You are now leaving to visit an external site.

This site may be governed by it's own
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy

A Film By Zhang Yimou



Lu Yanshi (Chen Daoming) and Feng Wanyu (Gong Li) are a devoted couple forced to separate when Lu is arrested and sent to a labor camp as a political prisoner, just as his wife is injured in an accident. Released during the last days of the Cultural Revolution, he finally returns home only to find that his beloved wife has amnesia and remembers little of her past. Unable to recognize Lu, she patiently waits for her husband's return.

A stranger alone in the heart of his broken family, Lu Yanshi determines to resurrect their past together and reawaken his wife's memory.

Director's Note

Based on Yan Geling's novel The Criminal Lu Yanshi, COMING HOME is a love story about joy and sadness, as well as separation and reunion. We used the end of the original story – with Lu Yanshi returning home – as the starting point of the script. Everyone knows that Chen Daoming and Gong Li are the finest actors working in China, and they were my first and only choices for their respective roles. I've learned a lot from working with them. They offered a lot of constructive opinions about even the smallest details in the story. That's why their contribution to the film extends far beyond the portrayal of the characters.

Having a so-called "rising star" in the daughter's role was not a must as her character serves a very important function in the story. When I first met Huiwen, I noticed her bright shining eyes, which resembled the aura of young Red Guards. It was what I needed. For the second part of the film, I needed to change the way her eyes look. They should look as if they are in a trance, always hesitant. Huiwen had the ability to do that.

This type of film is very difficult to make. It needs to be made in a state of serenity. If I thought about benefits and profits even a little, then I would lose my way. That's why, for me, this film represents a return to an earlier state of mind and an older approach to creativity. The most important thing for me is whether the audience will keep this film in their hearts and whether they will truly remember the emotions behind COMING HOME.

– Zhang Yimou


Gong Li

Gong Li

One of China's most celebrated actresses, Gong Li has been called the muse of Fifth Generation filmmakers. In 1987, she collaborated with director Zhang Yimou for the first time in RED SORGHUM (1987) and found success instantly. Her performances in award-winning films made her one of the top Chinese actresses in the world; she was the first Chinese star to grace the cover of Time Magazine. With RED SORGHUM, THE STORY OF QUI JU (1992) and FAREWELL MY CONCUBINE (1993), Gong Li remains the only Chinese actress to star in films that have won the top prize at all three of Europe's most prestigious film festivals – Berlin, Venice, and Cannes. She has also found success in Hollywood films such as MEMOIRS OF A GEISHA (2005), MIAMI VICE (2006) and HANNIBAL RISING (2007), served as a jury member at all three festivals and is currently a goodwill ambassador for UNESCO.

"My role was incredible yet difficult to handle. I feel as if I have accomplished an impossible mission and brought an entirely new 'Gong Li' to the audience. Working again with director Zhang, I found his films are growing more profound, and more of a challenge. This role was definitely more challenging than the one in CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER seven years ago. But I enjoy challenges. Without them, I would not feel such a great passion for acting."

– Gong Li

Chen Daoming

Chen Daoming

Chen Daoming started his acting career in television with a breakthrough role in 1985 as China's last emperor Puyi in drama THE LAST DYNASTY and has gone on to become one of the most acclaimed and respected actors in China. In 1990, the Chinese Film Performing Arts Society and the Feitian Awards recognized him for his role in the television series FORTRESS BESIEGED. He also won the Best Actor award at the Golden Rooster Awards for the 1999 film MY 1919, as well as a Best Actor nomination at the China Golden Eagle Television Awards for the television series KANGXI DYNASTY. For international audience, Chen is best known for his roles in Zhang Yimou's HERO (2002(, Andrew Lau/Alan Mak's INFERNAL AFFAIRS III (2003), Feng Xiaogang's AFTERSHOCK (2009) and BACK TO 1942 (2012).

"COMING HOME's greatest achievement is that it doesn't linger on the sorrows of history. Instead, it brings the audience something beyond affection: family reunion and hope."

