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Sunday, August 7, 2016

Director Zhang Yimou defends casting Matt Damon to lead The Great Wall

Zhang Yimou's Hero and subsequent film House of Flying Daggers are two of the best martial arts/fantasy movies ever made...

Acclaimed Chinese director Zhang Yimou has responded to criticism from an Asian-American actress over the casting of "white man" Matt Damon as his movie's lead, saying the role was never conceived for a Chinese actor.

Damon of the Bourne franchise will star later this year in the $150 million US Chinese-Hollywood fantasy movie The Great Wall, an English-language movie set in China involving menacing supernatural monsters.

Constance Wu, who stars in a U.S. comedy series centered on immigrants called Fresh Off the Boat, posted on Twitter last week: "We have to stop perpetuating the racist myth that a only [sic] white man can save the world."... 
..."Our film is not about the construction of the Great Wall. Matt Damon is not playing a role that was originally conceived for a Chinese actor. The arrival of his character in our story is an important plot point," he was quoted as saying. Zhang said actors portraying the movie's other four "major heroes" are Chinese.

The casting of Damon hasn't sparked any controversy in China, where producers are increasingly entering into co-productions with American and other movie makers to improve their filmmaking techniques, and where the government is pushing for Chinese films to be global hits...

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