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12 items from 2012


Marrakech '12: Zhang Yimou Talks Working With Christian Bale, The Growing Chinese Box Office & More

8 December 2012 6:23 AM, PST | The Playlist | See recent The Playlist news »

Zhang Yimou ("Raise the Red Lantern," "Ju Dou," "Hero," "House of the Flying Daggers") has been making movies in his homeland of China, from within the system, for the past two and a half decades. During this time, he has witnessed, and participated in, the gradual, incremental thawing of Chinese relations with the West, and the partial loosening of the viselike grip of governmental control over film production. Honored with a tribute at the Marrakech International Film Festival, and presenting his newest film "The Flowers of War", Zhang spoke, through two translators (Mandarin-French, French-English) to a small group of journalists about his filmmaking life under a notoriously repressive regime, the themes he revisits, and working with Christian Bale. Here are five highlights from that conversation. 1. Yimou's characteristic focus on female protagonists is his way of paying tribute to his mother. "I respect women a lot »

- Jessica Kiang

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Gong Li Will Be The Last Empress

18 September 2012 3:17 PM, PDT | cinemablend.com | See recent Cinema Blend news »

Chinese actress Gong Li is undoubtedly one of her nation's biggest stars. Since her screen debut in celebrated director Zhang Yimou's Red Sorghum in 1987, she's been his constant muse, appearing a dozen of his productions, including the Oscar-nominated dramas Ju Dou, Raise the Red Lantern, and Curse of the Golden Flower. But the gorgeous actress, who hasn't seemed to age a day since the '90s, has also made her mark in American cinema, memorably playing the cruel and calculating Hatsumomo in Rob Marshall's Academy Award-winning adaptation Memoirs of a Geisha. THR reports China and the Us will unite to produce the English-language drama The Last Empress, and quite rightly Li has been selected to star. The ambitious film will follow the life of Empress Cixi, who used her incredible charm and confidence to rule the last imperial dynasty of China effectively.though unofficially.for nearly fifty years. She »

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The Flowers of War – review

4 August 2012 4:02 PM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

A couple of years ago, there appeared within a week of each other two serious, sober films about one of the worst atrocities of an atrocious century, the Japanese siege and destruction of Nanking in the winter of 1937-38 that resulted in the massacre of some 300,000 civilians. Lu Chuan's black-and-white City of Life and Death tells the story from the point of view of the Chinese victims and the Japanese invaders. Florian Gallenberger's restrained City of War: The Story of John Rabe observes the events through the eyes of a group of European residents, among them a Schindler figure, boss of the Siemens factory (and, ironically, a Nazi party member), who created a safety zone that saved the lives of 200,000 Chinese citizens.

Zhang Yimou, one of China's most talented film-makers (his landmark movies include Red Sorghum, Raise the Red Lantern and Ju Dou), has unwisely imposed a largely fictionalised story on this appalling incident. »

- Philip French

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The Flowers of War: late bloomer?

3 August 2012 9:55 AM, PDT | The Guardian - Film News | See recent The Guardian - Film News news »

Despite having a huge budget, global aspirations and Christian Bale, the harrowing Chinese film The Flowers of War bombed in the Us. Will the setback deter China's ambitious film-makers?

Few could question Zhang Yimou's ambition. In the 1980s and 1990s, he won acclaim with the likes of Ju Dou and Raise the Red Lantern. In the 2000s, he stormed to global box-office success with Hero. Though Danny Boyle's Olympics opener is now fresher in the mind, Zhang's spectacular staging of the Beijing opening ceremony four years ago left a lasting impression of Chinese capability that any of history's greatest propagandists would have envied. It also signified that Zhang, who hailed from a family with a Chinese nationalist past and was once seen as a subversive film-maker, had been welcomed into the fold of official Communist party approval.

