Ang Lee quotes

  • We need storytelling. Otherwise life just goes on and on, like the number Pi.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Numbers #Needs #Goes On

  • I think people are universal
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking #People

  • When there is a strong woman character in a story - that always grabs me
    -- Ang Lee

    #Strong Women #Strong #Character

  • There's a level of sophistication of filmmaking that's mind-boggling. Anything you need for your movie, there's an establishment that can make it happen really fast.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Mind #Needs #Levels

  • Sometimes films ignore other points of view because it's simpler to tell the story that way, but the more genuine and sympathetic you are to different points of view and situations, the more real the story is.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Real #Views #Different

  • Sometimes, you have to get angry to get things done.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Done #Sometimes #Angry

  • I think great romance needs great obstacles and textures.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking #Romance #Needs

  • Now I'm kind of established as a director, I much prefer directing to writing.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Writing #Directors #Kind

  • I have two sons in America, and all they care about in Chinese culture is Jackie Chan and Jet Li.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Son #Two #America

  • I think the American West really attracts me because it's romantic. The desert, the empty space, the drama.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Drama #Romantic Love #Thinking

  • For a filmmaker, it's a rare chance to do a personal film on a big canvas.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Chance #Canvas #Film

  • As artists, we like night more than day sometimes.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Artist #Night #Sometimes

  • Sensitivity and money are like parallel lines. They don't meet.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Lines #Sensitivity

  • It's not a pleasure torturing actors, although some of them enjoy it.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Actors #Pleasure #Enjoy

  • I think the book struck me in a few ways that I thought very interesting to pick it as my first martial arts film. It has a very strong female character and it was very abundant in classic Chinese textures.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Art #Strong #Book

  • I think doing period piece is easier, because after a certain distance, everybody is equal, I think. The relative contemporary is harder. I think that's the way it is.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Distance #Thinking #Way

  • Making movies is a way of understanding myself and the world.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Understanding #World #Way

  • I hope people don't compare 2D and 3D because 3D's new, it's unfair to compare to 2D which is really sophisticated, even when we're jaded about it. 3D just began, give it a chance, let the equipment and projection system catch up and be better, let the price go down, let more filmmakers get a hold of it more easily.
    -- Ang Lee

    #People #Giving #Chance

  • When something possesses me, I go ahead and do it.
    -- Ang Lee

  • My mother loves me and everything goes well. I have no conflict with her, so that's not dramatic.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Mother #Conflict #Dramatic

  • San Francisco is one of my favourite cities in the world...I would probably rank it at the top or near the top. It's small but photogenic and has layers...You never have problems finding great angles that people have never done.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Cities #San Francisco #People

  • The L.A. weather is a lot like Taiwan's, where you don't observe four seasons, so the years can pass and you don't feel a thing.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Weather #Years #Taiwan

  • The fear factor actually brings the genuineness.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Genuineness

  • No matter how widely spread out the films are, how different, you still are you.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Different #Matter #Film

  • Every movie I make, that’s my hideout, the place I don’t quite understand but feel most at home.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Home #Feels

  • Even the favorite reviews, the audience response is the movie is too slow, deliberately slow. But for the Chinese audience, the biggest complaint is it happens too quick. I think the historical background that build into our genes is different. American people has never been occupied. The deep sadness and sentimentality, the cultural background that relates to melodrama that we relate to and grow up with, the propaganda, I didn't imagine the difference is so big. It's a very interesting cultural phenomenon.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Growing Up #Sadness #Thinking

  • Making this movie as a period piece about a period that was very recent in people's minds. I was in Taiwan [during the 1970s], so I hope I did all right. Otherwise, it could be the biggest embarrassment of my life. Also, the story is not linear, it's patchy, like a cubist painting, and there is always the possibility it will not hold together, it will fall apart. The tone is part satire, part serious drama, part tragedy, all mixed together, and it has to hit an emotional core. That's also very scary.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Drama #Fall #Emotional

  • If it was a choice between making movies and doing nothing, he'd probably still wish me to make movies, So he made me keep going.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Choices #Wish #Doing Nothing

  • I like to go back to Chinese film-making from time to time. I don't think I can make Chinese films back to back; it's such a big effort. I'd have to take a very long break.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking #Long #Effort

  • American films are less American every day, because you have to please a world audience. There's less authenticity, so it's more accessible.
    -- Ang Lee

    #World #Film #Authenticity

  • My father's family were liquidated during the Cultural Revolution in China because they were landowners. He was the only one to escape. I was born and brought up in Taiwan. But you absorb the trauma. My parents had no sense of security.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Father #Parent #Taiwan

  • If there's something that can be formulated, regulated, give you security, then nobody would lose money. Every movie would be successful. And that's certainly not the case.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Successful #Giving #Would Be

