John Woo’s WWII Love Story Starring Zhang Ziyi Will Shoot This May

John Woo

Apparently six years in the making (according to John Woo’s producing partner Terence Chang, anyway), Woo is set to finally get busy directing again, this time an epic love story set during World War II beginning this May. Or at least, that’s the plan. The as-yet untitled film will be the first of a huge slate of movies from China’s Beijing Galloping Horse Film Company, and will feature a $30 million budget.

Song Hye-kyoThe movie is described as a “romantic epic follows six characters and their intertwining love stories set against the backdrop of 1940s Taiwan and Shanghai”, and will feature Zhang Ziyi and Korean actress Song Hye-kyo (right) among the cast. The two ladies, by the by, recently co-starred together in Wong Kar-wai’s martial arts film “The Grandmaster”. (According to, Woo, Ziyi, and Song have the movie “Love and Let Love” on their to-do list, so that sounds like the title of this particular movie — unless they decide to change it later on.)

According to Chang (via ScreenDaily):

It’s the same story we’ve been working on for six years although it keeps getting better and better. It involves recreating battles from World War II and the Chinese Civil War, along with an historical incident from the 1940s when a ship sunk off the coast near Shanghai.

John Woo doing “battles from World War II and the Chinese Civil War” is something I’d love to see. John Woo directing an “epic love story”, on the other hand, not so much. John Woo is not exactly Ang Lee, after all.

Given Chang’s comments and the broad premise of this particular film, it seems to be the same movie Woo talked about almost four years ago, finally come to fruition. When he last talked about the movie, he referred to it as having a Romeo and Juliet element to it.

Woo has been attached to a number of films in Hollywood and abroad over the years, but hasn’t actually directed another movie since 2008/2009’s epic two-parter “Red Cliff”. That’s a lot of talent to just be sitting on the shelf, so let’s hope he finally gets behind the camera again.

Zhang Ziyi in The House of Flying Daggers (2004) Movie Image