Anthony Wong is Looking for Father, Who Left the Family 52 Years Ago

Above: Anthony Wong released a photo of his father, who walked out of his life 52 years ago.

When Anthony Wong (黃秋生) was only four years old, his father left behind Anthony and his mother. In a recent interview with BBC, the 56-year-old Best Actor opened up about his childhood and how his father’s absence left a scar in his life. Not seeing his father for the last 52 years, Anthony yearned to find him and even posted his father’s photo on Facebook.

Anthony was born as Anthony William Perry, and his father’s name was Federick William Perry. His father was a government official who worked in Hong Kong under British rule. After his father stepped out of his life, Anthony was raised by his mother in Hong Kong.

Struggled with Self Identity

Due to his mixed looks, Anthony was teased mercilessly and bullied by his classmates in school. He said, “They thought I was a freak.” Growing up in the 1970s in Hong Kong, Anthony struggled with his self identity as a child. He felt he was neither Chinese nor British.

When he was 12 years old, Anthony became ill and required surgery. Anthony’s mother called his father, who was in Australia at the time. But his father made sure that the long-distance call was to be paid by Anthony’s mother first before he picked up the call. This was the last time the family contacted his father.

His father’s abandonment left Anthony with a sense of insecurity while growing up. Anthony recalled how he tried to compensate his deep sense of hurt, “As a child, I had to protect myself. So I wrapped myself in my own imagination.” It was Anthony’s strong imagination skills that eventually led him to become an actor.

However, Anthony’s looks limited the roles he was offered in his early acting career. Joining ATV in 1982, he filmed a horror series. “After joining the television station, there were not a lot of roles suitable for me. I played villian roles. My [appearance] was often a restriction.”

Although finding success in the film industry later and winning various acting accolades, Anthony continued to struggle with own identity and questioned, “What am I?” In 1997, when he was 36 years old, Anthony decided to go to England to study for one year and find his roots. But he did not find any traces of his father nor his paternal family.f

Search for His Father

Last year, Anthony posted a family photo of his father and mother on Facebook. In the photo, Anthony was just a newborn baby. With the help of fans, Anthony hoped to locate the whereabouts of his father, whom he has not seen in 52 years.

“At the time, I thought the Internet is so powerful. If I upload [my father’s photo], would I be able to find him?” Anthony paused and said, “I just tried to see what would happen. It’s impossible. He’s probably already dead.”

Unable to locate his father, Anthony has learned to let go of the past. “There are some things in life, like scars, that will always remain. They remind you of the past, and there is no need to be upset.”

Latest Update: On March 20, 74-year-old twins, John William and David Frederick Perry, traveled from Australia to Hong Kong to meet with Anthony.

Sources:, BBC

This article is written by Jayne for

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  1. He should do 23andme or some sort of genetic testing program for the paternal line. From there, he’s bound to find someone who shares a genetic link with him.

    It baffles me why he wants to know his dad so much though. To me, his father sounds like a dbag and deliberately abandoned his son. Just like how Etta doesn’t give a cr@p about her dad, neither do I think Anthony should.

    1. @coralie

      It may be the lineage from his paternal side that he’s trying to connect with. Regardless of who’s right or wrong, I am sure he wants to hear his dad’s side of the story as well.

      1. @anon yeah I think they do offer paternal lineage tests. he can upload his info on it and see if there’s any matches. from there, he can find clues to his heritage and hopefully have an easier time locating his dad. my worry is that even if he does locate him, what if his dad doesn’t want to meet him?

      2. @coralie

        Maybe his half-brother and sister might? At least, he will get some clue as to what happened then from a different perspective.

