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| Friday, August 11, 2006

Last year, Andy Lau's Focus Films invested in 6 directors in Focus: First Cuts, among them was Mainland China's Ning Hao whom directed Crazy Stone collected $15 million in the box office within 2 weeks which exceeded X-Men III: The Last Stand. The movie opens in Hong Kong cinemas yesterday, Andy invited Ning Hao to Hong Kong for celebration and was interviewed by Metro Radio together.

Andy whom was always being told to stop doing business manages to obtain flying results this time round, he quipped: "Finally I could wipe off my poor record and break even, finally I'm a successful businessman, it's more happy when compared to being paid $6 million for a movie, I wanted to praise Daniel Yu for spending time to recommend me directors, he's the real nurturing director teacher, I'm just a boss that invest money." With this movie, Ning Hao's career had up a level whom had previously directed the popular Mainland China's drama serial Marry In Chinese Fashion before being noticed by Andy with his Mongolian Pingpong thus invited to join Focus: First Cuts.

In the interview, Andy revealed why he invested in movies, he said: "I'm a newcomer before, I saw that the movie industry is very quiet and heard that many people is jobless, big name directors were waiting for big production before they take up the offer, thus lack of new directors, they don't have the chance, at least now they have an avenue to let people know their name, it's like a singing talent quest, there need to be given chances to go onto the stage to sing."

Crazy Stone can be considered as a comedy with some black humour elements, some quoted it as a sad movie after watching it, Andy says: "When I watched it for the first time without subtitles, I already laughed from start to the end, when I watch the premiere at Shanghai for the second time, this movie is so artistic and also commercialise, I'm impressed with Ning Hao, I'm impressed with his attitude and thoughts."

Andy quipped: "When I first met Ning Hao, he show me the diamond script and asked for $6 million as production fees, I refused and told him that I'll only be giving $3 million per project, he showed me a stone script, it was funny and I gave him the go-ahead to develop, thus now it had become a "jade"!"

Andy added that he initially wanted to cameo in Crazy Stone, he said: "Initially I wanted to cameo as a policeman, but then I was shooting Battle of Wits, I kept a moustache, thus it would be problematic, in addition to my leg injury, thus I didn't cameo, I'm so sorry thus I made up by singing the theme song."

Currently, Ning Hao was being referred by Mainland China's media as the new generation Feng Xiaogang, he quipped: "I don't think so, I'm just doing my own job and other things doesn't matter, Feng Xiaogang is my senior, I respected him." Andy then added: "I feel that his style is similiar to Woody Allen, but Feng Xiaogang did called me to sing praise of him. I'll encourage him to enjoy the current success, seldom the movie that I invested made money! Haha!"

Andy admitted that Crazy Stone did made some money as its post-production cost only $5000,000, Andy said: "Together with My Shoe Fairy and I'll Call You, it had already covered my $25 million investment in the new directors, no money was lost in the other movies, the whole project is earning money, it will be used for the second round for more new directors."

When asked if he would collaborate with Ning Hao again, Andy quipped: "Ning Hao had already inked a contract with a foreign company, he will have his own developments, I've mine, but we will still collaborate if there's a suitable script."

In addition, when interviewed by Metro Radio, Andy expressed thatb due to the shooting of The Protege, he had not be able to exercise for more than 2 months, he says: "As my character in the movie is 50-years-old, there was a scene where I need to do a diabetes injection myself, the director does not wish to see abs muscle thus I've not been exercising for 2 months and had to take more meat."

Andy and Anita Yuen will set off to Thailand for 1 week of location shooting on 18 August, despite pregnant, Anita will still go for location shooting but she would be shooting in holiday resorts whereas Andy need to go to the mountains. He expressed that Anita looked cuter when she's pregnant, he quipped: "Almost everyday I want to touch her belly to see if I can feel the baby, people was saying that if it's a daughter, the mother will become pretty, looking at Anita, she's more likely to borne a son."

With regards to being interviewed by Commercial Radio, Andy revealed that during the shooting of Full Throttle, he was feeling down and had dis-agreement with Derek Yee thus quarrel during the shooting, he says: "I asked him everyday why whatever I act or said was wrong, if it's so tough why did he cast me in the movie." When told that Derek was sick during the shooting thus affecting his mood, even the lead were Chow Yun Fat or Tony Leung Chiu Wai, Derek would still scold them. From that incident, Andy learnt how to understand people's difficulties.

In addition, the Golden Bauhinia Awards will be held this Sunday where Andy, Tony Leung Kar Fai, Chapman To, Eason Chan and Simon Yam would be vying to become the Best Actor. Andy expressed that the judging panels would be similiar to those in the Hong Kong Films Awards, Tony would stand a high chance of winning but he preferred Eason or Chapman to win. As he had won the Best Actor award at Golden Bauhinia Awards before, of course it would be okay if he wins again. He hope Wait 'Til you're Older could win the Best Script award and he would reach 90% happiness, if he win Best Actor, it would be 100%.

news from: Apple Daily News, SingTao News, MingPao, Sun News, Ta Kung Po, Wei Wen Po