Happy Birthday Stephen Chow

At this year’s Annecy festival, Pearl Studios announced that Stephen Chow was attached to direct an animated feature film based on the classic Monkey King story.

Chow is my favorite working movie director. He started as an actor in kids TV, then moved to features, and eventually began directing. His work is very character driven and full of slapstick and special effects. If you have never seen Kung Fu Hustle, Shaolin Soccer, CJ7, or God of Cookery, you have missed out.  While many directors start out with fantastic vision, only to weaken over time, his work has steadily grown in energy and style. He was cast to play Kato in the Green Hornet remake, but left over creative differences.  If he had been in it, I would have seen the movie.  Here are some quotes.

“Right from the beginning of my work, I wanted to capture a mass audience. And I love the unusual: you never see dancing villains. For me, there`s a fine line between comedy and drama; so it`s not just played for laughs. There`s a little romance in this story, too – something for everybody.”

“I used to cry when I watched Chaplin`s films. It was from him that I learned about the role of the underdog. And because I`m also from a poor family, this kind of thing moved me and I found that it also worked for the audience because most of them are like me – ordinary guys.”

“As many people have pointed out, the scene in ‘Kung Fu Hustle’ where the Landlady was chasing after me resembled the Roadrunner, … I loved to watch cartoons and read comic books when I was small. In fact, I still watch and read a lot of them now. They give me great ideas.”

Here is the scene.

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