Zhang's latest production, The Flowers of War, hits British cinemas Friday – and aims even higher. »

- Alex von Tunzelmann

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Gong Li: Marco Polo Movie

29 May 2012 3:53 PM, PDT | Alt Film Guide | See recent Alt Film Guide news »

Gong Li in (but not as) Marco Polo? Director Tarsem Singh (Immortals / Mirror Mirror) and producer Gianni Nunnari (300 / 300: Battle of Artemisia) are reportedly working on a film project about the life of the Italian explorer, previously incarnated on screen by the likes of Gary Cooper (in Archie Mayo’s The Adventures of Marco Polo, 1938), Rory Calhoun (Piero Pierotti and Hugo Fregonese’s Marco Polo, 1962), Horst Buchholz (Denys de La Patellière and Raoul Lévy’s Marco the Magnificent, 1965), and Ian Somerhalder (Kevin Connor’s TV movie Marco Polo, 2007). According to Screen Daily, the Chinese Gong Li would play a Mongolian princess. In Memoirs of a Geisha Gong played a Japanese geisha. She hasn’t played any Swedes yet, I don’t think, even though that would be karmic. After all, Swedish-born Warner Oland was a frequent "Chinaman," including Charlie Chan, in numerous Hollywood movies of the ’20s and ’30s. The »

- Andre Soares

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CAA Signs Chinese Helmer Zhang Yimou

9 May 2012 7:59 AM, PDT | Deadline | See recent Deadline news »

Exclusive: As CAA continues to bolster its presence in China, the agency has added one of the country’s premier filmmakers to the client roster. It has signed Zhang Yimou, whose film Ju Dou became the first Chinese feature to be nominated for an Oscar, and who also directed the dazzling opening ceremonies for the 2008 Beijing Olympics. The agency will rep his Chinese films, and bring him into the Hollywood fold as well. His films include the BAFTA-winning Raise The Red Lantern, Hero, House Of Flying Daggers and most recently the Christian Bale-starrer Flowers Of War. The filmmaker continues to be managed by Mo Zhang and Catherine Pang in China. »

- MIKE FLEMING

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New Domestic Poster for The Flowers Of War Starring Christian Bale

21 January 2012 | The Daily BLAM! | See recent The Daily BLAM! news »

In The Flowers Of War, Director Zhang Yimou (Raise The Red Lantern, Ju Dou, Hero, House Of Flying Daggers) tells an epic story of love and sacrifice. The film, set during Japan's 1937 invasion of China, is told from a young girl's point of view, not as a history lesson, but as an intimate, elemental and paradoxically universal celebration of the human spirit. Bale stars as a dissolute Westerner who seeks refuge in a Catholic church. There he meets a beautiful Chinese courtesan who helps him rescue a group of schoolgirls from a terrible fate at the hands of the Japanese. The Flowers Of War was adapted by Liu Heng and Geling Yan from the novel by Geling Yan. The film is produced by Zhang Weiping (marking his tenth collaboration with Zhang Yimou) under his New Pictures Film banner. The »

- Pietro Filipponi

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The Flowers Of War Exclusive Movie Clip

21 January 2012 12:55 AM, PST | Upcoming-Movies.com | See recent Upcoming-Movies.com news »

New clip from The Flowers of War, starring Christian Bale, Ni Ni, Xinyi Zhang and Paul Schneider. Helmed by Zhang Yimou (Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, Hero, House of the Flying Daggers) from the script by Liu Heng, based on the novel by Geling Yan, The Flowers of War tells an epic story of love and sacrifice. The new clip is called "Permit," courtesy of Yahoo Movies. The film, set during Japan’s 1937 invasion of China, is told from a young girl’s point of view, not as a history lesson, but as an intimate, elemental and paradoxically universal celebration of the human spirit. Bale stars as a dissolute Westerner who seeks refuge in a Catholic church. There he meets a beautiful Chinese courtesan who helps him rescue a group of schoolgirls from a terrible fate at the hands of the Japanese. »

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The Flowers Of War Exclusive Movie Clip

