Hong Kong media mogul Run Run Shaw dies at 106

Tue Jan 7, 2014 5:33am EST
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By Grace Li and Alice Woodhouse

HONG KONG (Reuters) - Hong Kong media mogul Sir Run Run Shaw, who created an empire in Asia spanning movies to television, died on Tuesday at the age of 106, his company said.

Shaw died peacefully at his home in Hong Kong, surrounded by his family, his company, Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), said in a statement.

One of Hong Kong cinema's defining figures, Shaw popularized Chinese kung fu films in the West and helped turn the former British colony into a "Hollywood East" over an 80-year career.

He set up Hong Kong's biggest free-to-air television operator, TVB, in 1967 and served as its executive chairman until 2011, helping to shape the city's media culture.

"Thanks to his wise leadership, TVB has its status today after 46 years," said TVB Executive Chairman Norman Leung.

A passionate film-lover from an early age, legend has it that Shaw first cut his teeth in the business by distributing film reels on a bicycle to rural cinemas in Singapore and Malaysia, giving poignancy to his name "Run Run".

He started out helping his elder brothers Runje, Runde and Runme set up a film studio in Shanghai in 1925. The brothers later moved into Hong Kong - making and distributing films to a chain of around 100 cinemas spread across other Asian markets such as Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.

Shaw eventually split from his brothers to set up his own studio in the 1950s dubbed the dream factory, which ushered in a golden era of Hong Kong film-making.   Continued...

Hong Kong tycoon Run Run Shaw attends the Run Run Shaw prize presentation ceremony in Hong Kong in this file September 28, 2010 photo. REUTERS/Bobby Yip