Ali Lee’s Controversial Best Actress Win at Starhub TVB Awards

The annual Starhub TVB Awards took place in Singpaore this weekend, awarding Ali Lee (李佳芯) and Vincent Wong (王浩信) as Best Actress and Actor awards respectively for their performances in Legal Mavericks <踩過界>.

Ali Surprised by Best Actress Award

Considered a dark-horse in this year’s race, the Best Actress award came to Ali’s surprise.  Ali’s first words on stage before giving her thank-you speech was “Why?” She was unable to believe that she had won.

Nervous but thrilled to receive the honor, the 34-year-old actress expressed, “I lost from the get-go – I entered the industry at a later age and started later so I don’t have a lot of experience. But this award is your way of telling me that I should continue to work harder in becoming everyone’s favorite actress.” Having mainly played the homewrecker and mistress type roles in the past, Ali revealed that she never really liked any of her roles until encountering Legal Mavericks‘ Never.

Although a lot of viewers praised Ali’s role, Never, some were not big fans of the actress. Some viewers thought Ali was not ready for the award as she has only been with TVB for five years.

Vincent Wong: Winner In Everyone’s Eyes

Unlike Ali, whose win surprised a lot of fans, Vincent’s character as the stubborn and reserved Hope Man in Legal Mavericks won praise for his outstanding performance.

Presenting the award that night, Nancy Wu (胡定欣) recalled working with Vincent in Gun Metal Grey <刑警> when he was still a newcomer. Having witnessed his hard work over the years, Nancy was extremely touched when she handed him the award on stage.

Tearfully accepting his award, Vincent revealed that his grandfather disapproved his choice in becoming an actor so much that he ripped up his application form the first time. Vincent said his grandfather initially did not want to see him to become an extra on a show. After Vincent’s award, he is finally able to prove to his grandfather that he made the right choice.

Legal Mavericks also produced another winner that night – Owen Cheung (張振朗), who took won Best Supporting Actor. Unable to contain his tears when his name was announced, Owen cried the entire way as he was walking up to the stage, drawing in laughter from the crowd. Having played many minorroles for the past five years, Owen’s only form of recognition was that he resembled Chilam Cheung (張智霖) and Bosco Wong (黃宗澤). Holding his award up high that night, Owen proudly cried, “I am not a knockoff version of Chilam, I am not a knockoff version of Bosco, I am Owen Cheung!”

When Jacqueline Wong (黃心穎) was announced Best Supporting Actress, the usually cheerful  28-year-old teared up. Afterwards, when asked why she did not thank her rumored boyfriend, Kenneth Ma (馬國明) when she was giving her speech, Jacqueline smiled, “He was included in that list [of people I thanked].”

Samantha Ko (高海寧) and Matthew Ho (何廣沛) won the Most Improved Female and Most Improved Male TVB Artiste respectively.

To celebrate Starhub and TVB’s 25th collaboration, the awards show introduced a new category –TVB’s Most Favorite Male and Female Characters in the Past 25 years. Wayne Lai (黎耀祥), who won for his role as Chai Gau in Rosy Business <巾幗梟雄>, talked about his feelings and hardships on his road to becoming an actor and thanked everyone who supported him over the years.

Nancy Sit (薛家燕), who won for her role as the beloved Ho Yee in popular sitcom A Kindred Spirit <真情>, expressed her gratitude for having been given this opportunity. At the lowest point in her life where she was struggling to care for her three children, Nancy was given this role that ultimately shot her to stardom.

This year, The Unholy Alliance <同盟> won Best Drama, with each of the four main leads winning the My Favorite Male and Female Character awards. Winning his very first award in the 22 years he has been in the industry, Joel Chan (陳山聰) sobbed uncontrollably during his acceptance speech, bringing his co-star Elaine Yiu (姚子羚) to tears as well.

Other winners for the My Favorite Male and Female Character awards were Edwin Siu (蕭正楠), Raymond Cho (曹永廉), and Natalie Tong (唐詩詠).

Singapore’s Starhub TVB awards are usually seen an indicator towards which artistes will be winners at the upcoming TVB Anniversary Awards in Hong Kong.





