IMDb > Hero (2002)
Ying xiong
Quicklinks
Top Links
trailers and videosfull cast and crewtriviaofficial sitesmemorable quotes
Overview
main detailscombined detailsfull cast and crewcompany credits
Awards & Reviews
user reviewsexternal reviewsawardsuser ratingsparents guidemessage board
Plot & Quotes
plot summarysynopsisplot keywordsmemorable quotes
Did You Know?
triviagoofssoundtrack listingcrazy creditsalternate versionsmovie connectionsFAQ
Other Info
box office/businessrelease datesfilming locationstechnical specsliterature listingsNewsDesk
Promotional
taglines trailers and videos posters photo gallery
External Links
showtimesofficial sitesmiscellaneousphotographssound clipsvideo clips

Hero (2002) More at IMDbPro »Ying xiong (original title)

Photos (See all 48 | slideshow) Videos (see all 4)
Hero -- Trailer
Hero -- US Home Video Trailer from Miramax
Hero -- A series of Rashomon-like flashback accounts shape the story of how one man defeated three assassins who sought to murder the most powerful warlord in pre-unified China.

Overview

User Rating:
7.9/10   133,395 votes »
Your Rating:
Saving vote...
Deleting vote...
/10   (delete | history)
Sorry, there was a problem
MOVIEmeter: ?
Down 3% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
Director:
Contact:
View company contact information for Hero on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
27 August 2004 (USA) See more »
Tagline:
Kono kuni wa mada, hontô no hero wo shiranai [Japan] (This land doesn't know a real hero. Yet.) See more »
Plot:
A defense officer, Nameless, was summoned by the King of Qin regarding his success of terminating three warriors. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
Awards:
Nominated for Oscar. Another 34 wins & 25 nominations See more »
User Reviews:
Impressive See more (830 total) »

Cast

  (in credits order)

Jet Li ... Nameless

Tony Chiu Wai Leung ... Broken Sword (as Tony Leung Chiu-Wai)

Maggie Cheung ... Flying Snow (as Maggie Cheung Man-Yuk)

Ziyi Zhang ... Moon (as Zhang Ziyi)

Daoming Chen ... Qin Emperor

Donnie Yen ... Sky
Zhongyuan Liu ... Old scholar
Tianyong Zheng ... Old Servant
Yan Qin ... Prime Minister
rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Xia Bin ... Qin Guard #4
Hua Cao ... Qin Guard #2
Heizi ... Qin Guard #1

James Hong ... Qin Emperor (voice: English version)
Ma Wen Hua ... Head Eunuch
Xu Kuang Hua ... Pianist
Liu Jie ... Qin Guard #6
Li Lei ... Qin Guard #3

Emil Lin ... Nameless (voice: English version)

Bruce Locke ... Sky (voice: English version)
Jin Ming ... Eunuch

Angela Oh ... Moon (voice: English version)
Peng Qiang ... Qin Guard #5

James Sie ... Broken Sword (voice: English version)

Elizabeth Sung ... Flying Snow (voice: English version)
Chang Xiao Yang ... General
Wang Shou Xin ... Musician
Zhang Yi ... Qin Guard #7
Yakun Zhang ... The Qin guards' commander
Tielin Zhang ... (uncredited)

Directed by
Yimou Zhang 
 
Writing credits
(in alphabetical order)
Feng Li 
Bin Wang 
Yimou Zhang 

Produced by
Shoufang Dou .... executive producer
William Kong .... producer (as Bill Kong)
Philip Lee .... line producer
Sook Yhun .... producer (english version)
Weiping Zhang .... executive producer
Yimou Zhang .... producer
Zhenyan Zhang .... associate producer
 
Original Music by
Dun Tan 
 
Cinematography by
Christopher Doyle 
 
Film Editing by
Angie Lam 
Vincent Lee (documentary segment)
Ru Zhai 
 
Production Design by
Tingxiao Huo 
Zhenzhou Yi 
 
Art Direction by
Qin Hong Bo (supervising art director)
Zhong Han (supervising art director)
Tingxiao Huo 
Liu Yong Qi (supervising art director)
Bin Zhao 
 
