Chinese movie director and sometime actor, considered part of the "Fifth Generation Filmmakers" group. He was born 14 November 1951 in Xi'an, Shaanxi province, China. His first film was 1987's Red Sorghum, with actress Li Gong (Gong Li in some English-language credits), who met in Beijing's drama school and who has appeared in several of his films. His work has been controversial and some films have had problems being shown in China because they contain sexual material or portraying parts of China's history in a bleak light.

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