Christopher Doyle

A Hong Kong film legend, cinematographer Christopher Doyle has helped to shape the way the world sees the Fragrant Harbour through the silver screen


Iconic cinematographer Christopher Doyle is renowned for his atmospheric composition, his talent for dramatic lighting and his sensitivity to emotion—and for achieving numerous cinematic effects, despite an often-chaotic working method.

Famously caustic and outspoken, and given to outrageous antics, he is perhaps best known for his collaboration with director Wong Kar-wai, which lasted for seven films. Originally from Australia, Doyle has lived in Hong Kong for most of his adult life after first coming to the city in 1971, aged 19, as a sailor on a cargo ship; his other early jobs included herding cattle in Israel, drilling for oil in India and working as a doctor of Chinese medicine in Thailand.

A self-taught cinematographer, Doyle started off as a photographer before getting his break in film on 1983 Taiwanese New Wave drama That Day, On the Beach. Also a director of several features and short films, he has worked on more than 100 films, about half of them in the Chinese language.

Doyle’s Chinese name, Du Kefeng or Dou Ho-fung, given to him by his Mandarin teacher, also provides the translated name of a 2021 documentary about his life, Like the Wind.

(Photo: Getty Images)

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Did you know?

In 2021 Christopher Doyle teamed up with Hong Kong craft-beer company Carbon Brews to create his own double hazy IPA, called I Drink Therefore I Am.

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