This article is written by Su for

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  1. I don’t think it’s entirely fair to say that Ali Lee don’t deserve her Best Actress win. There are perhaps other deserving actresses (without a doubt, Nina Paw, but let’s not forget that the Starhub Awards is essentially a popularity contest) but credit where it’s due, Ali Lee did well as Never Wong. Her acting was natural and her character didn’t come across annoying or cringe-y.

    As for Vincent Wong, he definitely deserved his win. The TVB Anniversary Awards might yield different results but at least he’s got one. He might do well in Malaysia too if the anniversary dramas aren’t airing yet.

    1. @linvin8

      actually I think starhub is somewhat rigged if Mandy Wong is able to win an award. Just how popular is she really? anyways, that Fav Char award is pretty much a participation award, I didn’t mean to single out Mandy.

  2. Ali Wong is not a bad actress but she always have that really strange tone when she speaks like she’s trying to hold back or something… I can’t explain it. It makes all the characters she’s portraying sounds the same.

    Never Wong was more refreshing and enjoyable, but it wasn’t Best Actress worthy. However, I wouldn’t mind seeing her more in the future. She has the face that suits both nice & evil.

    P.S. that dress she was wearing is just too funny looking.

    1. @hongtran1965 Well compare to Jacqueline, Ali’s acting is not terrible. In fact, Jacqueline’s acting is quite similar of terrible acting…Ali got the potential and at least she is so pretty that I dont mind watching her on tv but Jacqueline on the other hand is quite on par with kevin’s girlfriend…in terms of acting skill and looks….

    1. @jimmyszeto I agree.. everyone’s going nuts about Ali but Jacqueline winning supporting is even more questionable. Her acting was not great, and her character was not memorable… this one is definitely the weirdest of all (ok, maybe on par with Samantha Ko winning Most Improved… what….)

      Side note – I also sometimes think of the Supporting awards to be more “prestigious” than the Lead awards because TVB has SO many supporting actors/actresses and most of them are amazing are only ever going to win in that category – that’s like the BA category for the people who are not as favorable or popular!

  3. I can understand why Ali isn’t popular with females but she can act and with the current crop of up and comers then she is up there with Tracy, and now Sisley has joined the group.

  4. I’m neither supportive nor opposed to Ali winning it. I quite like Ali, but can see why she’s not quite ready for TV Queen.. still lacking a bit of emotion. I have rooted her since her “mistress role” days though and was quite impressed when she actually broke out and became lead!

    On a different note, I find it so strange that HK viewers and tabloids and whatnot want their TV Kings/Queens having x number of years of experience under their belts. I’ve seen several comment sections where people are denouncing Ali because she got most improved last year, and now she’s best actress. Like I said, I can see why she’s not particularly ready for the award, but I don’t think her being new/not new has anything to do with it. I find that a lot of veterans are often much more supported over the young actors/actresses. Sure, veteran means they likely will put on a better performance, but why can’t a newbie win BA if they’re good? Many movie award shows, TV award shows etc. give high accolades to people with a variety of acting experience. Their resume shouldn’t overshadow the work they are currently putting out. I find it unfair when people try to justify why Ali doesn’t deserve to win based on the number of years she’s been in TVB. Who cares?!

    1. @melia880
      While it would take an exceptional performance to defeat Vincent in the real TVB Awards, the best actress is still very much up for grabs. Owen Cheung will also be big fav for support but that should be a very competitive section. Jacqueline has no chance in the female section and I hope veterans will be considered. Brian Tse was pretty good. He copied Chapman To’s famous Infernal Affairs character very well in Line Walker 2. It certainly isn’t an easy character to play.

      1. @jimmyszeto Agree with everything you said. I hope Vincent wins, he totally deserves it (although I’ve seen some people say he didn’t deserve it and Ruco should have won in Singapore for a fourth year in a row instead… what???). Low chance for both Ali and Jacqueline though.

  5. I’ve been waiting for this article for days…

    Guys. The most questionable award isn’t Ali’s . (Honestly, there’s been zero competition for Best Actress in a while. They can’t give it to Kristal or Nancy every time).
    The most questionable one was Jacqueline’s BSA. HOW ON EARTH did she beat Ko Ling or Koni Lui (both senior and better at acting) to it??? That series was not even good. I’d be less surprised if Ali won BSA as Rachel honestly.