    2. @coralie Yea, not sure why he would want to search for his dad either. In all of his previous interviews, every time his dad was mentioned, Anthony would get all ticked off about what a piece of shxt his dad was (not just for abandoning him but also the way he had treated his mother prior to him being born). I remember there was an interview he did a few years back where he talked about the few memories he had of his time with his dad and most of it was negative…he also said that he inherited his dad’s bad temper, which affected him greatly most of his life as well. Also, his dad’s abandonment had far-reaching effects, as they were dirt poor at the time and his mom worked her butt off from morning til night but still could barely make enough money to get by…she ended up having to re-marry out of desperation due to their financial situation (that illness Anthony talked about in the interview – it was his stepfather who provided the money for him to have the surgery) – he also had a bad relationship with his stepfather, who already had many children of his own so he didn’t give a cr@p about Anthony other than providing for him financially through his mom. He pretty much had to learn to fend for himself at a young age – in addition to all the bullying from classmates, he was also constantly “disciplined” by teachers (who were especially rough and aggressive because the school he went to was for “problem” children – kids from broken families or who had disciplinary issues, etc.)….during a past interview, he had recounted how one teacher tried to punish him by making him stand outside the classroom naked and when he resisted, the teacher locked him up in a room and beat him (he was only around 8 or 9 years old at the time)…because of all that he went through at such a young age, he learned to fight when he was 14 and in that same interview (from a few years back), he said that when he was sexually harassed by some stranger at the age of 16, he went and chased the guy down and beat him to a pulp — since there was no one else to help him, he had to help himself. With such a rough childhood, it’s no wonder that Anthony developed such an outwardly fierce and tough personality….it’s a miracle he didn’t turn to drugs or join a gang or throw his life away like a lot of today’s kids with unhappy childhoods do – pretty sure going into acting saved him, along with his mother’s efforts later on (for all his toughness, Anthony does have a soft heart, especially when it comes to his mom)….

  2. i didn’t know he had such a heart-wrenching past. he comes across with such a strong personality and unrestrained by what others say or think.

    i thought it was always a bonus born a mix child with the good looks and western ancestry people’d think you’re cool back in the days esp. good for him for achieving stardom but then of course it didn’t come cheap.

    1. @m0m0 Anthony grew up in 1970s Hong Kong when children of mixed heritage was not very common. Kids can be brutal when teasing others about appearances. But Anthony was probably more insecure about his father leaving the family than simply his own looks.

      Despite his looks, Anthony had a lot of supporting roles in TV series. It was his entry into the film industry in the 1990s where he found fame playing rapists and serial killers in Category III films. He and Francis Ng took a lot of film roles that were considered undesirable by other young actors at the time. Although Anthony won a HKFA Best Actor for his serial killer role, he was not happy as he continued to receive such roles. It was at this time that he decided to travel to England to study.

      I have always been somewhat intimidated by Anthony’s fierce and sometimes insane roles in movies. No doubt he has the acting chops, but his roles were a little hard to digest.

      I felt very sad while reading his interview about his search for his father. I’m sure his mother has told him everything there is to know about his father. While it was not revealed in the interview why his father left, it is understandable why Anthony wants to meet with him. Not to make amends, but to see the person who has haunted his childhood for so many years and to truly put it to rest.

  3. it seems he needs a answer from his dad or he already forgive his dad. nice picture of his childhood, never thought he can looks so cute when he was a little kid.

  4. I’m thinking he’s just too nice that’s all and he does looks cute when he’s a baby and as a young child.

  5. I remember an interview where Anthony said he didn’t care about his biological father, didn’t want to find him. Neither did he want to find his half siblings as they will have their own lives. I guess he changed his mind after he gets older. Maybe he wants some closure now.

    1. @kidd the years that went by before he finally changed his mind may have caused him the chance to find his father.
      Anthony probably just want to find him and make him feel bad for abandoning him more than anything.

    2. @kidd Well, in the interview that this article was translated from (the one in Chinese), Anthony actually did say that he has come to terms with his father’s abandonment and no longer has the desire to look for him now (keep in mind that he uploaded that Facebook post searching for his father last year, not this year, and since nothing came of it, he’s not actively searching anymore)….so in a way, the above translation is misleading….

  6. His dad sound like a major *ick!! Not a fan of Anthony but I’m glad he found success after such a tough childhood.

    1. neither am i…never liked anthony wong.
      since his father was such a jerk, why bother to find him?
      his mother was a single mum after the jerk walked out on them.

  7. Dear Anthony,

    You did not need to find him to find your identity. You are your mother’s son. You are mixed race, so be it. He was such a jerk, if he’s alive, ignore him. No need for any closure since nothing ever opened. Just know he abandoned you and your mom. But that’s not what him a jerk. The fact that he made sure your mother paid for the long distance call before taking the call defines him. You are not that sort of bastard. Forget him.

    1. @funnlim just let him find his answer if he thinks this is the best way to solve it. the reason is maybe more complicated than we could imagine. staying in a condition of hate and sorrow doesnt make him happier.

      1. @kolo Agree. Perhaps at 52yo he has mellowed and realised if he doesn’t find his dad now, he never would. Sometimes, we are angry and hid behind our hurt proclaiming never. But as time goes by, and as we grow older, we learn to accept some things are never perfect and maybe he wants to know his father and tell that all is forgiven. I hope he finds his dad and complete that painful chapter of his life.

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