Director Wu Ziniu
Born in 1953, Wu Ziniu is native of Leshan
District in Southwest China's Sichuan
Province. He entered Leshan's art school in 1972. After graduation, he
joined the local song and dance ensemble, both creating pieces and performing.
In 1978, he passed the entrance examination to Beijing
Film Academy and studied in the Director Department, during which he also
published some novels.
After his graduation in 1982, he became a director in
Xiaoxiang Film Studio, where he directed The Candidate, his first film
that reflects the interests and delights of children's life of that time. In
1984, he acquired the Fourth Golden Rooster Award, China's leading film award.
In 1988, he directed three movies: Between Life and Death, Evening Bell,
and To Die like a Man, which helped him take home the Ninth Golden
Rooster Award in 1989. Among the three works the most well known is Evening
, which won the Silver Bear Award at the 19th Berlin
International Film Festival in Germany.
Generally, the most representative of Wu's works are
those with the theme of war and peace, such as Die Xue Hei Gu
(Blood-shedding Black Valley), Evening Bell, Between Life and Death, Evening
Bell, To Die like a Man, and Don't Cry,
Nanjing (Nanjing 1937).
All of those works embody Wu's thoughts on war, the relationship between
human and war, and his desire for no more wars, as well as his longing for
The movie Die Xue Hei Gu demonstrates the
spiritual and psychic struggles of people when facing death in the face of wars.
With courageous sincerity, Evening Bell expresses the scars left by
war. Don't Cry, Nanjing
not only simply
portrays the bloodiness and cruelty of the Japanese invaders, but also sheds
light on the damage of war towards the peoples of both China and Japan.
In 2001, Wu made the movie Hero Zheng Chenggong , which portrays the life of
the 17th-century Chinese general Zheng Chenggong who drove the Dutch from Taiwan.
The film, known as the Chinese edition of Braveheart, is a tale about faith and
belief, loyalty and betrayal.
In 1999, Wu directed National Anthem
, which is about the life of Tian
Han, the lyric writer of the Chinese national
anthem. Like many patriotic intellectuals and artists in the 1930s, screenwriter
Tian Han passionately opposed the Japanese occupation of Northeastern China, and
directed a series of films that were regarded as part of the "golden period" of
Chinese cinema. For Children of the Revolution
, Tian wrote the patriotic song "March of the
Volunteers," which inspired a nation. In 1949, the song became the national
Sparkling Fox is a modern tale about a somewhat absurd
friendship. When a city-weary and jobless film projectionist moves to the woods
to rediscover himself by hunting for the legendary sparkling fox, he finds
himself competing against a hostile peasant hunter seeking his fortune by
hunting for the very same animal. Together, they gradually find something truly
meaningful. The film won the International Jury Special Nomination Award at the
44th Berlin International Film Festival in 1994.
Hero Zheng Chenggong
Besides the movies, Wu has also directed a number of TV series that are also
very influential in China.