Ang Lee Quotes

 

Sexuality is a big issue, but there are others – how much you commit to a relationship, to social obligation, to honesty and being honest with yourself.

 

The father figure is something I love, but also suffocate from and want to work against.

— Ang Lee

I think the American West really attracts me because it’s romantic. The desert, the empty space, the drama.

— Ang Lee

A movie is really provocation. It’s not a message, it’s not a statement.

— Ang Lee

There’s a level of sophistication of filmmaking that’s mind-boggling. Anything you need for your movie, there’s an establishment that can make it happen really fast.

— Ang Lee

Sometimes films ignore other points of view because it’s simpler to tell the story that way, but the more genuine and sympathetic you are to different points of view and situations, the more real the story is.

— Ang Lee

I did a women’s movie, and I’m not a woman. I did a gay movie, and I’m not gay. I learned as I went along.

— Ang Lee

In the past I’ve made movies that were pretty universally liked. You can’t really hate them. You can discard them, but you can’t really hate them.

— Ang Lee

On a Chinese film you just give orders, no one questions you. Here, you have to convince people, you have to tell them why you want to do it a certain way, and they argue with you. Democracy.

— Ang Lee

When there is a strong woman character in a story – that always grabs me.

— Ang Lee

When I sent those scripts, that was the lowest point of my life. We’d just had our second son, and when I went to collect them from hospital, I went to the bank to try and get some money to buy some diapers, the screen showed I’ve got $26 left.

— Ang Lee

When I see something I like, that’s all that counts. What they use, how they get there, I never bother them.

— Ang Lee

When I have a full schedule like that, I don’t see myself sitting there for a couple of months, doing the research, going through a painful process, it’s just not my thing anymore.

— Ang Lee

Usually with this genre the first thing that happens is a good fight sequence to show that you’re in good hands. So we broke that rule. I think a lot of that comes from the western audience.

— Ang Lee

To me, Ennis stands for the conservative side of America. He’s the biggest homophobe in the whole movie – culturally and psychologically – but by the time he admits his feelings, it’s too late.

— Ang Lee

The way I go about a lovemaking scene is that we will talk about it during the rehearsing time.

— Ang Lee

The most mysterious feminine factor, the existence that we men, we don’t know. It’s woman. It’s feminine. That’s what the sword is about. That’s the symbolic meaning of the sword.

— Ang Lee

So many times you see beautiful lovemaking scenes with a lot of exposure or an awkward lovemaking scene, but I think it’s very rare that you see it private.

— Ang Lee

Sexuality is a big issue, but there are others – how much you commit to a relationship, to social obligation, to honesty and being honest with yourself.

— Ang Lee

Now I’m kind of established as a director, I much prefer directing to writing.

— Ang Lee

Not taboo – it’s just that straight actors still risk their careers commercially and economically. They have to please the crowd – they’re movie stars; their image is their industry. It goes beyond acting.

— Ang Lee

My first instinct was to cast as close to the short story as possible, but then I realized that I needed actors who could go for it and that they had to function well as a couple in a love story.

— Ang Lee

Meanwhile, the Ice Storm was still in development, And that was something I really wanted to do, and frankly I don’t think I was ready to do a big production like this.

— Ang Lee

I wanted to shoot straight, mainstream, somehow off-beat. Not only realistic West, which is quite unfamiliar to the world’s population – even to a lot of Americans.

— Ang Lee

I took the name Green Destiny from – well there is such a sword called Green Destiny. It is green because you keep twisting it, it’s an ancient skill, you keep twisting it and knocking it and twisting it until it is very elastic and light.

— Ang Lee

I think the book struck me in a few ways that I thought very interesting to pick it as my first martial arts film. It has a very strong female character and it was very abundant in classic Chinese textures.

— Ang Lee

I think people are universal.

— Ang Lee

I am a shy person.

— Ang Lee

Directing, I get all kinds of inspiration. It’s working with people. It’s a lot more fun.

— Ang Lee

I don’t lead a Hollywood lifestyle.

— Ang Lee

In Taiwan, I’d be like Michael Jordan walking down the street.

— Ang Lee

I was very quiet, very shy and docile.

— Ang Lee

My culture doesn’t regard acting highly.

— Ang Lee

I think a movie is a media that is evoking feelings.

