Some say success is the enemy of creativity; others have blamed the pram in the hall. But one of China's best-known film directors has found a new culprit: smog.
"Cornered by the terrible weather, I have nowhere to go … I am unable to focus on my artistic creation," said Chen Kaige, who won the Palme d'Or for his 1993 film Farewell My Concubine.
His comments reflect growing public concern about China's environmental record, exacerbated by the severe air pollution in Beijing and other areas this winter, water pollution scandals and the government's refusal to release research on soil pollution.
Chen, 61, described the weather as weird, appalling and unbelievable, according to the state news agency Xinhua. He cited the death of a prized jujube tree two years ago as proof of Beijing's deteriorating environment,