and only gave up his beloved Nokia flip phone when it died after years of use.