Monday, September 5, 2011

The Grandmasters: Wong Kar Wai's Ip Man Biopic

In the past few years the legend of Ip Man, one of the most iconic martial arts masters, has been brought back to life by kung fu legend Donnie Yen in Wilson Yip’s films Ip Man 1-2 and in The Legend Is Born – Ip Man. Ip Man is famous as the father of Wing Chun kung fu and the martial arts instructor of Bruce Lee. Now Wong Kar Wai brings to the big screen another version of the legend in his film Grandmasters.  

The film will be the fourth recent film that tells the story of the Wing Chun grandmaster, Ip Man. Wong Kar Wai's Ip Man biopic should be a radically different take on the legend than provided by Yip's Ip Man films, which put Ip Man up on an idealistic pedestal. 

The film, Wong's first since 2007's My Blueberry Nights, stars Tony Leung, Zhang Ziyi, Song Hye-kyo, Chang Chen, Zhao Benshan, Julian Cheun Chi-lam and MMA fighter Cung Le. 

Martial arts movie producer Ng See-yuen is producing the film with martial arts choreography by legendary Yuen Woo-ping. Together, See-yuewn and Woo-ping have contributed to excellent kung fu movies including Snake In The Eagle’s Shadow, Drunken Master and Once Upon A Time In China II.

Wong Kar-wai  born 17 July 1958) is a Hong Kong Second Wave filmmaker, internationally renowned as an auteur for his visually unique, highly stylized films. Wong was listed at number three on the respected British Film Institute's Sight & Sound UK Critic's Top Ten Directors list of modern times.

The Grandmasters will be Wong’s third film in the martial arts genre after directing the wuxia film Ashes Of Time (1994), which was re-edited and re-released as Ashes Of Time Redux in 2008. Previously, Wong wrote and produced Jeff Lau’s wuxia comedy The Eagle Shooting Heroes (1993). He’s best known worldwide for arthouse dramas such as In The Mood For Love. The Grandmasters is scheduled for release in 2012.

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