MASSIVE PREMIERES!! Grandmasters is a HIT!! anyone watch?[2013.01.07] CRITIC: THE GRANDMASTERS RESEMBLES ASHES OF TIME
The Wong Kar Wai directed, Tony Leung Chiu Wai starred THE GRANDMASTERS (YUT DOI JUNG SI) after 14 years from planning to production finally announced its completion as it will be released tomorrow. A much more relaxed Wai Jai yesterday attended a Beijing press conference. The 3 year production period made him thoroughly suffer, no wonder he was somewhat in disbelief that it has already been completed. Zhang Ziyi even described the production process as "getting on a pirate ship", as she decided to never make another kung fu film. Film critics had more praises than criticism, some even described THE GRANDMASTERS as along the same vein as ASHES OF TIME (DUNG CHE SAI DUK). When Ip Man moved his Chinese suit to change into a suit, he was IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE (FA YEUNG NIN WA)'s Chow Mo Wan possessed.
THE GRANDMASTERS will be released in the Mainland tomorrow. Wong Kar Wai yesterday led Leung Chiu Wai, Zhang Ziyi, Chang Chen and others to the Beijing press conference. Song Hye-Kyo who was rumored to be upset at Wong Kar Wai's schedule was absent.
Some film critics after watching the film wrote aside from the perfect visuals, the poetic expression of the story was along the same vein as ASHES OF TIME. When Ip Man removed his Chinese suit to put on another suit, he was actually "Chow Mo Wan possessed".
The 50 year old Wai Jai talked about the 3 year long production. "Ultimately I didn't start practicing kung fu until I was 47. I broke my arm twice, each time I needed several months to recover and wasted the fruits of my previous training. Wasn't that very painful?" The earliest released rainy night fight scene was shocking visually, behind it Wai Jai actually suffered. "After 30 over night shoots, I told Wong Kar Wai director I am done, I can't take anymore; the director said fine fine fine, just like that. Finally we shot for another week, after which I thought I had pneumonia. I actually had bronchitis and lay in bed for 5 days. For half a year I worked at night for a long time. After the wrap I needed to adjust. I went to bed at midnight and got up at 4 or 5AM. I went running before the sun came out. (Carina) Lau Ka Ling asked where I was going, during that period my body was truly very tired."
Wai Jai admitted that at first he was somewhat in disbelief that the film has wrapped. "On the day of the wrap I thought I would be especially excited, when the director said 'Leung Chiu Wai's final shot'. After the shoot I wasn't too happy, maybe I felt that later I still had work like voice work and promotions. I was somewhat in disbelief still. In my experience, we could have had two wrap banquets and still go back to shoot. 3 days later I could receive a call, 'A scene could actually be even better, come back and fix it', the possibility still exists." He said that after returning to Hong Kong and settling for four or five days, he was much more relaxed. "Actually the pressure was tremendous all along, I was very tensed. Wong Kar Wai on the set was very relaxed, he was never in a hurry. We were the ones who were." Donnie Yen Chi Tan's IP MAN will soon make its third installment. THE GRANDMASTERS was often made fun of as taking too long to make. Wai Jai said, "When you have fried chicken you still have to wait! The two movies are different. We shot for so long because we needed such a long time to be able to achieve it, so I don't have anything to say." He said that he needed to rest and would not make a movie for now.
Zhang Ziyi played the Eight Diagram palm master, she said that two nights ago after watching the film in its completed form for the first time and did not sleep all night. "Due to health and character consideration, I decided from now on I would not make another kung fu film. I am older, during training this time I realized I had many old wounds. My body was in a state of overload." Zhang Ziyi joked that the production process was like "getting on a pirate ship". "After 3 years of training and being with the character, I sensed the character's troubled fate".
Wong Kar Wai was often asked why it took so long. He said, "With such good actors supporting me, if I have the time I am willing to keep shooting. Although I was reluctant to part with it, everyone has to see it. THE GRANDMASTERS displays the beauty of the Chinese people."
Max Zhang Jun had a train station fight scene with Zhang Ziyi. Viewers of test screenings praised it as the bright spot of the entire film and a display of power. Zhang Jun said, "The pressure was enormous on this film, the fighting was real unlike before. Every school and every style were very clear cut."