21 January 2012 12:55 AM, PST | Upcoming-Movies.com | See recent Upcoming-Movies.com news »

New clip from The Flowers of War, starring Christian Bale, Ni Ni, Xinyi Zhang and Paul Schneider. Helmed by Zhang Yimou (Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, Hero, House of the Flying Daggers) from the script by Liu Heng, based on the novel by Geling Yan, The Flowers of War tells an epic story of love and sacrifice. The new clip is called "Permit," courtesy of Yahoo Movies. The film, set during Japan’s 1937 invasion of China, is told from a young girl’s point of view, not as a history lesson, but as an intimate, elemental and paradoxically universal celebration of the human spirit. Bale stars as a dissolute Westerner who seeks refuge in a Catholic church. There he meets a beautiful Chinese courtesan who helps him rescue a group of schoolgirls from a terrible fate at the hands of the Japanese. »

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The Flowers Of War Exclusive Movie Clip

21 January 2012 12:55 AM, PST | Upcoming-Movies.com | See recent Upcoming-Movies.com news »

New clip from The Flowers of War, starring Christian Bale, Ni Ni, Xinyi Zhang and Paul Schneider. Helmed by Zhang Yimou (Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, Hero, House of the Flying Daggers) from the script by Liu Heng, based on the novel by Geling Yan, The Flowers of War tells an epic story of love and sacrifice. The new clip is called "Permit," courtesy of Yahoo Movies. The film, set during Japan’s 1937 invasion of China, is told from a young girl’s point of view, not as a history lesson, but as an intimate, elemental and paradoxically universal celebration of the human spirit. Bale stars as a dissolute Westerner who seeks refuge in a Catholic church. There he meets a beautiful Chinese courtesan who helps him rescue a group of schoolgirls from a terrible fate at the hands of the Japanese. »

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Exclusive Clip from The Flowers Of War Starring Christian Bale

20 January 2012 11:26 AM, PST | Collider.com | See recent Collider.com news »

We’ve been provided with an exclusive clip from the upcoming historical drama The Flowers of War. Directed by Zhang Yimou (Hero), the film is set during the Japanese invasion of China in 1937 and stars Christian Bale as a priest who seeks refuge in a local church, where he meets a beautiful Chinese courtesan who helps him rescue a group of schoolgirls from a terrible fate at the hands of the Japanese. The pic is the most expensive movie that China has ever made, and the production values are on full display in the impressive trailers. Hit the jump to check out the clip. The Flowers of War is in select theaters now. Here’s the official synopsis: Internationally acclaimed filmmaker Zhang Yimou (Raise the Red Lantern, Ju Dou, Hero, House of the Flying Daggers) tells an epic story of love and sacrifice in The Flowers Of War, starring Christian Bale and introducing Ni Ni. »

- Adam Chitwood

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HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: 35 Pairs of Chicago Passes to ‘The Flowers of War’ With Christian Bale

14 January 2012 2:13 PM, PST | HollywoodChicago.com | See recent HollywoodChicago.com news »

Chicago – In our latest foreign-language edition of HollywoodChicago.com Hookup: Film, we have 35 admit-two movie passes up for grabs to the Golden Globe-nominated foreign-language film “The Flowers of War” starring Christian Bale from the director of “Hero”!

“The Flowers of War” from director Yimou Zhang also stars Ni Ni, Xinyi Zhang, Paul Schneider, Shigeo Kobayashi, Atsurô Watabe, Dawei Tong, Tianyuan Huang, Bai Xue, Takashi Yamanaka, Shawn Dou, Kefan Cao and Hai-Bo Huang from writer Heng Liu based on the novel by Geling Yan. The film opens in Chicago on Jan. 20, 2012.

To win your free pass to the advance Chicago screening of “The Flowers of War” courtesy of HollywoodChicago.com, just answer our question below. That’s it! This advance screening is on Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2011 at 7 p.m. in downtown Chicago. Directions to enter this HollywoodChicago.com Hookup and win can be found beneath the graphic below.

The movie poster for »

- adam@hollywoodchicago.com (Adam Fendelman)

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12 items from 2012


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