Zhang Ziyi: ‘I don’t just want to kick ass’

As English tutors go, Eminm is not the obvious choice. But that's how the Chinese actress Zhang Ziyi, star of Hero and House of Flying Daggers, learnt the language. Of course, she picked up more than her fair share of profanities listening to the Detroit rapper's CDs. "It's normal," she giggles. "The first thing you want to learn is bad words!"

If you've ever seen the 29-year-old on screen, it might be hard to imagine this fragile, demure and childlike creature saying boo to the proverbial goose, let alone singing along to Slim Shady.

Then again, if you're going to conquer Hollywood, you need to learn the ropes any way you can. Zhang was just 21 when she made her first American film, in 2001's Rush Hour 2. She spoke so little English that her co-star Jackie Chan had to translate for her, and when she did learn to read it, she was less than impressed with the scripts that Hollywood sent her.

(The Independent)

Actors, International Cinema

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