Costume Design by
Emi Wada 
 
Makeup Department
Siu-Mui Chau .... chief hair stylist (as Chau Siu Mui)
Lee-Na Kwan .... chief makeup artist (as Lee Na Kwan)
Tam Ying Kwan .... hair stylist
Shul Niu .... assistant hair stylist
Yang Shu-Dong .... makeup artist
Ji Wei-Hua .... makeup artist
Xiaohai Yang .... makeup artist
 
Production Management
Tianhui Ge .... unit manager
Jane Maguire .... post-production supervisor
Zhenyan Zhang .... production manager
 
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Shi Bin .... seventh assistant director
Xiaoyang Chang .... fifth assistant director
Liu Guonan .... third assistant director (as Liu Guo Nan)
Tao Lu .... fourth assistant director (as Lu Tao)
Huan Qi .... first assistant director
Du Ming Xiang .... sixth assistant director
Jinzhan Zhang .... director: battle sequences (as Zhang Jin Zhan)
Wei Zhou .... second assistant director
 
Art Department
Zhao Xiao Dan .... property master
Gao De Zhong .... set dresser
Liu Jin Guo .... set dresser
Zhongquan Hu .... assistant set dresser (as Hu Zhong Quan)
Yi Hua .... sketch artist
Wang Xue Jun .... draftsman
Li Yan Lai .... sketch artist
Ming-Shan Li .... property master (as Ming Shan Li)
Guang Lu .... props
Xiao Jun Min .... assistant to sketch artist
Wang Jia Ren .... assistant set dresser
Ming Wu .... storyboard artist
Liu Yi .... assistant set dresser
Yang Zhan Yi .... assistant set dresser
 
Sound Department
Lai Jia Bin .... sound technician
Steve Burgess .... sound editor
Li Pei Gen .... sound assistant
Wei He .... sound technician
Yu Hou .... sound assistant
Peng Jiang .... second sound assistant
Tao Jun Jie .... sound technician
Si Guo Li .... sound assistant
Francis Ward Lindsay .... sound editor
Robert Mackenzie .... sound effects editor
Andrew Neil .... sound effects editor
Glenn Newnham .... sound editor
Paul Pirola .... sound effects editor
Roger Savage .... sound re-recording mixer
Roger Savage .... supervising sound editor
Blair Slater .... foley mixer & editor
Blair Slater .... foley recordist
Jing Tao .... sound
Jing Tao .... supervising sound editor
Li Wen .... sound assistant
Andy Wright .... assistant re-recording mixer
Wang Yu .... sound assistant
Zhigang Zhang .... first sound assistant
Chris Goodes .... sound editor (uncredited)
 
