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| Sunday, March 20, 2005

Other than his movies screened and special book published, this year's Hong Kong International Film Festival Actor In Focus Andy Lau also organise seminars. In the special book, more than 20,000 words are from in depth interviews. Andy discuss about his showbiz career and share the changes and experience of his 20 years in showbiz. Here, we take a look at his collaborations with 3 directors - Johnnie To, Wong Jing and Andrew Lau.

Johnnie To - I adores him, he adores me

"When we were shooting Running Out Of Time, everyone never remembered that I worked with Johnnie before." In the 20 years of Andy's showbiz career, he collaborate with Johnnie several times. Up to today, they trust each other and are best of friends, however they're not in good terms with each other when they first collaborate. When shooting A Moment of Romance, he told me: "There are 5 songs in the movie, I'm also a singer, should have let me sing one of them. He answered me: Andy, if you put in more effort on a certain matter, I think you'll fare better results."

From Andy, Johnnie is a forceful director, if he thinks it's correct, he'll refuse to make any changes. "There was one word that I could not ever said in my dialog, but he's willing to take 60 takes for that till I manage to say the word."

When they first collaborate, there was cases of "tough meets tough". "When I have a tiff with him, the helmet is the reason as when I remove it, I pull some of my hair. What's so special of pulling your own hair when removing helmet? Everyone is like that, he doesn't allow me to complain and said that I wanted to look handsome. "You're not an idol, remember it's like this". He'll sometimes will and will not give me space. When we're shooting the alighting from car, he'll shout Cut and ask me to remove the helmet and blow my hair. After I look good then will get into position. From what I feel, it's meaningless."

Andy clearly understand that director and actors had to trust each other and build a good relationship as on eof them need to take the first step. "In the past, I try my best to trust him, as I express my confidence, even its shooting in the rain wearing just my underwear (as in Casino Raiders II), I still follow instructions. When it comes to A Moment of Romance III, I discuss with him in Mainland China, I said: "I really don't know how to be friends with you. I feel that if just friends, I adore you and you adore me, then we'll have good productions." "

"From then onwards, I trusted him more and likewise for him." We settled our differences and have a good relationship. "I and Johnnie had collaborate for more than 10 years, we know the importance of trust. If an actor don't trust you, everything you say will not be good to the ear. In recent 5-8 years, Johnnie changed alot, I told him that it'll be good if I know you now, then we won't have differences of the past."

Wong Jing - He's a good man

"In order to survive in the movie industry, you must chose one director that will did well in the box office, therefore I shoot alot of his movies." In the later of part of 80's, Andy Lau shot comedy and triad movies, collaborate with Wong Jing many times. According to him, they're rather familiar with each other which started from the days of A Moment of Romance. Then Wong Jing was helping preparing his father's retirement movie, Andy then suggest to him to film something similiar to Romancing Star to allow his father to earn more. "But he refuse as his father is a quality film maker, we can't use Romancing Star for his last movie... he's actually clear of his position in this circle. He treat people well, simple said, I feel that he's a good man."

"We did collaborate again, then it comes to lost moment during Full Throttle where I feel that none of the directors trusted me, thinking back, I trusted Wong Jing the most." Therefore Andy went to discuss with Wong to film a movie that people will remember that this is a movie that's of Andy Lau, then it's the birth of Century of The Dragon.

"Up till today, I still feel that the movie is good. Maybe it didn't earn much money, thus not so quality, but Wong had confidence in me, as he asked me to do the editing. I personally did the editing. He asked me if this is what I wanted, I told him yes. Under that kind of investment and recieved such good response. This sort of response gave me the chance to shoot Running Out of Time."

Andrew Lau - required completed script

When he's still a cameraman, Andrew Lau had already collaborate with Andy, when they first met, it should be Wong Kar Wai's As Tears Goes By, later Andrew bacome a director and the movies that they collaborated includes Dance of A Dream, The Duel and among them, the successful movies are Infernal Affairs and Infernal Affairs III which won Andy the Best Actor in Golden Horse Film Awards.

"Andrew need a very complete script, if there's aren't, his ability of creating a new character on the spot is weaker than Johnnie To, but what's he's good is that he can capture the characterisc of the character, can maintain till the end."

Andy feel that Andrew had another plus point to Johnnie. "Maybe his shifu is Wong Jing, if the boss want a director like him, they can rest assured that there won't be any problems with his movies, but for Johnnie, one will be more surprise as he's more self-centred. From the view of business, Andrew's level is higher, he's more well verse in using the finanical and potential available to make it prefect. From the view of arts, Johnnie garns more points. Nobody is prefect, if you cab balance them, they'll prefect directors!!"

news from: Hong Kong Economical Daily News