    Anyhow, we can all start guessing the winners for Hong Kong! Would they really give BA to Nina Paw?
    I think Joel will win for My Favourite Male Character, but imo Ben Yuen was surprisingly better as Paradise in LW2 than in AFWFW.
    As usual, Best Supporting Male has the most competition: Owen, LLL, both from Legal Mavericks, and let’s not forget Lai Lok Yi as Hanson! haha. Anyone know when noms come out?

    1. @bubbles23 I agree – Jacqueline’s win is way more shocking. The girl just cannot act…Ali is a solid up-and-coming actress but I’m not sure that she deserved the win based on her character from Legal Mavericks. I actually think Ali fared better in her earlier antagonist roles, as they were more interesting. Excited to see her performance in My Ages Apart though!

      In general, there was weak female character development in most dramas this year. I feel that Elena Kong (Tiger Mom Blues) and Grace Wong (My Dearly Sinful Mind) are the most deserving so far.

      Based on performances so far this year, I do still hope that Vincent wins BA and Law Lok Lam snags BSA at the main awards this year. Although, it’s probably going to be slim chances 🙁

      What are your picks for the wins this year??

      1. @kaykay I agree. Grace’s role in My Dearly Sinful Mind was scary, sexy, and refreshing. Shame she was so underrated in that series, seems like everyone forgot about it.

    2. @bubbles23

      Yes…the most questionable win among the four major awards; BA & BSA (male & female) was definitely Jacqueline’s BSA. The TVB Starhub (Singapore) and Star Awards (Malaysia) are actually more of popularity awards. But still, I don’t see Jacqueline as so popular that she could be the most favourite supporting actress.

      Anyway, i don’t think both Ali Lee & Jacqueline Wong (for sure) will win again in the next TVB Star Awards Malaysia and TVB Anniversary Awards. While I’m fine with Ali’s performance thus far, she definitely has yet to reach the TV Queen level. The way she express her dialogues is already something she needs to improve on; just like what @iciel said…she speaks like she’s trying to hold back or something…LOL

      Btw, i think it’s fine if Kristal is awarded the Best Actress for her performance in Destination Nowhere because she really did well in that series. Even if Kristal wins again this time, it’s only her 2nd BA awards (will be on par with Nancy)…it’s not too much for her since i do think that both Nancy and Kristal are of the same level.

  6. vincent wong is the worst tv king i have seen in the history of tvb award show. they really lacks good leading actors/ actresses in hk nowadays.

    1. @kolo
      You are talking bs. The worst TV king was Kevin Cheng for Under The Canopy of Love and then Ruco last year for Fist Within Four Walls. Oh yeh, you was the one that said Vincent’s blind lawyer role was tailor made for him….

      1. @jimmyszeto You are right! Kevin Cheng winning the 2006 Best Actor was totally BS…in my opinion, Steven Ma or Wong Hei or someone else other than Kevin should have won it….

  7. In my opinion, Ali is the most deserving winner for Most Favourite Female Character for STARHUB. First of all, she’s popular. Her role as Never is quite impressing and memorable. It’s just that her role as Never is not as comprehensive and not the main female lead role. I believe Sisley is the main female lead role and Never’s character was re-written due to Ali’s rising popularity last year, please correct me if I’m wrong.

    So far in this year, Ali stands out compared to others; Nina and Kristal are deserving for BA in HK awards! I still root for Ali to win My Most Favourite Female Actress in HK just like how Grace did it last year.

    As for the most questionable for Best Actress so far was Nancy when she first won. Her performance in Ghost of Relatively is so mediocre. Liza and Linda should have won that year instead but past is past. However, she totally deserve it in the following year.

  8. Vincent hands down! Well deserved. Ali, for that role, best actress, questionable… I think it’s too early for her.

    1. @ricky721
      Problem is that Ali’s performance is amongst the best in the year so far. Can only beat what’s in front of her. However there are many more series to come this year. The award is very much up for grabs…

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