Last Updated: March 5, 2024
Richest CelebritiesDirectors
Net Worth:
$70 Million
May 1, 1946 (77 years old)
5 ft 4 in (1.64 m)
Film Producer, Screenwriter, Actor, Film director, Film Editor
đŸ’° Compare John Woo's Net Worth

What Is John Woo's Net Worth?

John Woo is a Hong Kong film director, writer, producer, editor, and actor who has a net worth of $70 million. John Woo is most widely recognized for his brand of "operatic" action films. His films, which have been produced in both Hong Kong and the U.S., have been hugely popular and include such hits as "A Better Tomorrow" (1986), "Hard Boiled" (1992), "Face/Off" (1997), and "Mission Impossible 2" (2000). Woo has directed more than 40 projects, and he has written and produced many of the films he has directed. John edited "Hard Boiled" as well as 1982's "To Hell with the Devil" and 1990's "Bullet in the Head." As an actor, he has been in several of his films, including "Bullet in the Head" and "Hard Boiled," and he has also appeared in the films "The Thirty Million Dollar Rush" (1987), "I Love Maria" (1988), "Starry is the Night" (1988), "Twin Dragons" (1992), and "Task Force" (1997). John also created the Virgin Comics series "John Woo's 7 Brothers" (2006) and "John Woo's 7 Brothers II" (2007), and he founded Lion Rock Productions. In 2010, he received a Silver Bauhinia Star (SBS) as part of the Hong Kong government's annual honors.

Early Life

John Woo was born Wu Yu-seng on September 22, 1946, in Guangzhou, China. His birth took place during the Chinese Civil War, and his Protestant Christian family faced persecution when Mao Zedong implemented an anti-bourgeois purge after China's communist revolution. When Woo was 5 years old, his family left China for Hong Kong, where they lived in the Shek Kip Mei slums. John's mother worked on construction sites as a manual laborer, and tuberculosis made his father, a teacher, unable to work. In 1953, a fire destroyed the family's home, but money raised from disaster relief efforts made it possible for them to move. Woo was diagnosed with a serious back condition at the age of 3, and after undergoing spinal surgery, he couldn't walk correctly until he was 8 years old. This caused his right leg to be shorter than his left leg. Because of school age restrictions, John's mother changed his birth year to 1948, which reportedly stayed on his passport through adulthood.


In 1969, Woo landed a job at Cathay Studios as a script supervisor. Two years later, he was hired to be an assistant director at Shaw Studios. The films of Bruce Lee inspired John to direct his own action movies, and he made his feature film directorial debut with 1974's "The Young Dragons," which he also wrote. Next, Woo wrote and directed "The Dragon Tamers" (1975), "Princess Chang Ping" (1976), "Hand of Death" (1976), "Money Crazy" (1977), "Hello, Late Homecomers" (1978), "Follow the Star" (1978), and "Last Hurrah for Chivalry" (1979), and he played Scholar Cheng in "Hand of Death" and Mr. Chen in "Follow the Star." In the '80s, Woo wrote and directed "From Riches to Rags" (1980), "To Hell with the Devil" (1981), "Laughing Times" (1981), "The Time You Need a Friend" (1984), "A Better Tomorrow II" (1987), and "The Killer" (1989), directed "Plain Jane to the Rescue" (1982) and "Just Heroes" (1989), directed and produced "Run, Tiger, Run" (1985), and wrote, directed, and produced "A Better Tomorrow" (1986) and "Heroes Shed No Tears" (1986). He also played Inspector Wu in "A Better Tomorrow."

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The 1990 film "Bullet in the Head" (which John wrote, produced, directed, and appeared in) earned four Hong Kong Film Award nominations, as did 1991's "Once a Thief," which he wrote and directed. Woo then wrote and directed the film "Hard Boiled" (1992) and directed "Hard Target" (1993), "Broken Arrow" (1996), and the John TravoltaNicolas Cage thriller "Face/Off" (1997). "Face/Off" grossed $245.7 million at the box office, and 2002's "Mission: Impossible 2" was even more successful, bringing in $549.6 million. John directed and executive produced the 1996 TV movie "Once a Thief," then he served as an executive producer on the TV series of the same name from 1997 to 1998. In 1998, he was a director and executive producer on the TV movie "Blackjack." Woo directed and produced 2002's "Windtalkers" and 2003's "Paycheck," then he wrote, directed, and produced 2008's "Red Cliff: Part I" and 2009's "Red Cliff: Part II." He co-directed 2010's "Reign of Assassins" with Su Chao-pin, and he also produced the film. Woo directed and produced 2014's "The Crossing: Part I" and 2015's "The Crossing: Part II," then he directed 2017's "Manhunt." In 2023, he directed and produced "Silent Night," his first American film in 20 years.

Personal Life

John married Anne Chun-Lung Niu in 1976, and they have welcomed daughters Angeles and Kimberly and son Frank together. Woo identifies as a Christian, and in a BBC interview, he stated, "I believe in God. And I have so admiration for Jesus Christ and I always think he's a great philosopher. It always make me feel good, as a Christian."

Awards and Nominations

Woo has received two Saturn Award nominations from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films, winning Best Director for "Face/Off" in 1998. He was nominated in that category for "Hard Target" in 1994. "Face/Off" also earned John a Grand Jury Prize at the 1997 Sweden Fantastic Film Festival and Jupiter Awards for Best International Film and Best International Director as well as a Cahiers du Cinéma Top 10 Film Award nomination. He has received 12 Hong Kong Film Award nominations, taking home the prize for Best Picture for "A Better Tomorrow" (1987), Best Director for "The Killer" (1990), and Best Film Editing for "Bullet in the Head" (1991) and "Hard Boiled" (1993). For "Hard Boiled," he won an Asia-Pacific Film Festival Award for Best Editing and earned a Mystfest nomination for Best Film. Woo received an Action Movie Director Award at the 2001 World Stunt Awards, an Outstanding Contribution to Chinese Cinema award at the 2009 Shanghai International Film Festival, an Outstanding Contribution Award for Chinese Film at the 2009 Weibo Awards Ceremony, a Career Golden Lion at the 2010 Venice Film Festival, a Samurai Award at the 2015 Tokyo International Film Festival, and a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2019 Hawaii International Film Festival.

At the Golden Horse Film Festival, John was named Best Director for "A Better Tomorrow" in 1986, and he also earned a Best Feature Film nomination for that movie as well as a Best Film Editing nomination for "Bullet in the Head" (1990) and a Best Supporting Actor nomination for "Rebel from China" (1990). He won a Huabiao Film Award for Outstanding Abroad Director for "Red Cliff" and "Red Cliff II" at the 2009 Huabiao Film Awards, and he received an Asian Film Award nomination for Best Director for "Red Cliff" and award for Top-Grossing Film Director for "Red Cliff II." Woo also earned an Asian Film Critics Association Award nomination for Best Director for "Red Cliff II." At the 2012 Asia Pacific Screen Award, he won UNESCO Awards for "Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale I" and "Warriors of the Rainbow: Seediq Bale II," which he produced. John has also received a Gemini Award nomination for Best Dramatic Series for "Once a Thief" (1998) and a Chinese Film Media Award nomination for the Audience Award for Filmmaker of the Year (2009).

All net worths are calculated using data drawn from public sources. When provided, we also incorporate private tips and feedback received from the celebrities or their representatives. While we work diligently to ensure that our numbers are as accurate as possible, unless otherwise indicated they are only estimates. We welcome all corrections and feedback using the button below.
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