BEIJING • Ying (Shadow), the latest production of Chinese film-maker Zhang Yimou, hit the big screens in China from Sunday.
China's National Day Golden Week holidays began yesterday.
The film, starring Deng Chao, Sun Li, Zheng Kai, Hu Jun and Guan Xiaotong, is a martial arts film set in China during the period of the Three Kingdoms (AD220 to AD280) that tells the story of a "shadow" man - a body double for royals and aristocrats.
Zhang said the story was inspired by Japanese director Akira Kurosawa's 1980 film Kagemusha (Shadow Warrior) and his curiosity about the lives of body doubles in Chinese history.
Zhang said the film was different from his previous productions, which were mostly bright-coloured, with the main palette of the film this time being black and white, similar to that of a traditional Chinese painting.
The film made its world premiere in the Out of Competition sector at the 75th Venice Film Festival last month, where Zhang was presented the Jaeger-LeCoultre Glory To The Filmmaker Award.
The prize is dedicated to "a figure who has left a particularly original mark on contemporary cinema", the film festival's organisers said in a statement.
Zhang is the only director to have won all the most important prizes of the Venice Film Festival in less than 10 years, the organisers said.
Born in Xi'an in Shaanxi province in 1950, the celebrated director has won the Venice Golden Lion twice: in 1992 for The Story Of Qiu Ju - which also garnered Gong Li a Coppa Volpi prize for Best Actress - and in 1999 for Not One Less.
He also won a Silver Lion in 1991 for Raise The Red Lantern.