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Ang Lee
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Also known as:An Li, An Lee
Occupation:Director • Producer
Born:October 23, 1954
Birthplace:Pingtung, Taiwan
Spouse:Jane Lin
Children:2
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About
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 other 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 and Gemini Man (2019).
Peers & More
Quentin Tarantino
Actor
James Cameron
Director
Steven Spielberg
Actor
Martin Scorsese
Director
Family
Jane Lin
Spouse
Mason Lee
Son
Haan Lee
Son
Yang Si-Chuan Lee
Mother
Sheng Lee
Father
Khan Lee
Brother
Popular Movies
View All
Gemini Man
Billy Lynn`s Long Halftime Walk
Life Of Pi
Taking Woodstock
Brokeback Mountain
The Hulk
Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon
The Ice Storm
Sense And Sensibility

Did You Know? (3)

  • Martin Scorsesse sought help from the stalwart director Ang Lee to select the shooting locations across Taiwan.
  • Ang Lee turned down the offer to direct Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines (2003).
  • While still struggling to make it big in the career, Lee stayed at home for six years, looking after his children.
  • Personal Quotes (7)

  • "Not taboo - it's just that straight actors still risk their careers commercially and economically. They have to please the crowd - they're movie stars; their image is their industry. It goes beyond acting."
  • "When there is a strong woman character in a story - that always grabs me."
  • "I guess in Hollywood you chart your life by Oscars. You say to each other, 'Remember when that movie won that year? It was 2006. Remember that?'"
  • "Sometimes films ignore other points of view because it's simpler to tell the story that way, but the more genuine and sympathetic you are to different points of view and situations, the more real the story is."
  • "The thing we call critics are not really reviewers, they are not really critics. They don't have the discipline to write what we would term as critique - it's really just reviewers. They have a common man kind of taste. If you watch them overall, they are not different from the box-office. That's my view."
  • "I grew up pretty peacefully, in that Eastern way. You easily solve problems, believe in harmony. Reduce conflicts, take orders until one day you give orders."
  • "The source of all the material comes from nothingness, illusion is working more on things you can prove. That's the principle, the essence of life, it is actually an illusion, not immaterial. That's worth pursuing. So illusion is not nothing. In a way, that is the truth."
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