After a 13-year lapse, Michelle Yeoh (楊紫瓊) will starring in the sequel to Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon <臥虎藏龍>. The blockbuster film won numerous international awards when it was released in 2000. However, director Ang Lee (李安) will not return for the sequel.
Citing that wuxia topics have been over-explored in films, Ang Lee decided to not direct the movie. Producer Harvey Weinstein has approached director Ronny Yu (于仁泰) of The Bride with White Hair <白髮魔女傳> fame to helm the movie. It has also been reported that John Fusco who wrote the screenplay for Jet Li’s (李連杰) The Forbidden Kingdom (功夫之王) will pen the script.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon had earned $128 million USD at the American box office, while earning more than $213 million USD globally. Among the many awards it received, it also swept four Academy Awards, becoming the highest-grossing foreign-language film to do so. Not an easy feat considering it was made on a budget of only $17 million USD and with dialogues wholly in Mandarin.
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon was based on the fourth book of a five-part epic wuxia-romance series, called Crane-Iron Series <鶴鐵系列> written by the late author, Wang Dulu (王度庐). There were rumors circulating in the mid-2000s that Columbia Pictures was interested in making a prequel, likely based on the second book, Precious Sword, Golden Hairpin <寶劍金釵>. However, all plans halted in 2005 when a legal tussle between Columbia Pictures and The Weinstein Company ensued, resulting in the books’ rights finally awarded to the latter.
Iron Knight, Silver Vase
It is reported that the sequel of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon will be based on the fifth book of the pentalogy, Iron Knight, Silver Vase <鐵騎銀瓶>. Since the story will revolve around Yu Shu Lien portrayed previously by Michelle Yeoh, she was invited to film the sequel. Yesterday, at a promotional event in Beijing, Michelle Yeoh admitted that she will soon film for the sequel of Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, but refused to leak additional details.
Aside from Michelle, there has been no news whether the original cast such as Chow Yun Fat (周潤發) and Zhang Ziyi (章子怡) will return to film for the sequel. With Zhang Ziyi declaring that she will not film another wuxia movie after the rigorous filming of The Grandmaster <一代宗師>, chances are slim that she will return.
Filming for the sequel will begin in May this year and fans may look forward to an early 2014 release of the yet-to-be-titled sequel.
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