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November 5, 2009

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Zhang remakes Coens' thriller

ZHANG Yimou says his first movie in three years has shades of comedian Stephen Chow's outlandish humor and marks the first time the "Raise the Red Lantern" director shot in digital format.

In his first interview about his remake of Joel and Ethan Coen's 1984 film "Blood Simple," Zhang told Chinese portal his adaptation is a comedy that morphs into a thriller.

"The audience is watching the movie happily, laughing out loud, then it slowly changes, but the transition has to be funny. That's very hard to do. I think I did a decent job. This is the first time I tried to bridge the two styles," he said.

The interview was posted yesterday on

The remake, due out in China on December 11, is Zhang's first film in three years and his first since designing the opening and closing ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics.

Zhang last shot the imperial court drama "Curse of the Golden Flower," released in 2006.

"Blood Simple" is about a Texas bar owner who hires a private detective to kill his wife and her lover.

Zhang's adaptation, called "San Qiang Pai An Jing Qi" in Chinese, revolves around the owner of a Chinese noodle shop whose plan to kill his cheating wife and her lover spins out of control.

Zhang said that his new film has shades of Chow's signature nonsensical humor, but doesn't go as far as the Hong Kong comedian known for "Shaolin Soccer" and "Kung Fu Hustle."


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