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Choice of weapons: Tsui Hark's Seven Swords
Press Conference 2/5 - Page 3
Author(s) : Thomas Podvin
Date : 26/10/2005
Type(s) : Interview
Food for thought
 Intext Links  
People :
Lu Yi
Tsui Hark
Donnie Yen Chi Tan
Zhang Yimou
Movies :
Seven Swords
< Previous
Page 2 : Group questions
Next >
Page 4 : Tsui Hark / Zhang Jinchu


Question : Which character from wu xia novels would you like to be?

Lu Yi: Guo Jing, at first he was a poor boy and didn't know kung fu but in the end he becomes a master. Such progress is very interesting and attractive for a kid.

Donnie Yen: On the contrary Guo Jing is the character I dislike most. It's because everyone knows he is a nice person, even to bad people. Apparently in society such people cannot survive. I prefer Ling Huchung [unfortunate character set up by good side of society, just by coincidence he met people from bad side. His sifu is a bad guy but everyone think the opposite].
Question : Have you read this famous kung fu novel by Liang, “Seven Swords of Mount Tian”?
Donnie Yen: No, I don't have too much time, and didn't think it was very good to do so. If before acting you read the original novel, you will have ideas in advance, then it will limit your acting.
photo hkcinemagic.com©
Lu Yi and Donnie Yen (photo hkcinemagic.com©)
Question : The film is very violent. For the next part of the story, your role will be more violent?
Donnie Yen: I don't think it's very violent. In all wu xia movies or TV series, the fights are very violent and common audience are used to it. This time Tsui made it different from the common pattern, because he wanted to make something new. Yes
Question : You also cooperated with Zhang Yimou for Hero . Your characters are different.
Donnie Yen: Personally I prefer the style of Tsui. In Seven Swords, there is no special technique to process action. In Hero, Zhang Yimou showed a lot of beautiful fights, but it's not very real. For a movie, the most important thing is how you show the story between different characters, rather than making things beautiful.
Question : You've already worked with Tsui, has he changed?
Donnie Yen: It's true I already work with him for some times; I feel he is still himself. Before he had more ideas, and sometimes his pace was very quick and you couldn't follow, as he thinks too far. This time he slows down. He is the same person, but he uses different way to show the same stuff. His attitude and ideas for movies have never changed.

Question : How about you?

Donnie Yen: It's true this time it's different. First I have never played a movie in a total foreign language [Korean]. Also, before the priority was action in my prior roles in kung fu movies, but this time, the first priority is how to show this character's personality rather than action. For me the most important was how to act this role and deliver a proper performance. At first Tsui Hark wanted me as action director, we talked a lot together. I was very excited, but I didn't have time, so I couldn't make it.
Question : Although you have an important role in the movie there are so many roles, you aren't the lead part.
Donnie Yen: In fact in Seven Swords there are 11 main roles, each one is independent and each one is very complete, and complicated. It was very difficult for Tsui to deal with them, that's why he had to shorten the cut of 4 hours to 2 hours 30 minutes. I am lucky as for this role, it's still complete, and he kept most of my acting scenes. But we had to shorten it.
Question : You are famous for romantic roles, here it's all action.

Lu Yi: True, I am a horse boy and I fight. I also felt very surprised when the director asked me to do this part, I read the script and found it was different from movies I did before. He is very daring to let me act in the movie.

photo hkcinemagic.com©
photo hkcinemagic.com©
photo hkcinemagic.com©
photo hkcinemagic.com©
Question : You have a couple of love affairs.

Lu Yi: In fact I am a loser at this point. I woo two girls but they all change their mind. The director chose me for his own reasons, may be he thinks I am suitable because he can feel I am a naughty boy.

Question : You also have a special swords.

Lu Yi: To use my sword you have to be in union with it, in the end giving up your life and choosing justice. It's the destiny of this role, the reason he uses this sword is decided by the character.

Question : Any idea about the potential way kung fu movie will develop into?
Donnie Yen: I am very positive at this point. I don't think it should have a certain pattern for that; the audience should encourage kung fu movies to develop in different ways.
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