News > View News Item

Director Peter Chan Takes on Martial Arts With ‘Wu Xia’
Posted on Thu, Nov 11, 2010 at 6:33 am
by IDMA Editor

Actress Tang Wei on location in Yunnan province for ‘Wu Xia’ - photo by We Pictures

Since his directorial debut 19 years ago, Peter Chan has become one of Asia’s leading filmmakers, cranking out box-office hits while filling his office shelves with best-director awards.

He began with a string of popular Hong Kong comedies and dramas in the 1990s, then ventured to Hollywood to direct the 1999 romantic comedy “The Love Letter,” which starred Kate Capshaw and Tom Selleck. In China in 2005 he directed the musical “Perhaps Love” with Takeshi Kaneshiro and Zhou Xun, followed in 2007 by “The Warlords,” a period war epic starring Jet Li, Andy Lau and Mr. Kaneshiro. Now, he’s turning his hand to the martial-arts, or wu xia, genre. The Wall Street Journal caught up with Mr. Chan on the set of his latest film, itself titled “Wu Xia.”

Director Peter Chan on the set of his latest project - photo by We Pictures

Q: How do you plan to “redefine” the martial-arts genre with “Wu Xia”?

A: All our period films seem to be mixed with martial arts and action. But period films actually have many different genres—love stories, thrillers, crime dramas—and I think we never see these period films in complete authenticity. We never see the details of life, and we never feel like we’re transported in time.

Q: What attracted you to the story?

A: “Wu Xia” is about a man who’s in hiding, but his identity is unraveling and he needs to deal with his past. I always believed that wu xia and the gangster genre are pretty similar. Once you step into that world you can never get out.

Q: What’s driving higher production costs in the Chinese film industry?

A: There’s only one thing that drives up costs—demand versus supply. The camera operator that we’ve worked with three times has doubled his salary in every movie I’ve worked on with him. There are too many movies that need good people.

Q: How is working in China compared with Hollywood?

A: We still have the ability to improvise, which is not very possible in Hollywood because it’s so expensive to make films in America. The studios developed a system to be in complete control of production to make sure everything is scientifically calculated. It’s just like any big corporation.

Online Store Front: Gear, DVDs and More
The I Do Martial Arts School Program
Join I Do Martial Arts on Facebook
Follow I Do Martial Arts on Twitter
Open Black Belt World Championships
INSERT INTO http_requests (RequestDateTime, RequestMicroTimePart, RequestorUserId, RemoteIP, ReferingPage, RequestedURL, ScriptName, QueryString, PostDataPageAction, GetDataCourseId) VALUES ('2019-06-26 05:56:27', '0.18980000', '0', '', '', '/news/view_news_item.php?newsId=195', '/web/news/view_news_item.php', 'newsId=195', '', '' )
Incorrect integer value: '' for column 'getDataCourseId' at row 1