Film director Zhang Yimou said yesterday he was very confident of a successful opening ceremony for the Beijing Olympics in August.
"The mass rehearsals for the opening ceremony of the Beijing Olympic Games, with more than 10,000 people involved, are going well," Zhang said before attending the First Session of the 11th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference (CPPCC), which started yesterday in the capital.
Zhang has been tasked with designing the opening and closing ceremonies for the Games.
He said he felt "regret" over Hollywood director Steven Spielberg's recent withdrawal from the Olympics as its artistic advisor.
But Spielberg's decision will not have any influence on the ceremonies, Zhang said.
The American movie director was appointed artistic advisor by the Beijing Organizing Committee for the 2008 Olympics in April 2006, and became involved with the opening and closing ceremonies of the event, together with Zhang and Ric Rirch, the Australian director behind ceremonies at the Sydney Games in 2000.
Spielberg quit last month, citing concerns over the humanitarian crisis in Darfur, which he linked to the Chinese government.
Zhang Yimou's Profile
Film director Zhang Yimou, who is also director of the opening and closing ceremonies for the Beijing Olympic Games, is a member of the First Session of the 11th National Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference.
On November 14, 1950, Zhang Yimou was born in Shaanxi province of China. His childhood was a difficult one. After the Cultural Revolution, he became a photographer, buying his first camera in 1974. Many of his photos were published in local periodicals, including the Shaanxi Daily.
In 1979, he entered the Beijing Central Film Academy after a long struggle to be admitted. He studied at the school until 1982, focusing on cinematography. In 1982, he graduated as a member of China's Fifth Generation of filmmakers.
After graduation, Zhang was assigned to the Guangxi Film Studio in Southern China where he worked as a cameraman and a cinematographer. While there, he made contact with fellow fifth generation filmmakers Chen Kaige and Zhang Junzhao who later became his collaborators and supporters.
Red Sorghum (红高粱 1987)
Codename Cougar (代号美洲豹 1989)
Ju Dou (菊豆 1991)
Raise the Red Lantern (大红灯笼高高挂 1992)
The Story of Qiu Ju (秋菊打官司 1992)
To Live (活着 1994)
Shanghai Triad (摇啊摇，摇到外婆桥 1995)
Lumière and Company (1995) - segment of a short film anthology
Keep Cool (有话好好说 1997)
Not One Less (一个都不能少 1999)
The Road Home (我的父亲母亲 1999)
Happy Times (幸福时光 2000)
Hero (英雄 2002)
House of Flying Daggers (十面埋伏 2004)
Riding Alone for Thousands of Miles (千里走单骑 2005)
Curse of the Golden Flower (满城尽带黄金甲 2006)
One and Eight (一个和八个 1982)
Yellow Earth (黄土地 1984)
Old Well (老井 1986)
The Big Parade (大阅兵 1986)