Craig Fong

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Craig Fong was born in Carnarvon, Western Australia. In this small country town with less than five thousand residents, Craig grew up in a somewhat isolated outback environment. His grandfather Clement, took Craig to the drive-in cinema to escape the house on hot summer nights and he was absolutely amazed by the art of storytelling through motion picture. Craig was a small, shy, withdrawn young boy who reluctantly pursued acting in junior high. Acting had somehow given Craig the confidence to read for a stage comedy and thus was first cast in the stage comedy ‘Custards Last Stand’. At fourteen Craig moved to Perth to continue his studies at Rossmoyne Senior High School but there were no drama classes, instead he picked up photography with the intention of eventually becoming a film director.

After high school he enrolled into the Central Institute of Technology located in Perth, majoring in film production and animation. During his three years he won Best Television Commercial and his actor Matt Thompson won Best Male Actor for a short film he made in 1991 at the FTI Awards in Fremantle. The following year he was nominated for Best Documentary at the same event.

His partner at the time, a prominent model introduced him to her agent and thus was cast in his first television commercial for Western Australian Tourism. Craig had his first chance to work with a real production company and his passion for acting was re-ignited. It was at this stage Craig left Perth in an orange 1977 VW Golf and drove to Sydney to pursue an acting career. He was an extra on ‘Thank God She Met Lizzie’, ‘Hart to Hart Down Under’ and was featured in a Crowded House music video, ‘Instinct’. From there he left for Singapore and modeled for Elite Singapore and then with Mannequin Studio.

His travels took him to Malaysia where his first real acting break came from a Hollywood movie ‘Entrapment’, where he spent three days standing next to Catherine Zeta-Jones as the right-hand-man of Maury Chaykin’s character. He did not have a large part in this movie. In fact, it was a very small one with a one-word line. In 1999 Craig was cast in his first lead role, an independent film ‘Spinning Gasing’, portraying a young musician Harry, the film's protagonist who is caught between culture, religion and love. ‘Spinning Gasing’ was later garnished with awards from the Hawaii International Film Festival, Slam-dunk Film Festival in Utah and the Cinefan Film Festival in Bombay.

Craig briefly returned to Singapore to work in mostly movies made for television with long time friend, director Kabir Bhatia. Together they made ‘On the Wings of Butterflies’ playing a Japanese soldier who falls in love with a local Chinese Singaporean girl during World War II and ’Full Circle’.

After two years in Singapore he returned to his home in Perth looking to do more theatre work and struck a great friendship with playwright John Aitken where he was cast as an Imperial Princess in ‘Imperial Façade’, a Russian Mongolian soldier in ‘Ships Pass Quietly’ and a doppelganger in ‘Lost is my Quiet’ where he was awarded Best Supporting Actor at the October 2007, 8th Annual Equity Guild Awards in Western Australia.

It was also the same year he played Bao Tang in the Australian feature film, ‘The Line’ with Andy McPhee, Peter Phelps, Christopher Elliott and John Flaus. A crime thriller, that takes an uncompromising journey into the world of police corruption. In one scene Craig had been gaffer taped to the seat of an old yellow Toyota Corolla in a junkyard by Andy McPhee and was left there for several hours while the cast and crew broke for lunch. As to not disturb the continuity as Andy had wrapped the tape around Craig’s head including his right eye unintentionally.

Craig was cast in ‘The Malay Chronicles’ in June 2009, Malaysia. Fong to play the role of Admiral Liu Yun (released in Malaysia as ‘Hikayat Merong Mahawangsa’) is an adventure feature film set against the backdrop of ancient Malay, Roman and Chinese civilizations. During shooting many of the extras had passed out from heat exhaustion as most of the fight scenes were shot in Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia under the blazing hot sun by the beach.

In August the same year he appeared as the love interest, Karl Vincent in the television series, ‘Wadi Unung’ with Eja and Intan Azura directed by Ahmad Raja Alluddin for Astro Prima. Filming taking place in Kedah, Malaysia and Perth, Australia. While post-production continued on ‘The Malay Chronicles’, in February 2010 shooting began on the WWII mini-series ‘Akinabalu’ based on the Japanese occupation of South-East Asia. Based on real events the Japanese soldiers take the prisoners-of-war on a death-march from Sandakan to Ranau, directed by Kabir Bhatia for Astro Citra. Fong was cast as the Japanese Leftenant Tanaka along side Dira Abu Zahar and Aaron Aziz.

Craig has worked on many European based productions, including ‘Liebe und Tod auf Java’ (‘Love and Death in Java’). Directed by Heidi Kranz. Screenplay by Christian Schmidt and produced by teamWorx Television & Film GmbH. The cast included, Muriel Baumeister, Francis Fulton-Smith, Julia Thurnau, Sönke Möhring and Gottfried John. Set in a tobacco plantation in Java during the 1920’s just before World War II had been declared and Nazi persecution had begun.

‘Verloren auf Borneo’, (‘Lost in Borneo’). A German made movie about Borneo’s endangered Orangutans, which in the film is highly threatened by deforestation. Starring Hannes Jaenicke, Mirjam Weichselbraun and Patrick Heyn.

Craig worked on ‘Fragrant Harbour’ ('Hafen der Düfte') with German actress Veronica Ferres who was also co-producer and acted with Russell Wong and Matthew Marsh. The story based on the novel by Harold Nebenza. Directed by Peter Gersina for teamWorx Television & Film GmbH.

In November 2011, Craig Fong was nominated for Best Supporting Actor for ‘The Malay Chronicles’ at Anugerah Skrin 2011 in Malaysia.

In 2013 Craig teamed up once again with writer and director Kabir Bhatia on ‘Crazy Baby’ (‘Gila Baby’). Produced by Filmscape and financed by Grand Brilliance.

February 2013, ‘Cuak’ produced by Garang Pictures directed by Tony Pietra Pohlsen with Tony Eusoff, Dawn Chong and Amelia Chen.

March 2013 – ‘Das Traumschiff’ which is Germany’s longing running television series filmed in and around Kuala Lumpur and Langkawi. Craig Fong playing the character Beto alongside actor Nick Wilder.

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