Veteran Ip wins best actress in Venice

PUBLISHED : Monday, 12 September, 2011, 12:00am
UPDATED : Monday, 12 September, 2011, 12:00am


Veteran Hong Kong movie star Deanie Ip Tak-han was named best actress at the Venice Film Festival for her portrayal of an ageing domestic servant in Ann Hui On-wah's film A Simple Life (Tao Jie).

The award, a first for a Hongkonger, was a crowning achievement for the 63-year-old Ip, who returned to the big screen for the first time in a decade to take the film's leading role.

The movie also stars Canto-pop heartthrob Andy Lau Tak-wah.

An emotional Ip said after receiving the award: 'It's great. I haven't had my heart beat so heavily for so long, because I think it was more than 10 years ago that I had my best supporting actress award in Taipei.'

She won that Golden Horse Award for the 2000 film Crying Heart.

A Simple Life is the 10th film in which Ip and Lau have starred together. It is about the lifelong relationship between a film producer (Lau) and his housekeeper, Ah Tao (Li), who has cared for several generations of his family.

After Ah Tao suffers a stroke, they reverse roles and he looks after her, eventually realising that she has been more than just a servant but a much loved member of the family. The story is based on the life of the film's producer, Roger Lee Yan-lam.

Secretary for Commerce and Economic Development Greg So Kam-leung congratulated Ip yesterday, saying: 'Her outstanding achievement again proves that the effort by Hong Kong filmmakers is globally recognised, and is a great encouragement to the Hong Kong film industry.'

Mainland director Shangjun Cai won the best director award for Ren Shan Ren Hai (People Mountain People Sea), based on a true story about a man searching for his brother's killer.

The Russian film Faust won the Golden Lion for best picture. It is the latest interpretation of the tragedy by Goethe. The award for best actor went to Michael Fassbender for his role as a sex addict in Shame.