— Ang Lee

I think doing period piece is easier, because after a certain distance, everybody is equal, I think. The relative contemporary is harder. I think that’s the way it is.

— Ang Lee

I think each movie-making process is a very exhausting and satisfying and fulfilling experience for me.

— Ang Lee

I like to do drama, something about life that could be disappointing.

— Ang Lee

I have two sons in America, and all they care about in Chinese culture is Jackie Chan and Jet Li.

— Ang Lee

I try to please everyone.

— Ang Lee

I look at American movies, the big muscles, and try to apply that to Chinese film-making.

— Ang Lee

I don’t like to deal with studios.

— Ang Lee

For a filmmaker, it’s a rare chance to do a personal film on a big canvas.

— Ang Lee

I don’t think the Hulk is a superhero. He’s the first Marvel character who is a tragic monster. Really an anti-hero.

— Ang Lee

I feel that everyone has a Hulk inside, and each of our Hulks is both scary and, potentially, pleasurable. That’s the scariest thing about them.

— Ang Lee

I’m a big boy now, and I have to deliver.

— Ang Lee

No matter how widely spread out the films are, how different, you still are you.

— Ang Lee

I grew up pretty peacefully, in that Eastern way. You easily solve problems, believe in harmony. Reduce conflicts, take orders until one day you give orders.

— Ang Lee

I feel like all of my characters now take this congested situation, they clash, and from there you purge yourself.

— Ang Lee

If there’s something that can be formulated, regulated, give you security, then nobody would lose money. Every movie would be successful. And that’s certainly not the case.

— Ang Lee

I do like challenge.

— Ang Lee

I’m a storyteller.

— Ang Lee

I think I can work with any type of actor.

— Ang Lee

The source of all the material comes from nothingness, illusion is working more on things you can prove. That’s the principle, the essence of life, it is actually an illusion, not immaterial. That’s worth pursuing. So illusion is not nothing. In a way, that is the truth.

— Ang Lee

I am not particularly religious. But I think we do face the question of where God is, why we are created and where does life go, why we exist. That sort of thing. And it is very hard to talk about it these days, because it cannot be proven. It is hard to discuss it rationally.

— Ang Lee

I hate to think life is just facts and laws.

— Ang Lee

I think life without spirit is in the dark, it is absurd.

— Ang Lee

These days I’m mostly familiar with two parts of L.A.: one is movie culture, and the other is Asian culture. The Westside is work, and the Eastside is Chinese – which means my friends.

— Ang Lee

The L.A. weather is a lot like Taiwan’s, where you don’t observe four seasons, so the years can pass and you don’t feel a thing.

— Ang Lee

I guess in Hollywood you chart your life by Oscars. You say to each other, ‘Remember when that movie won that year? It was 2006. Remember that?’

— Ang Lee

When I grew up, in Taiwan, the Korean War was seen as a good war, where America protected Asia. It was sort of an extension of World War II. And it was, of course, the peak of the Cold War. People in Taiwan were generally proAmerican. The Korean War made Japan. And then the Vietnam War made Taiwan. There is some truth to that.

— Ang Lee

My father was the center of the family, and everyone tried to please him.

— Ang Lee

As artists, we like night more than day sometimes.

— Ang Lee

Emotions serve characters’ purposes. That is their motivation.

— Ang Lee

There’s only one movie in my career I’ve had regrets with cutting it shorter, and I think some scenes maybe I shouldn’t have cut.

— Ang Lee

3D is quite a lot more advanced in animated movies; for live-action movies we’re just taking baby steps, we’re just in the beginning.

— Ang Lee

I hope people don’t compare 2D and 3D because 3D’s new, it’s unfair to compare to 2D which is really sophisticated, even when we’re jaded about it. 3D just began, give it a chance, let the equipment and projection system catch up and be better, let the price go down, let more filmmakers get a hold of it more easily.

— Ang Lee

I think I prefer 3D to 2D now.

— Ang Lee

I’m not a romantic. In life I didn’t have much experience with romance.

— Ang Lee

I’m such a late bloomer.

— Ang Lee

Every movie is unknown.

— Ang Lee

My mother loves me and everything goes well. I have no conflict with her, so that’s not dramatic.

— Ang Lee

I’m a shy human being.

