Dicky Cheung Talks About Abusive Father and Financial Setbacks

Dicky Cheung (張衛健) is well known for his talent in comedies. While many viewers witnessed his comedic timing in The Learning Curve of a Warlord <大帥>, few know about his struggles in life. In a motivational speech before a large crowd of students yesterday, Dicky spoke about how growing up with an abusive father, suffering financial difficulties and relationship troubles have shaped him as a person.

Almost Suffocated From Abuse

Dicky’s father was a sailor and only lived in Hong Kong three months in a year. Whenever his father returned home, he would beat his family. One time, Dicky whistled at a nice car while taking a stroll with his father. When he returned home, his father mercilessly punished Dicky, “Without saying anything, he lifted me out of bed and pummeled me. He pummeled me until I couldn’t breathe and almost suffocated. He also hit my younger brother very badly. I remembered at the age of 7 or 8, I was thinking when I would be killed.”

To cope with his father’s abusive habits, Dicky counted down how long his father would stay in Hong Kong. “Every year, he was only here for three months. Soon it was two months left, and later there was only one month left. His abuse doesn’t happen every day and I wasn’t always the target. When my parents divorced, I was more happy than sad.”

Too Poor to Buy Lunch

During his early days at TVB, Dicky’s salary was low and he didn’t have money for his meals. When he ate at TVB’s cafeteria, he would lie that he forgot his wallet. Although the cafeteria owner was very nice and let him off every time, the owner eventually told him to stop lying. Although the owner knew that Dicky didn’t have any money, he saw potential in Dicky as an actor, and knew that Dicky would repay him one day.

With eight years of hard work, Dicky eventually was able to star in main roles and earned enough money to repay the cafeteria owner’s kindness. However upon his return to the cafeteria, he found out the owner had already passed away. Using this lesson to teach others, Dicky said that it is important to cherish the people around you before it’s too late.

Dumped by Ex-Girlfriends for Being Poor

Dicky admitted that his ex-girlfriends broke up with him because they didn’t think that he would be able to support them. One time, Dicky broke his arm while filming and had to be admitted to the hospital for surgery. Upon waking up from anesthesia, his ex-girlfriend from outside the entertainment circle told him she wanted to break up because she didn’t want to wait half a year to be able to buy designer purses.

While DIcky was in pain from the surgery, Dicky admitted that the physical pain was not as bad as his emotional pain from the heartbreak. This was why Dicky was determined to find a girlfriend who is not materialistic and his wife, Jess Zhang (張茜平), fits the criteria perfectly. He also mentioned that his ex-girlfriends Elvina Kong (江欣燕) and Jessica Hsuan (宣萱) were supportive of his struggles and often encouraged him.

Being frank in his interview, Dicky hoped that he can use his personal experiences to motivate others. “I wanted to share positive energy with the youths, especially since two students committed suicide recently. Using my past experience, I wanted to tell them to not give up even when there are setbacks. It’s important to slow down the feeling of frustration and sadness, so that you can get over the setbacks.”

Sources: On.cc [1,2]

This article is written by Sammi for JayneStars.com.

Related Articles


  1. When normal people don’t have money to eat out, they would save money by bringing their own lunch. Not Dickie! He chooses instead to eat at the cafe and don’t intend on paying…

    1. @mike yeah….lying about forgetting to bring his wallet. But this wasn’t the only time he lied. To get a leg up in the new talent singing competition, he also lied that he was Leslie Cheung’s cousin.

      1. @passingby2 I’ve commented before how candid he was in another interview where he admitted to using many tactics (lies) to get more opportunities in the industry. Its difficult in this industry so I didn’t think much of it. But he seems to lie on a regular basis to get his way even cheat a business owner out of meals regularly.

  2. He probably learned to lie many times as a child out of survival. To be physically abused as a child, would have taken both an emotional and psychological toll on him and as a result shaped the type of person he is today..

  3. Not sure if anyone has rewatched but I felt Dicky was very lucky to win that New Talent singing Competition. He just imitated Leslie’s voice weakly and didn’t even sing with his genuine voice. His confidence and presence of brilliant though. Gallen was vocally much better than him but stiff and won nothing. Louis Yuen sung better and had presence. Many others were better. However, even in the early days, Dicky was known to make of effort to change his lines when acting. He is very talented and hardworking and deserves his success….

Comments are closed.