– Chen Daoming

Zhang Huiwen

Zhang Huiwen

A graduate of the Beijing Dance Academy, Zhang Huiwen is making her film debut in Zhang Yimou's COMING HOME. As the master filmmaker's latest discovery, Zhang is currently under the spotlight in the Chinese media as a potential star actress.


Zhang Yimou

Zhang Yimou


One of the most important and influential filmmakers in China, and a core member of China's "Fifth Generation" directors, Zhang Yimou started his career as a cinematographer and became a director in 1987. Over the years, Zhang has directed films which received accolades from around the world: RED SORGHUM (1987, Golden Bear winner at the Berlin International Film Festival), JU DOU (1990, In Competition at the Cannes Film Festival and nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards®), RAISE THE RED LANTERN (1991, Silver Lion winner at the Venice International Film Festival and nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at the Academy Awards®), TO LIVE (1994, Grand Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival), to name a few.

In 2002, his martial arts epic HERO ushered in a new era of blockbusters for Chinese cinema, and was followed by the equally successful HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS (2004), and CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER (2006).

In 2012, Zhang received the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Mumbai International Film Festival, a special award of merit at South Korea's Daejong Awards, an award for Outstanding Achievement at the Marrakech International Film Festival and the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Cairo International Film Festival. He also holds an honorary doctorate from Boston University.

Yan Geling


Yan Geling is a leader novelist and scriptwriter. She has published over twenty books and written numerous screenplays, and many of her works have been adapted for television and film, including Joan Chen's XIU XIU: THE SENT-DOWN GIRL (1998), Chen Kaige's FOREVER ENTRHALLED (2008) and Zhang Yimou's THE FLOWERS OF WAR (2011). She has won more than thirty literary and film awards, and her novels and short stories have been translated into more than twenty languages.

Zou Jingzhi


Zou Jingzhi began his career as a successful poet in the 1980s. Over the years, he has published poetry collections, anthologies and novels.

As a screenwriter, Zou has also earned praise for his work with directors including Zhang Yimou in RIDING ALONE FOR THOUSANDS OF MILES (2005), and Wong Kar-wai n THE GRANDMASTER (2013). Zou began writing as a playwright in the late 1990s, with highly acclaimed works like BANQUET (performed in France, the United Kingdom, and the United States) and I LOVE PEACH BLOSSOM (over 600 shows performed by various troupes). Many of his plays have gone to tour across China, making Zou one of the most prolific playwrights in the country.

Zhao Xiaoding


One of China's most renowned cinematographers, Zhao Xiadong graduated from the Beijing Film Academy in 1989. His work on HERO (2002), HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS (2004), RIDING ALONE FOR THOUSANDS OF MILES (2005), CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER (2006) and THE FLOWERS OF WAR (2011) has earned him much deserved attention at home and abroad. He became one of the few Chinese cinematographers to be nominated for the Academy Award® thanks to his work on HOUSE OF FLYING DAGGERS. In 2007, he was nominated at the Hong Kong Film Awards for CURSE OF THE GOLDEN FLOWER.

Qigang Chen


One of the most famous Chinese composers in the world, Qigang Chen has the ability to depict the inner lives of women with his music, as evidenced in UNDER THE HAWTHORN TREE (2010) and THE FLOWERS OF WAR (2011, nominated for Best Composer at the Asian Film Awards). His ability to blend traditional Chinese elements into western style music has earned him much acclaim from all over the world. In addition to composing award-winning scores, he also served as the Musical Director of the opening ceremony of the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. In 2013, he was decorated as a Chavalier de l'Ordre des arts et des lettres by the French government.


  • Didi Kristen Tatlow THE NEW YORK TIMES

    "Emotionally Powerful. Richly Nuanced."

  • Maggie Lee VARIETY

    "Filmmaking Doesn't Get More Timeless — It Recalls Another Great Historical Romance, 'Doctor Zhivago'"