Zhang Ziyi (章子怡), having been in the entertainment industry for 15 years, has already won multiple acting awards, attended the prestigious Oscars and made a household name for herself. In a recent interview, Zhang gives everyone a closer look at her inner world, revealing much more than a pretty face.
“While filming a fight scene for Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon <臥 虎藏龍>, I didn’t have much martial arts experience back then, so I didn’t know how to relax my muscles. As a result, I injured a tendon in my neck. Then while filming House of Flying Daggers < 十面埋伏>, I was fighting with a heavy stick, but I used so much force on the stick that it flew backwards and knocked me out cold. When I woke up, all eyes were on me,” Ziyi recalled humorously.
“No matter how much the injuries hurt, I had to listen to the doctor’s orders in order to recover. I was afraid that I would suffer from permanent damage! If that happened, I don’t know how I will cope with that. It was finally after suffering from several injuries while filming The Grandmaster <一代宗師> that I decided to not to star in martial arts films anymore. It’s been 13 years since Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon and it was the right time to close that chapter in my book.”
When asked how she deals with the pressure of being a public figure, whether it is to compare against another actress or the criticism of the general public, Ziyi said, “When I was still new in the industry, those words would really hurt me. I’ve cried behind closed doors and then realized that nobody will be able to help me no matter how much I cried. As long as you are still relevant in this industry, your every action will always be scrutinized, so you must be strong enough to face all the rumors and controversy. Before I would feel bad about it, but now, I just laugh it off because it can’t hurt me anymore.”
“There was a period of time where I was really afraid of facing the media, afraid of what they will write to hurt me. There were times where the things I said in an interview were taken entirely out of context. As a result, I’ve learned to protect myself. That’s also why I love to act in films, because I can be away for a long time and not deal with the media. But now, I have realized that the media makes their own assumptions of me because they don’t understand me. They only see me at press events and when I’m walking down the red carpet, so now I have a whole new appreciation for the media.”
Regarding her love life, Ziyi shared, “I was never the type of girl to fantasize about romance, but I do place great importance on love, and family will always be my priority.
If I were to get married one day, I will share the happy news with the entire world. There’s no point in letting the public play a guessing game because it’s a joyous occasion.”
“My birthday this year happens to fall on Lunar New Year Eve. After attending some promotional events for The Grandmaster, I hope to spend my birthday with my family. It’s a Chinese tradition to enjoy a reunion dinner with family and play with some fireworks.”