Houston Community News >> Festival Changes Ang Lee Film's Country of Origin

7/27/2007-- The organizers of the Venice Film Festival yesterday changed the country of origin for Taiwanese director Lee Ang's (李安) new film Se, jie (Lust, Caution, 色, 戒) from "China-US" to "Taiwan" on the festival's official Web site following a protest from Lee's office.

When the films that were selected for competition at the 64th Venice Film Festival were announced yesterday, Lee's film and director Lee Kang-sheng's (李康生) film, Bangbang wo aishen (Help Me Eros 梆梆我, 愛神), were among them.

Taiwanese flavor

Taiwanese director Alexi Tan's (陳奕利) film Tiantang kou (Blood Brothers, 天堂口) has been chosen as the closing film, giving the festival a particularly strong Taiwanese flavor.

A report yesterday in the Chinese-language United Evening News said that when the selected films were first listed on the film festival's official Web site two days ago, the country of origin for Lee Ang's film was listed as "China-US," which upset his Taiwanese fans.

Lee's office in New York received a wave of concerned telephone calls.

Lee Ang's assistant, Li Liang-shan (李良山), immediately contacted the film festival's organizers to clarify the issue.

The registration form for his film had listed Taiwan as the film's country of origin.

Country of origin

According to the newspaper, Li said that the film had received US financing and was shot in China, but the three major European film festivals -- Venice, Cannes and Berlin -- all list the director's home country as the country of origin for a film. As Lee is a citizen of Taiwan, the film should be listed as Taiwanese, Li said.

Tan's film is listed as originating in "Taiwan/China/Hong Kong," Lee Kang-sheng's is listed as "Taiwan," and Jiang's as "China/Hong Kong."   

(Contributed by Taipei Times)