Zhao Wei: Acting as a foster mother is challenging

( Xinhua ) Updated: 2014-08-31 11:30:04

Zhao Wei: Acting as a foster mother is challenging

Chinese actress Zhao Wei poses during the photocall for the movie "Qin'ai de" (Dearest) at the 71st Venice Film Festival August 28, 2014. [Photo/Agencies]

Zhao Wei: Acting as a foster mother is challenging

 71st Venice Film Festival opens

 Zhao Wei: Acting as a foster mother is challenging

Chinese films to add Asian flavor in Venice 

VENICE, Italy -- It was a surprise for fans to see Zhao Wei, one of the most famous actresses in China, who portrays a rustic rural mother with a simple mind in a new movie presented at the ongoing Venice film festival.

In a career of almost 20 years, Zhao has starred in 26 films and 13 TV dramas, working with some of the most renowned Chinese filmmakers.

Notable works include Stephen Chow's Shaolin Soccer, Ann Hui's Jade Goddess of Mercy, Red Cliff I and Red Cliff II by John Woo, Gordon Chan's Painted Skin, The Resurrection by Wu Ershan and Daniel Lee's 14 Blades.

This time Zhao ditched makeup and wore short hair in Qin'ai de (Dearest) by Hong Kong director Peter Ho-sun Chan, as she featured Li Hongqin, a foster mother of a kidnapped baby boy brought home by her late husband.

When the biological parents comb through half China and find their son in the remote village, they realize that he only sees them as strangers. Li is led by a trail of consequences to a fight for the custody of the child.

"When I was asked by Chan to play this character, I though it would be very difficult for me," Zhao told Xinhua in an interview.

"But then I told myself that I should trust such an experienced director, if he believed I was able to make it," she added.

An opportunity to collaborate with the leading director in the Asian film industry was precious, said the actress.

Zhao said she had to work hard to build her character.

"At the beginning I had no image in my mind of this mother from the countryside, and I had to attentively look for her. I reasoned a lot, until I gradually managed to get closer and closer to Li," she said.

In the meantime, the actress had to learn to speak a rural dialect.

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