Maggie Cheung, Who Hasn’t Made A Movie In 16 Years, Said She No Longer Deserves To Be Called An Actress
It’s been 16 years since Hongkong screen goddess Maggie Cheung last took on a major film role, but it looks like those hoping for a comeback could be left waiting even longer… if not forever.
Recently, an old interview of hers resurfaced on the internet, in which Maggie admitted that she “no longer deserves to be called an actress”. Not exactly something we expected to hear from someone with numerous acting accolades and achievements under her belt, including being the first Chinese performer to win Best Actress at both the Berlin International Film Festival and Cannes Film Festival.
The report’s title translates to A Dialogue with Maggie Cheung, Asia’s Greatest Movie Star and the interview was conducted four years ago. In it, Maggie was asked how she responds to questions about her occupation — does she say “I am an actress” or “I used to be an actress”?
Her response was: “I used to be an actress. After being away from film sets for 12 years, I no longer deserve to be called an actress!”
Not that she minds saying that, though. The 56-year-old went on to reveal that she enjoys her current life very much, and that if no one reminded her, she would “easily forget” that she was once an actress. Guess that means she doesn’t watch her own movies every once in a while to reminisce? Or that her many trophies are hidden away in some storage closet?
Since her departure from the silver screen, Maggie has moved on to other ventures, such as devoting more time and effort into her production company, learning how to edit films, attending the occasional fashion event, and, of course, chasing her dream of becoming a singer.
Her musical ambitions infamously got off to a rocky start, with her maiden gig at Shanghai’s Strawberry Music Festival in 2014 getting branded a “car crash” by the media. Her singing voice was also likened to “a duck quacking from hell” (ouch), but she eventually managed to pick herself up after a year of hiding in shame.
Sadly, an acting comeback does not appear to be in the pipeline as Maggie said that there are many reasons she stopped making films. After being crowned Best Actress at the 2004 Cannes Film Festival for her role in Clean, she “felt like something was about to come to an end” (uh, like an ‘Oscar curse’ or something?).
“And since I’ve decided to leave, I might as well try to go even further after experiencing success,” hence her willingness to risk it all to explore unknown areas. Her only roles since then were a small cameo in 2010 rom-com Hot Summer Days and in several art installation videos.
That said, she clarified that that doesn’t mean she wants to say goodbye to acting permanently. There just haven’t been any new and interesting filmmakers who have managed to catch her eye, nor have there been any movies she felt like she could connect with.
Then again, this interview was done in 2016. Perhaps she has changed her mind since then? One can certainly hope.