The response was immediate when 47-year-old Andy Lau
was asked what about what acting accolades he expects
from his heart-wrenching performance in Peter Chan’s
latest war epic The Warlords.
don’t even think about it,” says the actor
straightforwardly during an interview with MovieXclusive.com.
fact, I feel awkward about it. I will never know what
the judges like. I only know I act for my audiences,”
Lau tells us candidly. The actor-producer-singer has
been awarded the Best Actor at the 2004 Hong Kong Film
Awards for his role in Johnnie To and Wai Ka-Fai’s
Running on Karma. In the same year, he beat Tony Leung
to clinch the Best Actor trophy at Taiwan’s Golden
Horse Awards for acting in Andrew Lau and Alan Mak’s
Infernal Affairs III.
worked with many other acclaimed filmmakers like Zhang
Yimou (House of Flying Daggers) and Jacob Cheung (Battle
of Wits), Lau feels that directors can only gradually
gain confidence from him through the process of shooting
like making friends. You slowly know what the person
is like the first few times you meet. Then you become
more certain about what kind of person he is.
sure the next time I star in a Peter Chan film, the
trust will be there from the beginning,” Lau adds.
his latest big screen outing, Lau plays a charismatic
bandit leader who becomes blood brothers with his lieutenant
(played by heartthrob Takeshi Kaneshiro) and a disgraced
army general (played by action star Jet Li). A clash
of ideals eventually results in the three men turning
against each other.
of the highlights of the movie is a ten-odd-minute battle
scene involving thousands of extras, horses, bows and
arrows – simply put it, a logistic nightmare.
Lau states: “This was definitely the most difficult
part about the movie. I thought the director was going
to use fake horses. But no, we had to ride on real ones!”
working with the award-winning director, the handsome
Kaneshiro and the athletic Li, Lau feels no pressure
good-looking myself, and I can fight quite well too,
so there’s no stress working with them at all,”
laughs the amiable Lau.
on-screen wife is played by the talented 33-year-old
Xu Jinglei, who is a director herself, having won the
Silver Seashell at the 2004 San Sebastian International
Film Festival with her work A Letter From An Unknown
Woman. Like Lau who affectionately calls her “lao
po” (wife) during a press conference held earlier,
Xu feels no pressure working with her director and co-stars
on The Warlords.
three men are very good people,” the beautiful
Xu tells us during a separate interview. “On set,
we are all doing our jobs and we all colleagues. No
one is a star and they are actors like me,” she
also thinks that being a director herself; she understands
Chan’s requirements of her.
credit goes to the director who is able to draw the
performance he wants out from me. I just try my best
to adjust to his needs and not give him too much trouble,”
explains the Beijing-born beauty.
her last film Confession of Pain, Xu played Tony Leung’s
long-suffering wife. However, she does not mind that
viewers think that she seems to be perpetually playing
just happen to act in movies which feature male leading
stars. Let’s just say I’m the female star
among the guys.”
a choice, would Xu prefer directing or acting?
hesitation, she says: “At different points of
my life, I’d like to try different things. If
given a choice, I’d want to direct personal films
and act in commercially-viable ones.”