Oscars: Martin Scorsese Interviews 'Grandmaster's' Wong Kar Wai (Video)

EXCLUSIVE: It is hard to believe, at least from my point of view, that the great Wong Kar Wai, perhapsgrandmaster China’s greatest living filmmaker has never once been nominated for an Academy Award. In fact, incredibly, his latest film The Grandmaster is only the second time one of his films has even been submitted in Oscar’s foreign language film race (the first was in 2000 for the classic, In The Mood For Love but for some reason it didn’t make the final five). Hopefully the Academy will rectify the oversight as Grandmaster, the director’s first true venture into the world of cinematic martial arts, is one of the nine finalists in the Academy process that will lead to the choice of the five 2013 nominees for Best Foreign Language Film. In fact that process is underway this weekend as a panel of 20 high profile Academy members in Los Angeles and 10 more in New York are viewing all the movies and will make their selections. The final five will be announced with other Oscar nominees on Thursday.  The film was nominated for an ASC Cinematography award earlier this week for its stunning visuals.  I had the rare opportunity to interview the director for the Palm Springs International Film Festival‘s Talking Pictures series last weekend where he revealed he shot the movie on film. Remember that? But he knew the end was near and his digital career would soon begin when Fuji sent him the last film stock during the long shoot accompanied by a letter that said it would be the last shipment. No more film.  The results on screen are certainly worth it and none other than Martin Scorsese agreed to “present” the film once he saw it in order to bring it an even bigger audience in North America. On Wednesday evening in New York City Scorsese sat down to interview Wong Kar Wai at the Lighthouse theatre. Here is that unique conversation between two “grandmasters” of cinema:

Related: Wong Kar Wai On China’s Growth, Kung Fu, Oscar Contenders & Bruce Lee

  1. This film is so very beautiful to look at, but has been edited into confusing narrative mess IMO.

    1. Total agreement. The U.S. / international version has been edited (Harvey, was that you again?) to suit exhibitors, not anybody who loves and appreciates great cinema. Watch it as it was made, if you can, or pass on by.

  2. IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE is a wonderful film. A classic. I just wonder how this director, or any director, is allowed the opportunity to shoot and shoot and shoot and keep shooting with no approved script, schedule or budget constrictions.

  3. “If you have a good script, you can do a miserable job directing and still get a pretty good movie, whereas if you have a bad script, you can do a brilliant job directing and it will hardly make a difference.” – Woody Allen

    Next time you studio bosses decide to be talked into a script (Runner Runner) please remember this.

  4. The final version of this film is definitely one of the top five foreign language films of the year if not the best. WKW is a master filmmaker.

  5. Nope. He previously wrote and directed ASHES OF TIME, and was writer and/or producer on a number of other martial arts films, including SAVIOUR OF THE SOUL and EAGLE-SHOOTING HEROES.

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