Tang Wei (simplified Chinese: 汤唯; traditional Chinese: 湯唯; pinyin: Tāng WÃ©i) (born October 7, 1979) is a Chinese actress. She rose to prominence for her appearance in Lust, Caution.
Tang is the only child of a former stage actress and painter. In an interview, she revealed that she often traveled around China and eventually learned to paint, adding that she was influenced by her parents. Tang graduated from a local vocational high school in her hometown in 1996, where her teachers described her as "athletic" and a "good student who always did her homework". She had no plans to become famous; she originally aspired to become an archaeologist or lawyer. Tang made the decision to enter the entertainment industry after doing some modeling in 1997. She graduated from the Central Academy of Drama in 2002.
Tang met Zhu Yuchen in 1995. A Shanghai native, both were majoring in drama and acting. By 1998, the couple had moved in together while continuing to receive university education. They officially split in 2002, a few weeks before Zhu and Tang obtained degrees at the acting school, and Tang was reported to be distraught and crying upon witnessing their graduation ceremony.
Shortly after her university graduation, Tang met Stan Lai during one of his trips to China. He was impressed with the actress, and was quoted as saying, "The number of stars may not be good actors, a lot of good actors may not be good stars, but Tang Wei was fortunate to have done it." He proceeded to recommend her to several directors and was thus cast in more roles, although she was relatively unknown outside of her hometown in China at this time. Nonetheless, Tang starred in a TV series, Policewoman Swallow (2004) and brief university drama, Che Guevara (2004). After working with a more diverse group of actresses, she also appeared in TV dramas Leaving Seafront Street (2005), East Meets West (2005) and Born in the 60s (2006).