'Teacher' Ge You may be heading to the other side of camera
He's won acting awards galore at home and abroad, and his name is now invariably suffixed with the title laoshi (teacher) every time he's mentioned at a public event. A veteran he might be, but Ge You (pictured) may soon be trying his hand at something he's never done before - directing a film.
Having just inked a three-film deal with Hong Kong's Emperor Motion Pictures, the 54-year-old Beijing-born thespian says it's possible he will finally go behind the camera after spending nearly all his career in front of it.
'People asked me to direct a film about a decade ago, but I said no because there's too much responsibility handling that,' he said after the signing ceremony at the Hong Kong Jockey Club yesterday.
The circumstances are somewhat different now, however, as he and his team will have complete creative control over the projects emerging out of his collaboration with Emperor. Albert Yeung Sau-shing's company has promised to invest HK$500 million in the productions, which are slated to materialise over the next five years.
Gee said that like most actors he had been passive in the past.
'When people brought me screenplays I decided whether I would do them. But now I'll be more active in looking at what I can do - and to be more aware of the financial returns they bring.'
Ge said he first sat down with Emperor's representatives six months ago to discuss plans for a longer-term collaboration. It was right after Ge's last film for Emperor, Let the Bullets Fly, made history by becoming the highest-grossing Chinese-language film released on the mainland, with the company claiming to have generated more than 700 million yuan (HK$855 million) in ticket sales during its theatrical run early this year.