  • My cultural roots are something illusive.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Roots

  • I'm not a romantic. In life I didn't have much experience with romance.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Romance

  • With 3D you're right there immersed in the world.
    -- Ang Lee

    #World

  • I just did a dramatic love story. Whether it's a cultural phenomenon is not for me to say.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Stories #Love Story #Dramatic

  • I see a movie as a way of learning about the world, about myself, and learning about my relationship with people and art.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Art #People #World

  • I don't care about writing really.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Writing #Care

  • I basically made the movie from the crew's suggestions. For one scene, I wanted some kids' toys against the wall in Mikey's room, to give the scene texture, and we tried a field hockey stick. It looked really good to me, until someone had to say that in America, field hockey is more of a girl's game. Gradually I got tuned into the world - that happens on every movie.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Girl #Wall #Kids

  • You can get rich or famous by doing the same thing.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Rich #Fame #Get Rich

  • I like to think I'm un-categorisable,
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking

  • Making a martial arts film in English to me is the same as John Wayne speaking Chinese in a western
    -- Ang Lee

    #Art #Chinese #Film

  • My hometown was one of the major U.S. Air Force bases.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Air #Hometown #Force

  • I grew up pretty much prevented from knowing anything from Communist China except that they were the bad guys that stole our country.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Country #Knowing #Guy

  • I did a women's movie, and I'm not a woman. I did a gay movie, and I'm not gay. I learned as I went along.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Gay

  • There's only one movie in my career I've had regrets with cutting it shorter, and I think some scenes maybe I shouldn't have cut.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Regret #Cutting #Thinking

  • I don't have incredible knowledge about films or of filmmaking history; I'm not that kind of person.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Kind #Film #Incredibles

  • I'm aware of what's missing from my life.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Missing

  • What is really a stretch to me is to make quick decisions.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Decision #Quick Decisions

  • Economically, it's more expensive to make movies. I hope digital movies change that.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Digital

  • Directing, I get all kinds of inspiration. It's working with people. It's a lot more fun.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Fun #Inspiration #People

  • Everyone in the gay community doesn't think alike.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Gay #Thinking #Community

  • I feel that everyone has a Hulk inside, and each of our Hulks is both scary and, potentially, pleasurable. That's the scariest thing about them.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Scary #Feels

  • After making several tragic movies in a row, I was looking to do a comedy, and one without cynicism.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Comedy #Cynicism #Tragic

  • 3D is quite a lot more advanced in animated movies; for live-action movies we're just taking baby steps, we're just in the beginning.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Baby #Steps #Action

  • The thing we call critics are not really reviewers, they are not really critics. They don't have the discipline to write what we would term as critique - it's really just reviewers. They have a common man kind of taste. If you watch them overall, they are not different from the box-office. That's my view.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Writing #Men #Views

  • My first instinct was to cast as close to the short story as possible, but then I realized that I needed actors who could go for it and that they had to function well as a couple in a love story.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Couple #Stories #Actors

  • I find it hard to deliver straightforward things.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Straightforward

  • I'm a drifter and an outsider. There's not one single environment I can totally belong to.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Outsiders #Environment #Drifters

  • I think that at heart I am an old-fashioned Chinese, really I am.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Heart #Thinking #Chinese

  • I don't like to deal with studios.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Deals

  • I don't think the Hulk is a superhero. He's the first Marvel character who is a tragic monster. Really an anti-hero.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Hero #Character #Thinking

  • I like to do drama, something about life that could be disappointing.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Drama #Disappointing

  • Emotions serve characters' purposes. That is their motivation.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Motivation #Character #Purpose

  • In my culture, there's a tradition that when you're in an overwhelming situation and you don't know what to do, you put yourself in a woman's shoes.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Shoes #Culture #Tradition

  • I look at American movies, the big muscles, and try to apply that to Chinese film-making.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Chinese #Trying #Looks

  • I think each movie-making process is a very exhausting and satisfying and fulfilling experience for me.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking #Process #Movie Making

  • I'm a big boy now, and I have to deliver.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Boys #Bigs

  • In Taiwan, I'd be like Michael Jordan walking down the street.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Taiwan #Jordan #Streets

  • In the past I've made movies that were pretty universally liked. You can't really hate them. You can discard them, but you can't really hate them.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Hate #Past #Made

  • I had to find my way of translating the excitement you get when you're reading comic books to the big screen.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Book #Reading #Way

  • Sexuality is a big issue, but there are others - how much you commit to a relationship, to social obligation, to honesty and being honest with yourself.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Honesty #Issues #Being Honest

