- Mini Bio
- Name: Ziya Zhang
- Born: 9th February 1979, Beijing, China
- Alma mater: Central Academy of Drama
- Occupation: Actress, dancer and model
- Years active: 1996 to present date
- Marriage resume: Wang Feng 2015 to present date
- Height: 5' 5" 1.65m
- Notable roles: Jen Yu in Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon (2000) and Sayori in Memoirs Of A Geisha (2006)
- Trivia: In the early 2000's she was famously labelled as one of the "Four Dan Actresses" along with Zhao Wei, Zhou Xun, and Xu Jinglei as these golden girls of Chinese cinema were recognised as the most bankable Chinese actresses of their generation
"After Crouching Tiger I got a lot of offers, but I turned them down because they were all victim roles"Zhang Ziyi
"Only in Hollywood! I couldn't believe the first day I walked on the set. Rob Marshall walked me like a tourist round the set. It took 40 minutes, so how big was that"Zhang Ziyi
"The whole subject is a land mine. Maybe one of the reasons people made such a fuss about "Geisha" was that they were looking for a way to vent their anger"Zhang Ziyi
"I enjoy being an actress a lot, because I can feel different women's lives. I have the chance to feel like a geisha one day, and on another day maybe a scientist"Zhang Ziyi
"I really appreciated Geisha, because it allowed us to show the world what kind of actors we are and what kind of characters we can play - not just action, kick-ass parts"Zhang Ziyi
"You know, I never think I can become an actress. But it happened. Not because I dreamed it, but because it happened"Zhang Ziyi
"In China, we don't consider someone truly beautiful until we have known them for a long time, and we know what's underneath the skin"Zhang Ziyi
"I want, through my roles, to express the parts in the hearts of Chinese women that they feel unable to let out"Zhang Ziyi
"I don't like kick-ass stereotypical roles. I already turn a lot down, even when they promise me a lot of money"Zhang Ziyi
"I've been lucky, because I've had great characters to play. Now I really want to work with good directors"Zhang Ziyi
"Chinese women are much more modest than American women when it comes to clothes. We tend to show less flesh"Zhang Ziyi
"Being a star is easy, but being a respected actor is not. It’s something you have to constantly work on"Zhang Ziyi
"For Western women, it's much easier to be yourself. If you want to do something, you just go and do it"Zhang Ziyi
"Even though I've done Hollywood films, I still don't think of myself as a Hollywood actress"Zhang Ziyi
"It's my first time in a lead and I have to speak English! In a Japanese accent"Zhang Ziyi
"I embrace hard work. I’m not afraid of it"Zhang Ziyi
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Zhang Ziyi Biography
Zhang Ziyi is one of the most critically acclaimed actresses to emerge out of mainland China and gain a firm thespian foothold in Hollywood as well as Mandarin speaking movies. Her first role of any significance was the character Zhao Di in the award winning 1999 romantic drama "The Road Home".
While Ziyi's first major role scored some minor success with awards at the 2000 Berlin Film Festival it paled into insignificance when compared to her next starring role in "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" in 2000 that gained 10 Academy Award nominations which raised her profile to earn international recognition and celebrity status.
"Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon" grossed over $200 million USD worldwide and its commercial success was matched by its critical acclaim as it gathered a slew of Golden Globes, Bafta's, Academy Awards and various other worldwide accolades that numbered 40 in total.
Zhang's first taste of Hollywood was in the 2001 movie "Rush Hour 2" and there followed numerous roles leading up to her next blockbuster appearance starring in "Memoirs of a Geisha" in 2006.
Geisha was a lavish production but for Ziyi it allowed her to explore and extend the boundaries of her acting talent as her shimmering portrayal of Sayori saw the softer and more sensuous side of her acting range. Her natural grace and elegance coupled with her stylish poise paint an indelible picture in the mind as she oozes with the confidence of an actress at the top of her game.
Away from the silver screen she is good for a quick quip too, so here is my compilation of 16 of the best Zhang Ziyi quotes
Quotes About Zhang Ziyi
The critic Kaori Shoji recognised her acting talent:
"Zhang wedges a line between her brows that could be a sign of displeasure, petulance or inward plotting. Her true emotions are impossible to read"
Tomio Geron theorised her look and why she was a successful actress by saying:
"Zhang is tough, elegant, tall and thin"
The Tatler editorial director Charlene Co sat in awe whilst waiting to interview Zhang Ziyi:
"I can’t decide whether I’m more taken with her delicate features and porcelain-like skin or her piercing gaze. I think to myself, 'Nothing escapes this one, that’s for sure, and how on earth can she be 40?'"