— Ang Lee

I’m just a pretty regular dad.

— Ang Lee

I’m a drifter and an outsider. There’s not one single environment I can totally belong to.

— Ang Lee

My cultural roots are something illusive.

— Ang Lee

Sometimes, you have to get angry to get things done.

— Ang Lee

I have a lot of repression. So repression is what I make movies about.

— Ang Lee

I’m aware of what’s missing from my life.

— Ang Lee

What is really a stretch to me is to make quick decisions.

— Ang Lee

It’s not a pleasure torturing actors, although some of them enjoy it.

— Ang Lee

Some actors give you what you want. Some you have to make do what you want.

— Ang Lee

I think a lot of people do big movies not because they are talented artists but because they can function in the circumstances.

— Ang Lee

When I’m not working, I get very down, but when I am working, I get very immersed in it.

— Ang Lee

Thinking back to those earlier days, I felt I was weak when I wasn’t making movies, and then when I was, I thought I was weak as a family member.

— Ang Lee

Many times when you make a movie, it feels like your biggest mistake. But even if a film isn’t a hit, you shouldn’t view it as a mistake.

— Ang Lee

For six years, from 1985 to 1991, I felt pretty weak and useless.

— Ang Lee

I’m not a master of films, I’m rather a slave.

— Ang Lee

When something possesses me, I go ahead and do it.

— Ang Lee

Fighting for identity is something that is very much in my life.

— Ang Lee

I think that at heart I am an old-fashioned Chinese, really I am.

— Ang Lee

I find it hard to deliver straightforward things.

— Ang Lee

Making movies is a way of understanding myself and the world.

— Ang Lee

You become the movie you are making.

— Ang Lee

I don’t have a superpower.

— Ang Lee

Sensitivity and money are like parallel lines. They don’t meet.

— Ang Lee

I’m actually living my life with the material I choose to work with.

— Ang Lee

I don’t have incredible knowledge about films or of filmmaking history; I’m not that kind of person.

— Ang Lee

You can get rich or famous by doing the same thing.

— Ang Lee

The thing we call critics are not really reviewers, they are not really critics. They don’t have the discipline to write what we would term as critique – it’s really just reviewers. They have a common man kind of taste. If you watch them overall, they are not different from the box-office. That’s my view.

— Ang Lee

I’m still a novice student.

— Ang Lee

Over the years Woodstock got glorified and romanticised and became the event that symbolised Utopia. It’s the last page of our collective memory of the age of innocence. Then things turned ugly and would never be the same again.

— Ang Lee

After making several tragic movies in a row, I was looking to do a comedy, and one without cynicism.

— Ang Lee

I like to think I’m un-categorisable.

— Ang Lee

I grew up pretty much prevented from knowing anything from Communist China except that they were the bad guys that stole our country.

— Ang Lee

I don’t care about writing really.

— Ang Lee

When I started out, nobody gave me scripts, so I had to write.

— Ang Lee

Economically, it’s more expensive to make movies. I hope digital movies change that.

— Ang Lee

My hometown was one of the major U.S. Air Force bases.

— Ang Lee

Film study was considered disgraceful by my father.

— Ang Lee

Summer blockbusters are very expensive to make. They have things that have to be expensive, such as 600 effects shots or CG characters that have to go a certain way, or a film design that is different but expensive.

— Ang Lee

The fear factor actually brings the genuineness.

— Ang Lee

Everyone in the gay community doesn’t think alike.

— Ang Lee

I don’t know if I make the best gay films.

— Ang Lee

I think great romance needs great obstacles and textures.

— Ang Lee

Kids don’t even read comic books anymore. They’ve got more important things to do – like video games.

— Ang Lee

I had to test a new terror in myself.

— Ang Lee

I had to find my way of translating the excitement you get when you’re reading comic books to the big screen.

— Ang Lee

Americans are hidden dragons to me.

— Ang Lee

The woman’s perspective is like the dark side of the moon: it always exists, but it is never exposed, at least not in my culture.

— Ang Lee

In my culture, there’s a tradition that when you’re in an overwhelming situation and you don’t know what to do, you put yourself in a woman’s shoes.

— Ang Lee

I’m not macho, I’m not a Mel Gibson sort of person.

— Ang Lee

I’m quite lazy.

— Ang Lee

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *