张艺谋 (Zhāng Yìmóu) is one of China’s most famous film directors. In the West, he is known for his colorful martial arts movies, “Hero” and “The House of Flying Daggers”.
Many more of his movies have been successful in China, not least “The Flowers of War”, an extremely violent portrayal of the 1937 Nánjīng Massacre. In 2008, Zhāng Yìmóu was the director of the 4-hours-15,000-performers-$100-million Beijing Olympics opening ceremony.
As part of the “fifth generation of directors” he is known to be very socially conscious, and he has a reputation for choosing unknown young actors for his movies, making them famous in the process.
Zhāng Yìmóu is also famous for having at least four children (some say seven!) with a number of different and surprisingly young wives. As a result, he has paid about 7.5 million RMB in reparations for violating the one-child policy.
A brooding social realist - except when he makes monster movies with Matt Damon... Baidu Baike