Wong Kar Wai was known for taking his time to be concise. Back then when he spent 5 years to complete 2046 it was already classic, no one expected that THE GRANDMASTERS from planning to official release would take 14 years. At first Wong Kar Wai and Jeff Lau Chun Wai discussed THE GRANDMASTERS story, in 2001 the script was officially registered, in 2003 the film announced its official production. For ten years most of the time only the buzz of the production could be heard. In 2008 Raymond Wong Pak Ming made IP MAN with Donnie Yen Chi Tan, leading to a "twin incident".
IP Man was released and became a hit, even followed the momentum with a sequel. However Wong Kar Wai insisted on completing his research before beginning production and asked Leung Chiu Wai, Zhang Ziyi, Chang Chen to study martial art. In July 2009, Wai Jai while sparring suffered a bone crack, during the shoot he even had a fracture. The film 3 years ago began to heat up in its production, but the rainy night fight scene in the trailer alone took 30 nights, gave Wai Jai bronchitis and made him sick for 5 days after the shoot. The film even had two wrap banquets, in the end Wai Jai, Zhang Ziyi and others were called back to continue additional shoots. Thus before the film is released, Wai Jai still does not believe it truly has wrapped up production.
Playing Leung Chiu Wai's wife, Korean star Song Hye-Kyo is working on a Korean television series in Korea and thus was absent. However she still sent a video for the premiere.
In the video she apologized for being unable to attend the premiere and revealed that she was a fan of Director Wong. She said, "Spending 3 years to work on THE GRANDMASTERS with Director Wong Kar Wai, it has been a very happy period of time for me. It includes working with excellent actors, I have learned a lot, gained valuable experience. I have always been the director's fan. Although my character this time isn't very key, being able to participate in the director's film is already a honor for me."
Meanwhile, the Wong Jing and Manfred Wong (Man Jun) produced, Daniel Chan Yee Heng directed YOUNG AND DANGEROUS RELOADED (GOO WAT JAI: GONG WU SUN DIT JUI) will be released on the same day as THE GRANDMASTERS. Yesterday Wong Jing took a jab online at Wong Kar Wai for spending 7 years to finally complete this film. "Congratulations Brother Wong Kar Wai for finally finishing this film that I too really want to see. The big film that the Cannes Best Director spent 7 years, over 400 units and 300 million on! However for its Hong Kong promotion, does it need to compare itself to a film that new director Chan Yee Heng spent a month and a half, 20 some units and several millions to make? Yee Heng has the chance to compete with Wong Kar Wai in the slot, it is his honor! However nothing is certain at the box office, we shall wait and see!" Posted by hktopten [2013.01.08] TONY LEUNG CHIU WAI'S HEART ACHES OVER "MISSING" SCENES
Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Zhang Ziyi, Chang Chen and Max Zhang Jun yesterday continued to promote the film THE GRANDMASTERS (YUT DOI JUNG SI) in Beijing. Today the team will return to Hong Kong for the premiere. Zhang Yimou who was in Beijing also showed his support for THE GRANDMASTERS and met with Wong Kar Wai, Zhang Ziyi, and Chen Daoming after the premiere for a brief chat and photos. Wai Jai yesterday revealed after the premiere that his heart ached the most over many "missing" scenes.
Yesterday Wai Jai, Zhang Ziyi, Chang Chen and Zhang Jun all wore sunglasses for their interview. They said that they wanted to salute the director. Wong Kar Wai revealed that the film's complete version was 4 hours, finally he cut it down to a 130 minute version. For the completeness of the story he had to make choices and cut many actors' scenes.
Wai Jai had the most screen time but also had the most scenes removed. Suffering the most "wounds" from editing, he said that every time after watching Wong Kar Wai's movies he felt the same way as he questioned where did his scenes go? Every time he had to watch the film two or three more times before he was able to get into it. Then he would think where did Zhang Ziyi and Xiao Shenyang's scenes went? Why would scenes that had finished voice work were go missing? Wai Jai admitted that he would remember these few years for a lifetime, aside from learning something new he also created a new character. In addition he has been a kung fu fans since childhood, he never imagined that he would study kung fu in his 40s. However he still enjoyed it and thought it was a lot of fun. He said that he has never been so positive and optimistic in a Wong Kar Wai movie, as he was full of positive energy.
