Human Interest

He's well used to seeing stars, but now Tsui Hark has a rock-solid reason for a little space travel

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 21 June, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 21 June, 2011, 12:00am

Tsui Hark has a heavenly body. In fact it's astronomical.

Plenty of filmmakers have, like him, cast a constellation of stars in their movies, but Tsui is the first to have an asteroid named after him.

The space rock, numbered 23258, is located between Mars and Jupiter. It was discovered by Hong-Kong-born astronomer Yeung Kwong-yu in 2000 but wasn't certified until recently.

The veteran director, whose hits include A Chinese Ghost Story, Green Snake and the more recent Detective Dee and the Mystery of the Phantom Flame, has now made his mark in the ultimate hall of stardom among other local celebrities such as media mogul Run Run Shaw, Noble physics laureate Charles Kao Kuen and author Louis Cha Leung-yung.

Tsui said he wanted to write a story about the asteroid. 'I thought it was quite surreal, you know, that you can own a star,' he said.

But the long wait for certification had him wondering whether the asteroid had been jolted from its orbit and gone missing.

Tsui said he even planned to visit it some day, 'if it's not too far away'.

Since it's not really possible to travel light years in the blink of an eye, like in the movies, Tsui might be better off sticking to star gazing.