GIO provides assistance for family of deceased director, plans tribute

GIO provides assistance for family of deceased director, plans tribute

Internationally renowned Taiwan director Edward Yang recently passed away in Los Angeles, California. Chang Kuo-bao, Director of the Government Information Office’s Press Division at the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles, immediately made a trip to Yang’s home upon hearing the news and offered his condolences on behalf of GIO Minister Shieh Jhy-wey. In the coming days, the GIO will cite Edward Yang for his outstanding accomplishments. The GIO will also discuss with representatives from the film industry on how best to recognize Yang’s contributions to cinema during his lifetime.

Yang was one of the most important figures in the Taiwan New Wave film movement of the 1980s. Yang’s films won countless accolades from major film festivals throughout the world, helping to create a new benchmark in the history of Taiwan cinema and providing legendary contributions to the industry. Upon learning of Yang’s untimely passing, GIO Minister Shieh Jhy-wei instructed GIO Deputy Minister William Yih to contact Chang Kuo-bao, Director of the Government Information Office’s Press Division at the Taipei Economic and Cultural Office in Los Angeles, and asking him to provide any assistance required by Yang’s family and to pay condolences. It has yet to be determined where Yang will be buried. The GIO said the decision of Yang’s burial place rests with his family. Regardless of where the funeral is held, the GIO will provide any assistance that is necessary. In addition, the GIO will meet with representatives of the film industry and in the shortest time possible decide on how to honor Yang.

Biography of Director Edward Yang:

Born in Shanghai in 1947, Yang’s family moved to Taiwan in 1949. After graduating with a degree from National Chiao Tung University’s Department of Electrical and Control Engineering in 1967, Yang then enrolled in a graduate program at the University of Florida where he received his Masters Degree in Computer Science in 1972. He then studied film at the University of Southern California for a year, after which he worked as an electrical engineer for seven years in Seattle, Washington. In 1981, Yang returned to Taiwan to write the script and act in the independent production of The Winter of 1905, working with Chan Hung-chih, Yu Wei-yan and Hsu Ko. This film was selected to be screened in the Un Certain Regard section of the Cannes Film Festival. Next, Yang participated in the Taiwan Television Enterprise series produced by Sylvia Chang “Eleven Women.” He won positive reviews for two segments that he directed. In 1982, Yang wrote and directed “Desires,” which was a part of a collection of segments that formed In Our Times. Other directors involved in the production included Ko Yi-cheng, Chang Yi and Tao Teh-chen. Given the creative and innovative methods used in this film, most look upon it as the fountainhead of the Taiwan New Wave movement.

Yang’s first dramatic feature was the 1983 The Day on the Beach, which used a complex narrative structure to discuss women’s issues amid social transformation and the impact on people of a post transition urban space. The film elicited much discussion.

In 1985, Yang filmed Taipei Story, which explored how people are trying to find their way amid a changing society in Taiwan.

In 1986, Yang’s The Terrorizers featured a unique narrative style. The film closely observed people in a modern urban environment. The Terrorizers won a number of international awards. In 1991, Yang filmed A Brighter Summer Day, which also attracted discussion from many circles. Yang was subsequently selected as Best Foreign Director by Japan’s Kinema Junposha.

In 1994, Yang’s A Confucian Confusion won Best Original Screenplay in the 31st Golden Horse Awards. Two years later in 1996, Mahjong was awarded the Jury’s Special Prize at the Berlin Film Festival. A One And A Two, which was made in 2000, again featured Yang’s multi-storyline narrative style, looking at issues from different perspectives. The film examines life in contemporary Taipei. Yang received the Best Director Award at the Cannes Film Festival in 2000 for this masterpiece, cementing his position as an important international director. In 2001, Yang and his wife, Peng Kai-li entered the world of the Internet and on October 24 established the website that focused on web-based animation.

Edward Yang and Hou Hsiao-Hsien were the key figures of the Taiwan New Wave cinema movement in the 1980s. While the styles of the two were quite different, the two frequently encouraged and supported each other. Hou helped to finance the 1985 Taipei Story and was also cast as the lead in the film. To this day, both Yang and Hou have chalked up many cinematic achievements and both have won many international honors. The two directors have created a legendary page in the Taiwan New Wave movement.