The Message
 

Zhang Hanyu

Assembly
Final 99 Days
The Equation of Love and Death
Day Under Clouds
Look for a Star
Zhang Hanyu

Zhang Hanyu as Wu ZhiguoZhang Hanyu (张涵予) was born on December 19, 1964 in Beijing and lived through the Cultural Revolution witnessing the tumult first hand inside the capital. In high school he became a production intern for the nascent China Central Television (CCTV) station and got involved with voice dubbing foreign TV shows into Mandarin for domestic re-broadcast. The experience led Zhang to seriously consider acting as his life’s vocation, which he pursued by attending the Central Academy of Drama in 1984.

Until recently, few Chinese viewers recognized the actor’s face but a great many were certainly familiar with his dulcet voice. For many years Zhang was one of China’s premier voice actors dubbing Western blockbusters, animated films/anime, and foreign TV shows into Beijing Mandarin for mainstream audiences loathe to subtitles. Major roles hitherto have included the voice of Donald Duck for all Disney releases in China, Oliver Stone’s JFK, The Silence of the Lambs (dubbing the Hannibal Lecter role!), Spielberg’s Saving Private Ryan, episodes one and two of George Lucas’ Star Wars prequel trilogy, turns in Peter Jackson’s The Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers, Wolfgang Petersen’s Troy, plus dozens of other domestic re-dubs for the State Administration for Radio, Film, and Television (SARFT).

Along with his voice work Zhang regularly played supporting roles in locally made film and television projects since the late 1990s. Things really didn’t pick up until 2002 when Zhang made a splash in Feng Xiaogang’s Big Shot’s Funeral. Impressed with his idiosyncratic performance, Feng subsequently cast Zhang in five other films leading to the actor’s big break through as commander Gu Zidi in The Assembly—the lead role for an actor who had never previously headlined a film. For his turn as a beleaguered war veteran trying to gain public recognition for the numerous soldiers that sacrificed themselves under his command in World War II, Zhang garnered scores of best actor awards in addition to increased mainstream exposure (he has since made it onto many “best dressed,” “most beautiful,” and “most handsome man” in China lists.) In The Message he plays Wu Zhiguo (吴志国), a Chinese collaborator who rises quickly through the ranks of Japan’s military counter-intelligence apparatus in China.

 

Film Credits

2009
Bodyguards and Assassins (Shi Yue Wei Cheng)
The Message (Feng Sheng)
Look for a Star (Yau Lung Hei Fung)

2008
The Equation of Love and Death (Li Mi De Caixiang)
2007
Assembly (Ji Jie Hao)
2005
Gimme Kudos (Qiuqiu Ni, Biaoyang Wo); Beauty Remains (Mei Ren Yi Jiu)
2004
A World without Thieves (Tian Xia Wu Zei)
2003
Cell Phone (Shou Ji)
2001
Big Shot's Funeral (Da Wan)

 

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