Visual Effects by
Jance Allen .... compositor
Charlie Armstrong .... senior compositor
Kevin Baillie .... digital artist
Aaron Barclay .... lead compositor
Ryan Beadle .... digital I/O
Chris Bone .... R&D programmer
Dan Breckwoldt .... digital compositor
Andy Brown .... visual effects supervisor: Animal Logic
Ian Brown .... lighting sequence lead
Alex Brownell .... visual effects coordinator: Tweak Films
Sonia Calvert .... digital compositor
Cedrick Chan .... digital artist
YouJin Choung .... visual effects
Sarah Cloutier .... digital liaison
Fiona Crawford .... visual effects producer
Francisco DeLaTorre .... visual effects artist: Tweak Films
Jonathan Dixon .... digital liaison
Dennis Dorney .... digital lineup
David Dulac .... visual effects supervisor
Wayde Duncan-Smith .... 3D animator
Rebecca Dunn .... digital compositor
Stephen Evans .... digital compositor
Arin Finger .... visual effects coordinator: The Orphanage
Lindsay Fleay .... 3D lead
Howard Fuller .... 3D animator
Michele Gray .... visual effects producer: Tweak Films
Matthew Hendershot .... digital artist: The Orphanage
Jesse Ho .... animator
Christopher Horvath .... visual effects supervisor: Tweak Films
Jim Hourihan .... visual effects research and development: Tweak Films
Sarahjane Javelo .... digital paint/rotoscope artist
Krista Jordan .... senior compositor
Keith Leung .... wires artist
Justen Marshall .... production programmer
Ian McCamey .... visual effects editor: The Orphanage
Yvette Memory .... visual effects coordinator: The Orphanage
Lori C. Miller .... digital compositor
Saki Mitchell .... digital compositor
Cliff Mueller .... lead animator: Tweak Films
Luke O'Byrne .... visual effects producer: The Orphanage
Scott Palleiko .... technical director: Tweak Films
Guoyu Pan .... visual effects supervisor
JaeWook Park .... technical director/compositor
Ellen Poon .... visual effects supervisor
Murray Pope .... visual effects executive producer
Alex Prichard .... digital artist: The Orphanage
Wang Shu Qing .... model maker
Dane Rapaport .... systems administrator
Jeff Renton .... 3D animator
Aaron Rhodes .... digital compositor: The Orphanage
Michael Root .... visual effects sequence supervisor: Tweak Films
Jonathan Rothbart .... visual effects supervisor: The Orphanage
Danielle Rubin .... visual effects coordinator
Marc Sadeghi .... executive visual effects producer
Richard Schlein .... visual effects executive producer: Tweak Films
Pheng Sisopha .... compositor
Christa Starr .... technical director: Tweak Films
Robert Sullivan .... video operations supervisor: Animal Logic
Chris Swinbanks .... film I/O supervisor
Ryan Tudhope .... digital artist
David Valentin .... visual effects associate producer
Ray Van Steenwyk .... animator
Sandeep Vengsarkar .... digital compositor
Carl Walters .... digital artist
Frederick Wolff .... scanning and recording operator
George Zwier .... digital compositor
S. Kai Bovaird .... digital effects artist (uncredited)
Ben De Luca .... systems administrator (uncredited)
Chris Godfrey .... on-set visual effects supervisor (uncredited)
Laurence Lok .... roto artist (uncredited)
Kristi Valk .... digital artist: The Orphanage (uncredited)
 
Stunts
Hu Wen Biao .... stunts
Xia Bin .... stunts
Hua Cao .... stunts
Siu-Tung Ching .... action director
Shi Feng .... stunts
Wang Wen Hua .... stunts
Wang Zhao Hui .... stunts
Zhao Hui .... stunts
Feng Iang .... stunts
Li Fang Jin .... stunts
Li Lei .... stunts
Cai Li .... action choreographer
Li Ou .... stunts
Huang Tao .... stunts
Wei Tung .... action director
Li Wei .... stunts
Jack Wong Wai Leung .... action choreographer
Zheng Xin Xin .... stunts
Din Yong .... stunts
Sun Yong .... stunts
Bai Lin Yuh .... stunts
 
Camera and Electrical Department
Jasmine Yuen Carrucan .... assistant camera (as Jasmine Yuen-Carrucan)
Wang Ji Chao .... additional assistant camera: battle sequences
Song De Hua .... assistant camera
Wei Guo Dong .... generator operator
Yu Jian Dong .... electrician
Guo Xing Hai .... assistant camera
Yong Hou .... additional camera operator
Dongsheng Jiang .... electrician (as Jian Dong Sheng)
Zhang Hua Jie .... additional assistant camera: battle sequences
Cao Jin .... additional assistant camera: battle sequences
Li Wu Jun .... generator operator
Zhu Al Jun .... assistant camera
Baoquan Li .... Steadicam operator (as Bao Quan Li)
Zhang Li .... additional assistant camera: battle sequences
Brett Matthews .... first assistant camera: "a" camera
Kong Yu Ping .... camera grip
Cao Yong Qiang .... electrician
Li Zu Rong .... still photographer
Yoshio Sato .... still photographer
Lihong Wang .... best boy electric
Tian Lin Wang .... additional assistant camera: battle sequences
Chao Wei .... camera grip
Chen Zhu Xiang .... assistant camera
Fusen Xu .... camera grip (as Fu Sen Xu)
Jeng Zi Ying .... electrician
Chuncheng Zhao .... assistant camera (as Zhao Chun Cheng)
Xiaoding Zhao .... camera operator
 
