Three of JOHN LONE's three recent films testify to the scope and diversity of his talent. In David Cronenberg's film adaptation of the Broadway hit M BUTTERFLY, Lone starred in the title role as the captivating muse who seduces and coerces a French diplomat, played by Jeremy Irons into duplicity. In the 1994 release, THE SHADOW, Lone portrayed Alec Baldwin's nemesis, Shiwan Khan, the last warrior descendent of Genghis Khan, who would stop at nothing to gain world domination, much as the Shadow would do everything in his power to prevent him. In Jonathan Lawton's 1995 release of THE HUNTED, Lone starred as a ninja in a haunting story of revenge and pursuit set in contemporary Japan.
Lone catapulted to international attention with the title role in Bernardo Bertolucci's Oscar-winning THE LAST EMPEROR. With a series of starring roles in feature films and two Golden Globe nominations, Lone's artistry as an actor has been highly regarded by critics and audiences alike.
Lone made his theatrical film debut portraying a prehistoric man brought back to life in Fred Schepisi's ICEMAN. He next played a suave and dangerous Chinese underworld kingpin in Michael Cimino's crime drama THE YEAR OF THE DRAGON. His subsequent roles include that of an enigmatic businessman/art collector living among expatriates in 1920's Paris, in Alan Rudolph's THE MODERNS, and a Balinese dancer involved in an interracial love affair (with Wendy Hughes) in Philip Noyce's ECHOES OF PARADISE. Lone was also responsible in helping to assemble an international creative team for the independent feature films, SHADOW OF CHINA and SHANGHAI 1920.
Lone was born in Hong Kong and became orphaned early on. He was sent, at an early age, to live with a monastic like Beijing Opera company. Lone passed up the offer of a ten year contract to be groomed as a star for the Hong Kong cinema establishment and instead chose to pursue his own brand of artistic expression. This determination and a growing interest in Western culture led him to the United States.
Lone's initial American success was in David Henry Hwang's play "FOB" at Joseph Papp's Public Theatre in New York. His performance earned him an Obie Award and the serious attention of the New York theater world. Hwang wrote his next play, "The Dance and the Railroad," specifically for Lone. In this critically heralded production, Lone not only played the lead but also served as director, choreographer and composer. After a successful theatrical run, his production was showcased on television as part of the New York Shakespeare Festival/ABC Arts Productions. Lone made his directorial debut with the PBS/American Playhouse production of "Paper Angels," based on a play that he had directed for the New York stage.
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