Chinese film producer and director Zhang Yimou will be the 2011 recipient of the FIAPF Award for Outstanding Achievement in Film in the Asia-Pacific region. It was announced by the Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSA) and FIAPF-International Federation of Film Producers Associations announced on Tuesday.
The awards will be given at the fifth annual Asia Pacific Screen Awards ceremony on Australia’s Gold Coast on November 24.
As the recipient of the FIAPF Award, Zhang Yimou will be inducted into the Asia Pacific Screen Academy, joining fellow Fifth Generation filmmakers Tian Zhuangzhuang and Chen Kaige.
Zhang Yimou began his filmmaking career with Red Sorghum, starring legendary Chinese actress Gong Li in her first leading role. It won a Golden Bear for Best Picture at the 38th Berlin International Film Festival in 1988. In 1990, Zhang’s film Ju Dou became China’s first Academy Awards nomination in the Best Foreign Film category. His next film, Raise the Red Lantern, was nominated the year after.
The Story of Qiu Ju won the Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival and To Live won the Jury’s Grand Prix at the Cannes film Festival. Zhang Yimou’s many films since include Shanghai Triad, The Curse of the Golden Flower, Keep Cool, Not One Less, The Road Home and Under the Hawthorn Tree.
Zhang Yimou headed the jury at Venice International Film Festival in 2007 and served as jury member at the 1993 Berlin International Film Festival. Yale University awarded him an honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts in 2010, describing him as “a genius with camera and choreography”. He also received the Special Grand Prix of the Americas for his exceptional contribution to cinema at Montreal’s World Film Festival in 1995.
His current project, The Flowers of War, set for a December release in China is considered one of the most ambitious films ever made in China and stars Christian Bale and Shigeo Kobayashi.
Zhang Yimou is the fifth person to be honoured by FIAPF through their partnership with the Asia Pacific Screen Awards. Previous recipients are George Miller (2007), Yash Chopra (2008), Isao Matsuoka (2009) and Christine Hakim (2010).