Ang Lee Wins Best Director Oscar For Life Of Pi, Pulls Out Chinese And Sanskrit In Acceptance Speech

The Taiwanese-born Ang Lee, who previously won Best Director for Brokeback Mountain, has claimed his second Oscar, this time for Life of Pi. He beat out the favored Steven Spielberg, who directed Lincoln, and Michael Haneke (Armour), David O. Russell (Silver Linings Playbook), and Benh Zeitlin (Beasts of the Southern Wild).

In one of the more notable acceptance speech moments this year, Lee thanked the 3,000 people who worked on the film with him, plus Taiwan. He ended with a “thank you” in Chinese and the Indian valediction “namaste.”

One reaction from Taiwan, via WSJ:

In reaction to Ang Lee’s best-director win, Chu Wen-ching, head of the Bureau Audiovisual and Music Industry Development of the Ministry of Culture, said: “We are very pleased and feel honored to know that Lee Ang has won the award as Best Director. He has brought honor and glory to Taiwan.”

By the way, a reminder that last time Lee won an Oscar, in 2006, Chinese censors scrubbed out references to Taiwan and homosexuality in the CCTV broadcast. Some netizens certainly remember:

CCTV, however, seems to have relaxed its censorship this time, or at least just doesn’t care as much:

That’s Richard Gere, famous Buddhist, China hater.

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