Costume and Wardrobe Department
Zeng Qing Chun .... costumer
Jin-Hua Gu .... costumer (as Gu Jin Hua)
Bao-Rong Huang .... wardrobe supervisor
Zhu Ming .... costumer
Zhu Run Sen .... costumer
 
Editorial Department
Olivier Fontenay .... color grader
Matt Garner .... post-production executive: Miramax
Mark Griffith .... digital intermediate colorist (2008 digital restoration)
Al Hansen .... digital colorist
Antonio Mestres .... assistant editor
 
Music Department
Richard King .... music scoring engineer
Simon Leadley .... music editor
Itzhak Perlman .... musician: violin solos and fiddling
Tim Ryan .... music editor
Katrina Schiller .... assistant music editor
Dun Tan .... conductor
 
Other crew
Kerry Dibbs .... post production assistant
Xu Ai Dong .... production assistant
Xia Li Fu .... production assistant
Wang Li Ge .... script supervisor
Li Guang .... script supervisor
Eidan Hanzei .... adr voice replacement (as Henry Hayashi)
Yong Hou .... location scout
Zhihua Hou .... assistant to director
Zhong Hu .... production assistant
Duang Xue Jun .... cashier
Kodo .... drumming
Ming Beaver Kwei .... personal assistant: Jet Li
Stephen Lam .... production coordinator
Roger Lee .... chief accountant
Maria Lo Orzel .... creative consultant
Stanley J. Orzel .... creative consultant
Ji Pei .... script supervisor
Fellicia Pullam .... assistant: Ziyi Zhang
Wei Ran .... script supervisor
Zhang Rui .... cashier
John Salvitti .... assistant: Donnie Yen (as John Paul Salvitti)
Quentin Tarantino .... presenter (US version)
Lao Li Ya .... production coordinator
Li Yan .... assistant: Ziyi Zhang
Wei Yan Yen .... production assistant
Shi Ze Yi .... production assistant
Lei Yu .... production assistant
Jiang Zi .... production assistant
 

Production CompaniesDistributorsSpecial EffectsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
"Ying xiong" - China (original title)
"Jet Li's Hero" - USA (promotional title)
"Quentin Tarantino Presents Hero" - USA (promotional title)
See more »
MPAA:
Rated PG-13 for stylized martial arts violence and a scene of sensuality
Runtime:
99 min | China:107 min (extended version) | China:93 min | Turkey:89 min (TV version)
Country:
Language:
Aspect Ratio:
2.35 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Certification:
Argentina:Atp | Australia:M | Brazil:14 | Canada:14A (Ontario) | Canada:G (Quebec) | Finland:K-11 | France:U | Germany:12 (bw) | Iceland:L (original rating) | Iceland:12 (video rating) | Ireland:12 | Malaysia:18SG | Mexico:B | Netherlands:12 | Norway:11 | Peru:PT | Philippines:PG-13 | Portugal:M/12 | Singapore:PG | South Korea:12 | South Korea:15 (extended version) (2014) | Spain:13 | Sweden:11 | Switzerland:10 (canton of Geneva) | Switzerland:10 (canton of Vaud) | Switzerland:14 (canton of the Grisons) | UK:12A | USA:PG-13 (certificate #39290)
Filming Locations:

Did You Know?

