Tian Zhuangzhuang (simplified Chinese: 田壮壮; traditional Chinese: 田壯壯; pinyin: Tián Zhuàngzhuàng, Mandarin pronunciation: [tʰi̯ɛ̌n ʈʂu̯ɑ̂ŋʈʂu̯ɑ̂ŋ]; born April 1952 in Beijing, China) is a Chinese film director and producer.
Tian was born to an influential actor and actress in China. Following a short stint in the military, Tian began his artistic career first as an amateur photographer and then as an assistant cinematographer at the Beijing Agricultural Film Studio. In 1978, he was accepted to the Beijing Film Academy, from which he graduated in 1982, together with classmates Chen Kaige and Zhang Yimou. The class of 1982 collectively would soon gain fame as the so-called Fifth Generation film movement, with Tian Zhuangzhuang as one of the movement’s key figures.
Tian’s early career was marked both with avant-garde documentary infused films (On the Hunting Ground (1985), The Horse Thief (1986)) to more commercial fare (Li Lianying: The Imperial Eunuch (1991)). In 1991, Tian began work on a quiet epic about one of modern China’s darkest moments. This film, The Blue Kite (1993), would eventually result in Tian’s nearly decade long exile from the film industry, an exile he returned from with Springtime in a Small Town (2001). Throughout the 2000s, Tian Zhuangzhuang returned to the fore of Chinese cinema, directing films like the biopic The Go Master (2006) and the historical action film The Warrior and the Wolf (2009). Since his banning after the release of The Blue Kite, Tian has also emerged as a mentor for some of China’s newest film talents, and he has helped produce several important films for these new generations of directors. [Wikipedia]