  • I feel like all of my characters now take this congested situation, they clash, and from there you purge yourself.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Character #Situation #Clash

  • The woman's perspective is like the dark side of the moon: it always exists, but it is never exposed, at least not in my culture.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Dark #Moon #Perspective

  • Fighting for identity is something that is very much in my life.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Fighting #Identity

  • When I see something I like, that's all that counts. What they use, how they get there, I never bother them.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Use #Bother

  • I guess in Hollywood you chart your life by Oscars. You say to each other, 'Remember when that movie won that year? It was 2006. Remember that?'
    -- Ang Lee

    #Years #Hollywood #Oscars

  • When I grew up, in Taiwan, the Korean War was seen as a good war, where America protected Asia. It was sort of an extension of World War II. And it was, of course, the peak of the Cold War. People in Taiwan were generally proAmerican. The Korean War made Japan. And then the Vietnam War made Taiwan. There is some truth to that.
    -- Ang Lee

    #War #Japan #America

  • Kids don't even read comic books anymore. They've got more important things to do - like video games.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Book #Kids #Playing Games

  • Beautifully-acted and precisely observed, ILO ILO is an amazing debut, full of heart and intelligence.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Heart

  • When I started out, nobody gave me scripts, so I had to write.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Writing #Scripts

  • Thinking back to those earlier days, I felt I was weak when I wasn't making movies, and then when I was, I thought I was weak as a family member.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking #Weak #Members

  • On a Chinese film you just give orders, no one questions you. Here, you have to convince people, you have to tell them why you want to do it a certain way, and they argue with you. Democracy.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Order #People #Giving

  • Not taboo - it's just that straight actors still risk their careers commercially and economically. They have to please the crowd - they're movie stars; their image is their industry. It goes beyond acting.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Stars #Careers #Risk

  • So many times you see beautiful lovemaking scenes with a lot of exposure or an awkward lovemaking scene, but I think it's very rare that you see it private.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Beautiful #Thinking #Awkward

  • The most mysterious feminine factor, the existence that we men, we don't know. It's woman. It's feminine. That's what the sword is about. That's the symbolic meaning of the sword.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Men #Mysterious #Feminine

  • When I sent those scripts, that was the lowest point of my life. We'd just had our second son, and when I went to collect them from hospital, I went to the bank to try and get some money to buy some diapers, the screen showed I've got $26 left.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Son #Trying #Diapers

  • I am not particularly religious. But I think we do face the question of where God is, why we are created and where does life go, why we exist. That sort of thing. And it is very hard to talk about it these days, because it cannot be proven. It is hard to discuss it rationally.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Religious #Thinking #Doe

  • I grew up pretty peacefully, in that Eastern way. You easily solve problems, believe in harmony. Reduce conflicts, take orders until one day you give orders.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Believe #Order #Giving

  • I took the name Green Destiny from - well there is such a sword called Green Destiny. It is green because you keep twisting it, it's an ancient skill, you keep twisting it and knocking it and twisting it until it is very elastic and light.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Destiny #Light #Skills

  • I wanted to shoot straight, mainstream, somehow off-beat. Not only realistic West, which is quite unfamiliar to the world's population - even to a lot of Americans.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Population #World #West

  • Summer blockbusters are very expensive to make. They have things that have to be expensive, such as 600 effects shots or CG characters that have to go a certain way, or a film design that is different but expensive.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Summer #Character #Design

  • These days I'm mostly familiar with two parts of L.A.: one is movie culture, and the other is Asian culture. The Westside is work, and the Eastside is Chinese - which means my friends.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Mean #Two #Chinese

  • To me, Ennis stands for the conservative side of America. He's the biggest homophobe in the whole movie - culturally and psychologically - but by the time he admits his feelings, it's too late.
    -- Ang Lee

    #America #Feelings #Too Late

  • Usually with this genre the first thing that happens is a good fight sequence to show that you're in good hands. So we broke that rule. I think a lot of that comes from the western audience.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Fighting #Thinking #Hands

  • When I have a full schedule like that, I don't see myself sitting there for a couple of months, doing the research, going through a painful process, it's just not my thing anymore.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Couple #Sitting #Schedules

  • Over the years Woodstock got glorified and romanticised and became the event that symbolised Utopia. It's the last page of our collective memory of the age of innocence. Then things turned ugly and would never be the same again.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Birthday #Memories #Years

  • Americans are hidden dragons to me.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Dragons

  • Meanwhile, the Ice Storm was still in development, And that was something I really wanted to do, and frankly I don't think I was ready to do a big production like this
    -- Ang Lee

    #Thinking #Ice #Storm

  • The way I go about a lovemaking scene is that we will talk about it during the rehearsing time.
    -- Ang Lee

    #Way #Scene