Trivia:
Robin Shou was the original choice for the role of Sky but dropped out for unknown reasons. Jet Li then suggested to the director that Donnie Yen would make the perfect opponent for Jet's own character.See more »
Goofs:
Continuity: When Nameless goes outside to help Flying Snow to fend off arrows, he shuts the door. Then later we still can see the door open.See more »
Quotes:
[first lines]
Nameless:[voiceover] I was orphaned at a young age and was never given a name. People simply called me Nameless. With no family name to live up to, I devoted myself to the sword. I spent ten years perfecting unique skills as a swordsman. The King of Qin has summoned me to court, for what I have accomplished has astonished the kingdom.
See more »
Movie Connections:

FAQ

Any recommendations for movies similar to "Ying xiong"?
What are the differences between the Theatrical Version and the Director's Cut?
Is "Ying xiong" based on a book?
See more »
93 out of 141 people found the following review useful.
Impressive, 10 May 2003
Author: Simon Booth from UK

It sounded like a HK Cinema fan's ultimate wet dream... Zhang Yimou to direct a martial arts epic with Jet Li, Maggie Cheung, Leung Chiu Wai, Zhang Ziyi and Donnie Yen in the cast, Ching Siu-Tung doing the action, Christopher Doyle the cinematography and Emil Wada the costumes. What more could you ask for? (Well, Brigitte Lin coming out of retirement and Yuen Wo Ping and Sammo Hung sharing the action director credits, perhaps).

I guess we have CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON to thank for making the wu xia world bankable again, and generating the interest and investment required to bring a project of this stature together. There's no doubt that the US Market was a major target, and US$ went into the funding. Given this it's a tragedy that Yimou let Miramax get their paws on it and effectively ruin any chances it had of major US success

Apart from Zhang Ziyi and the Tan Dun soundtrack (a terrible choice no doubt enforced by US investors), CROUCHING TIGER HIDDEN DRAGON is not a good reference point by which to evaluate HERO. Much more appropriate is Wong Kar Wai's ASHES OF TIME, with which it shares two lead actors and a cinematographer. HERO is definitely more commercially oriented, but shares a beauty and philosophical richness with AOT, and a certain melancholy mood.

The story of HERO starts off quite simply, as Jet Li begins to recount his martial triumphs to the Emperor of Qin. The tale is told in flashbacks which revisit and re-evaluate the same events, elaborating on and changing the story as we learn more. It's reminiscent of Akira Kurosawa's RASHOMON, and is a great way of developing a mystery thriller. Zhang Yimou handles the building of the tale expertly, as one would expect from such a master film maker.

Zhang Yimou himself is such an accomplished cinematographer he hardly needed to hire somebody else for the job - but if there's anybody better than Yimou it's Christopher Doyle. I wonder how much conflict there was on set though, as I am sure each had very strong visions of how they wanted scenes to look. The result doesn't show any signs of it if such a conflict occured though, as the visual style seems exceptionally strong and focussed throughout. A large part of this is Yimou's use of bold colours to delineate the different sections of the story (The green, the red, the yellow, the blue, the white). With Emil Wada's stunning costumes and the great choice of locations, HERO is almost as rich in stunning imagery as ASHES OF TIME. It's a true work of art, harking back to Yimou's older films like SHANGHAI TRIAD and RAISE THE RED LANTERN - I'm really pleased to see him making such visual films again. The visuals are sometimes let down by some unconvincing CGI effects, unfortunately.

Zhang Yimou has never directed an action movie before, so people were clearly worried he wouldn't know what to do with the fight scenes that a wu xia movie needs more than anything else. It's been quite a few years since Ching Siu Tung has produced any really impressive work too, so I was rather worried - especially when I heard (from good authority) that Yimou had Ching had clashed on set. Apparently Zhang wanted more grounded, realistic kung fu, which really isn't Ching Siu Tung's thing (should have got Sammo or Yuen Wo Ping!). I guess Ching got the upper hand in the end, as the fight scenes are certainly not grounded or realistic - they're very much about the twirling and whirling and the graceful flying that Ching Siu Tung virtually defined. They're not as manic as he usually makes the action when he directs himself, though - a fact that sometimes makes the wirework look a bit awkward.

