Ang Lee

  • Director, Producer

Oct 23, 1954  in Pingtung, Taiwan

Also Known as: An Li, An Lee

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An Oscar Award-winning director, producer, screenwriter, and editor, Ang Lee is known for making films like Sense and Sensibility, Hulk, Brokeback Mountain, and Life of Pi. Counted amongst the best filmmakers of the contemporary cinema, Lee was honored with Order of Brilliant Star by the Republic of China. He became the first Asian to win an Academy Award for Best Director, for Heath Ledger, and Jake Gyllenhaal starrer Brokeback Mountain, in 2006.

Early Life
Born in Taipei, Taiwan, Ang Lee completed his graduation from the National Taiwan College of Arts in 1975 and then moved to the United States to receive a bachelor's degree in Theatre/Theater Direction at the University of Illinois, and a Masters Degree in Film Production at New York University.

Personal Life
In 1983, Ang lee tied the knot with Jane lin, a microbiologist and they have two sons, Haan, born in 1984, and Mason, born in 1990. Mason, Lee's younger son appeared in The Hangover Part II, as Teddy.

Movie Career
Lee's maiden film was Pushing Hands, a 1992 feature in which an old Chinese martial arts teacher shifts into the city of New York to live with his son and daughter-in-law. The movie follows the relationship of the old man, who can't speak English, and his daughter-in-law, who can't speak Chinese. Things get tricky when misconception and bitterness kick in and the aging man realizes how he must adapt to his new surroundings before he comes to terms with his new life. His next two films: The Wedding Banquet (1993), and Eat Drink Man Woman (1994), together with Pushing Hands were considered a sort of trilogy, as they all dealt with the conflicts arising between older and younger generations.

In 1995, Ang Lee directed a period drama, Sense, and Sensibility, based on Jane Austen's novel of the same name. Lee's first mainstream American film, Sense, and Sensibility received accolades worldwide and established Lee as a world-class director. The movie received seven Academy Award nomination, winning the award for Best Adapted Screenplay for Emma Thompson, who was also one of the lead stars in the film, along with Kate Winslet and Hugh Grant. He then directed films like The Ice Storm (1997), Ride with the Devil (1999) Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000), and Hulk. Subsequently, Ang Lee directed Heath Ledger, Jake Gyllenhaal, and Anne Hathaway in the romantic drama film Brokeback Mountain. Chronicling the sexual and emotional relationship of two men, the movie enjoyed immense critical and commercial success. For this independent, small-budget film, Lee won the Academy Award for Best Director. In 2013, seven years later, the director received his second Oscar for drama film Life of Pi, based Yann Martel's 2001 novel of the same name.
His 2016 projects as a filmmaker include Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk, starring Joe Alwyn, Kristen Stewart, Garrett Hedlund, Vin Diesel, Steve Martin and Chris Tucker.

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