Giona Nazzaro, Olivier Assayas and Tsui Hark on stage in Rome
After the film Tsui Hark and Olivier Assayas returned to the stage in Sala Sinopoli for a late night Masterclass moderated by Giona Nazzaro, in which the director began by explaining that he had started out wanting to make documentaries and had fallen, almost by accident, into making a wuxia martial arts television series. The discussion moved quickly through his career, from his early horror movie Butterfly Murders, to his controversial social commentary about delinquent youth Don't Play with Fire, which to his dismay was heavily censored at the time of its release, through to his hugely influential landmark special effects fantasy film Zu Warriors from the Magic Mountain. Asked what drives his constant innovation, he remarked that as life is short he wants to leave something lasting behind. At the close of the evening I was one of the lucky few who managed to get an autograph and am now the proud owner of a Once Upon a Time in China DVD signed by the legendary Tsui Hark.
To see a few moments from the Tsui Hark Masterclass and award ceremony watch the video below (or click here to watch on YouTube).