A real surprise is that the weakest fight scene of the film is that one that pits the two best martial artists together. Jet Li vs. Donnie Yen opens the film with some sword vs. spear action. There's some beautiful moments, but I felt the scene lacked impact and featured some awkward moves too. Oddly enough, the fight I enjoyed the most featured no real martial artistry at all - Maggie Cheung vs (well, you'll see) in a beautiful autumnal scene of falling leaves. I guess that's because Ching Siu Tung is really not working to his strengths when he tries to do "real" martial arts.

I had held off watching HERO for months, because as soon as I got the first released DVD (the DVD-5 from Guang Dong Face Ah) it was announced that the extended version of the film would be released in a few weeks. It's generally well known now that Zhang Yimou was persuaded to cut about 20 minutes from the film by the hatchet men at MiramAXE, who really must die first when the revolution comes. I figured the first time I see it I should see the best possible version, for maximum impact, so I was willing to wait. Well it's been 2 months now and the extended version is now indefinitely delayed due to legal issues, so I finally gave in and watched the DVD I'd had lying around for so long. Now that I've seen it I have to say I don't really see what another 20 minutes would add to the film - it seems quite complete and well paced at about 95 minutes. A little more development of Donnie Yen's character would be nice, but other than that it's hard to imagine what is missing. Longer action scenes maybe? Or perhaps just 20 minutes of Christopher Doyle's beautifully composed landscape shots, or close ups of Maggie Cheung dying.

I'm glad I waited to see the film anyway though, as it allowed all the hype and anticipation to die down. Unfortunately, when a film is as highly anticipated as this it's inevitable that there will be "backlash syndrome" as people feel let down that it wasn't the ultimate movie of all time they heard/hoped it would be (it was amusing to watch the reviews on CROUCHING TIGER swing between "incredible" and "awful" as hype waves ruined the experience for many, and I'm sure the same will happen with HERO).

Zhang Yimou is an extremely talented director in many respects, but perhaps the greatest is his ability to get incredible performances out of his cast. With such an illustrious cast on board he perhaps felt he didn't need to try as much though (or they weren't willing to listen), as the acting isn't as powerful as I had expected. It's still of a very high quality, but doesn't evoke the same strong emotions as some of the performances in ASHES OF TIME. Leung Chiu-Wai gets the top award for acting though, which will surprise few people. Zhang Ziyi only has a small part, but shows a lot of talent too - nice to see such skill in somebody that still has most of her career ahead of her. Of course, it was Zhang Yimou that discovered and nurtured her talent in THE ROAD HOME.

There are only two disappointments in HERO, for me. One is the special effects, which aren't up to the very latest standards. A little less use of CGI would have made it go a lot further (like in CTHD). The other is the soundtrack, which is really just much too similar to the Crouching Tiger soundtrack. It doesn't fit HERO as well, but it is still pretty evocative and effective - just too similar to CTHD.

I still intend to pick up the extended version of HERO when it's released, to see what Zhang Yimou's ideal vision for the film was. Even running shorter than he really wanted it's a mighty fine film though, and one I have no hesitation in recommending if anybody hasn't seen it yet. If MiramAXE ever do get round to releasing it in the US, I hope it does well.

Was the above review useful to you?
See more (830 total) »

Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for Hero (2002)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Why did Weinstein delay releasing this film in the U.S.? fountaincap
You know, this used to be a film I loved... Tsavo
See more »

Related Links

Full cast and crew Company credits External reviews
News articles IMDb Action section IMDb China section

You may report errors and omissions on this page to the IMDb database managers. They will be examined and if approved will be included in a future update. Clicking the 'Edit page' button will take you through a step-by-step process.