In the same manner, Zhang Ziyi said that she thought a scene in which she expressed her inner loneliness was very sad but very powerful would be kept. Her hope finally died when the end credit came out, as it was truly removed; however, she understood that with only 2 hours and 10 minutes, Wong Kar Wai indeed had a hard time with the decision. As an actor she like the audience had no idea how Wong Kar Wai's ending would be until the end.
Zhang Ziyi also appeared on a Mainland television program. She demonstrated her well practiced Eight Diagram palm and won thunderous applause from the audience. She recalled that she had no complaint despite the trainer's hellish training. Everyone was concerned with her marriage, Zhang Ziyi admitted that she will definitely wed and even revealed that her best dish was egg and tomato. Posted by hktopten [2013.01.09] TONY LEUNG CHIU WAI MAKES DONATION TO BUDDHIST CONSTRUCTION
Wong Kar Wai last night led Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Zhang Ziyi, Chang Chen, Max Zhang Jun and others to THE GRNADMASTERS (YUT DOI JUNG SI) Hong Kong premiere. Wai Jai and Zhang Jun both had their wives Carina Lau Ka Ling and Ada Choi Siu Fun in tow. Wong Kar Wai who has always appeared with sunglasses during the drum ceremony rarely removed them perhaps due to confetti and revealed his eyes.
THE GRANDMASTERS was accused of resembling IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE (FA YEUNG NIN WA). Wong Kar Wai explained that he already had the idea for the film as early as 1989, even earlier than MOOD. "The preparation took years because I had to visit seven or eight provinces for martial art masters." Zhang Ziyi did not conduct any interview. Song Hye-Kyo was in Korea but sent a video.
Wai Jai broke his arm twice for this film. A magazine reported that he donated 400,000 yuan RMB to construct a 12 meter tall Goddess of Mercy statue in Jiangsu. He said, "Ka Ling has always donated to Buddhist statue constructions. Charity should follow the heart and not announced, but it has nothing to do with praying for his safety. I have been injured more from skiing than from movie shoots." Ka Ling reportedly donated a romance tree with their names on it in Suzhou. Wai Jai said, "That's interesting, I don't know too much about it." Wai Jai did not believe that Song Hye-Kyo was upset that her role was reduced. "Wong Kar Wai wouldn't be at odds with anyone, I too had my scenes cut." He described after three years in production the final half a month exhausted him thoroughly, as hard as the last 10 minutes of a marathon. As for Donnie Yen Chi Tan stating that he would watch THE GRANDMASTERS, Wai Jai said, "I am not afraid of comparison, I have my own interpretation angle."
The 5 month pregnant Choi Siu Fun wore 4 inch high heels to support her husband. Earlier she also had a miscarriage. Zhang Jun said, "Now it's fine, she can jump. She is too energetic." In the film his fight scene with Zhang Ziyi was praised. Zhang Jun said that when he watched it he too was very pleasantly surprised. Posted by hktopten [2013.01.10] THE GRANDMASTERS OPENS WITH 30 MILLION YUAN
《一代宗师》1月10日在台宣传，特别举行映后记者会，梁朝伟、张震到场出席。梁朝伟大谈咏春，独家解读“心灵出轨”，并自曝曾泪洒香港试映会。TUNGSTAR/文并图标签: 一代宗师 no Zhang Ziyi :/
Wong Kar Wai's THE GRANDMASTERS (YUT DOI JUNG SI) two days ago was released in the Mainland and made 30 million yuan RMB, the best Mainland box office for a Wong Kar Wai film. Back then 2046's total box office was only 30 million yuan.
THE GRANDMASTERS two days ago officially opened in the Mainland, the first day box office was 30 million yuan RMB. It was the best Mainland box office performance for a Wong Kar Wai film. In 2004 2046's Mainland cumulative box office was only 30 million. In 2007 MY BLUEBERRY NIGHTS after a week only made 10 millon yuan.
THE GRANDMASTERS had completion from LOST IN THAILAND, CZ12 (SUP YI SUN CHIU) and other hit films, but because they have been in release for some time THE GRANDMASTERS has an advantage. On its opening day it occupied 38% of the national showings and opened with 30 million yuan; however, its competition will only grow stronger with SKYFALL on the way. Posted by hktopten
Looks like a huge push from the studios, how will he be recieved overseas - where the REEL MONEY will be made?