Nancy Kwan


Actor
Nancy Kwan

About

Also Known As
Ka Shin Kwan
Birth Place
Hong Kong
Born
May 19, 1939

Biography

As a young girl growing up in postwar Hong Kong, Nancy Kwan was physically active. She was a bit of a tomboy and excelled at sports and Tai Chi. At age 12, she was sent to England to study ballet; she went on to dance in productions of "Swan Lake" and "Sleeping Beauty" and eventually to earn her teaching certificate. One day, at the age of 18, when she was visiting her home country for s...

Photos & Videos

Biography

As a young girl growing up in postwar Hong Kong, Nancy Kwan was physically active. She was a bit of a tomboy and excelled at sports and Tai Chi. At age 12, she was sent to England to study ballet; she went on to dance in productions of "Swan Lake" and "Sleeping Beauty" and eventually to earn her teaching certificate. One day, at the age of 18, when she was visiting her home country for summer holidays, she had a big break. Director Ray Stark was searching for a Chinese actress to play the title character in his upcoming film, an adaptation of the Richard Mason novel "The World of Suzie Wong," the story of a romance between a struggling American artist and the daughter of a wealthy Chinese businessman, set in Hong Kong. Kwan was chosen out of 500 applicants, despite her lack of acting experience. Her success in that part immediately opened the door to further opportunities, and the next year she was putting her dancing skills to work in the lead role of the film adaptation of the Rodgers and Hammerstein Broadway hit "Flower Drum Song," another interracial romance, set in San Francisco. In the 1980s, Kwan made a push into television where she appeared on many of the staples of the day such as "The A-Team" and "Fantasy Island." She eventually started her own commercial production company and is now mostly widely recognized for her role in infomercials for the beauty product Pearl Cream.

Life Events

Photo Collections

Flower Drum Song - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for Flower Drum Song (1961), starring Nancy Kwan. One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.
The World of Suzie Wong - Movie Poster
Here is the American one-sheet movie poster for Five Miles to Midnight (1961), starring Nancy Kwan and William Holden. One-sheets measured 27x41 inches, and were the poster style most commonly used in theaters.

Videos

Movie Clip

Flower Drum Song (1961) - Such Fun Going Steady James Shigeta (as Wang Ta) and Nancy Kwan (as showgirl Linda) discuss their immediate future in a San Francisco Chinatown cafe in director Henry Koster's Flower Drum Song, 1961, from the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical.
Flower Drum Song (1961) - I Enjoy Being a Girl Nancy Kwan (as Chinese-American showgirl Linda) strikes dozens of Western poses in a dazzling display by designer Irene, in the saucy Rodgers & Hammerstein number (dubbed by top vocalist Betty Jane "BJ" Baker, the former Mrs. Mickey Rooney), in Flower Drum Song, 1961.
Wild Affair, The (1963) - I Had My Eye On Frankenstein From producer Ray Stark, working in the U-K with his own Seven Arts firm, clever end of the credits introduces his discovery Nancy Kwan as Marjorie, Bessie Love her mom and Donald Churchill as her hung-over fiancè, in the unsuccessful but edgy comedy The Wild Affair, 1963, from writer-director John Krish.
Wild Affair, The (1963) - First Class Sex Maniac At her London cosmetics firm, conflicted Margie (Nancy Kwan), on the eve of her wedding and the office Christmas party, greets friend Mavis (Betty Marsden), boss Terry-Thomas (in maybe his only picture with no mustache!), nasty under-boss Tiny (Paul Whitsun-Jones) and gofer Bone (Bernard Adams), in The Wild Affair, 1963.
Wild Affair, The (1963) - The Vampire Look Lecher-ey cosmetics firm boss Deane (Terry-Thomas with NO mustache!), fussy stylist Quentin (Victor Spinetti) and visiting sales ace Craig (Jimmy Logan) all show sudden interest in staffer Marjorie (Nancy Kwan), her wedding and the Christmas party imminent, and whose mirror-based alter-ego happens to match the hot new look, in The Wild Affair, 1963.

Promo

Bibliography