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Interview Gordon Chan, from The Big Heat to A-1
Project 1:99, SARS 1/1 - Page 12
Author(s) : Thomas Podvin
David Vivier
Date : 13/1/2005
Type(s) : Interview
 Intext Links  
People :
Fruit Chan Gor
Gordon Chan Kar Shan
Peter Chan Ho Sun
Johnnie To Kei Fung
Eric Tsang Chi Wai
Tsui Hark
Wong Kar Wai
Movies :
Project 1:99 Waiting For Luck
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Page 11 : A-1 Headlines, Anthony Wong
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Page 13 : Triads, police, Asian market

HKCinemagic: Talk about your participation to Project 1:99 (along with Johnnie To, Fruit Chan, Tsui Hark, Peter Chan, etc.) and for which you did the segment Waiting For Luck.
Gordon Chan: Did you see that? I was one of the initiators of the project. When the SARS came, we all knew we needed to do something. That was such a depressing moment for HK. Leslie passed away, SARS came [Ed.: in 2003]. So it was like the end of the world. We were [preparing] the [HK] Film Awards that day [Ed.: Gordon Chan was on the board of directors of the Hong Kong Film Awards Association] and we had a hard time trying to grab everybody and say “we need to go on.” So we went on with the Film Awards, even if the SARS was a threat, and…
HKCinemagic: It was hosted by Eric Tsang who did a very touching speech this year.
Gordon Chan: I wrote that speech! (General laughter). We got support and we managed to convince everybody to let us go on with the Awards, because we were supposed to cancel all events. Me and Eric Tsang went to the committee to convince them we needed to go on. [See our interview with Eric Tsang]

Eric Tsang

So the world was trembling down, people were looking up to us. Tsui Hark and I and Peter Chan were the initiator for this [1:99] project. We needed to do something. That started the whole project. We went to the government, luckily we got the money and we started shooting.

The HK Film Directors' Guild is a very special place for me. We are a part of HK. These [filmmakers] have so much passion. Every time, when something happens we know we need to come up with something. Like the big concert we had a couple days ago for the Tsunami [Ed.: A concert to raise funds for the victim of the Indian Ocean Tsunami Disaster in Asia in December 2004, the concert was held in HK early 2005]. We are just getting used to it, like whenever something happens, we know we need to do something.


Hong Kong Film Directors' Guild

HKCinemagic: Did the 1:99 project help HK?
Gordon Chan: It helped HK, it was such a comforting thing for people to see: “Look at them, there are all there, they’re coming up with stuff, do a lot of comedy.” But actually, the whole environment wasn’t that pleasant. It was so scary. I was among one of those who refused to wear these masks and said we should live normally, shouldn’t be scared. And that was part of Waiting for Luck. We were saying we don’t need you guys, we can take care of ourselves. But the whole process was fun. The “1:99” name came from Wong Kar Wai who didn’t managed to shoot his film [Ed.: His short was cancelled at the last minute and doesn’t feature in the released film] but he came up with the ideas.
HKCinemagic: His idea was scary, he wanted to shoot in the hospital where the outbreak was first discovered, but had to give up.
Gordon Chan: Yes, because it wasn’t safe yet. My original idea was to shoot in this Amoy building, this big private complex building, where a lot of people died and the whole complex was just quarantined. I stayed there for a week, but I couldn’t simply come up with any ideas that were comforting, because it was so sad.

We were so happy because we saw all these directors trying their best to do something for everybody else. And we did it at such a low cost. My film only cost around HKD 20,000.

Gordon Chan

HKCinemagic: No directors wanted to be paid for this.
Gordon Chan: Nobody ever got paid in the end. We got a lot of sponsorship from everybody, helping us all. Like the special effects were free, the stars were free. We just phoned and everybody came.
HKCinemagic: That’s when you realised the industry could work together.
Gordon Chan: Yes, we were pretty good at that. The HK film industry is so small and family style, we all grew up together. And we went through a lot, like 1997…We are so used to work together [in this tight knit community].
Page :  1  2  3  4  5  6  7  8  9  10  11  12   13  Top
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Page 11 : A-1 Headlines, Anthony Wong
Next :
Page 13 : Triads, police, Asian market

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