Chou, Zero (周美玲)

Born in 1969, Zero Chou (aka as Zhou Meiling) is an award-winning Taiwanese director and screenwriter. Chou earned a BA in Philosophy from National Chengchi University, graduating in 1992, and worked as a journalist before becoming a filmmaker. She has won numerous awards for her films exploring the Taiwan LGBT community. Among her features, she is perhaps best known for her three queer films or ‘tongzhi trilogy’: Splendid Float (2004), Spider Lilies (2007), and Drifting Flowers (2008). Splendid Float won several prizes at the 2004 Golden Horse Awards, including Outstanding Taiwanese Film of the Year. Spider Lilies was the winner of the Teddy Award at the 57th Berlin International Film Festival in 2007. One of her latest projects is the romantic comedy Handsome Stewardess, part of Chou’s series “Project Rainbow in Six Asian Cities”, exploring LGBT experiences of coming out, questions of identity, family issues, and marriage in the Chinese-speaking world. The film premiered on the GagaOOLala multi-media streaming platform in October 2019.

Selected Filmography

RoleTitle (English)Title (Chinese)Year
Director5 Lessons in Happiness: Baby Maybe (Short)幸福選擇題五部曲 – 偷一段幸福2020
DirectorThree Makes a Whole握三下,我愛你2019
DirectorChing’s Way Homes阿青,回家了2018
DirectorThe Substitute (Trailer)替身2017
DirectorWe are Gamily (Trailer)偽婚男女2017
DirectorYing Wu Zhe (Documentary)影武者2014
Director, Writer, ProducerRipples of Desire花漾2012
DirectorWave Breaker搏浪2009
DirectorViva Taiwan Moooooovie (Short)麥子不死2008
Director, WriterDrifting Flowers (Trailer)漂浪青春2008
DirectorSpider Lilies (Trailer)刺青2007
Producer, WriterThe Road in the Air單車上路2006
Director, WriterSplendid Float (Trailer)艷光四射歌舞團2004
ProducerFather in the Blacklist (Documentary Short)黑名單爸爸2004
DirectorPoles Extremity (Documentary Short)極端寶島2002
DirectorCorner’s (Documentary)私角落2001
DirectorZou Zu Zhan Ji (Documentary Short)鄒族戰祭2000
Director, WriterHead Hunting Festival (Documentary Short)人頭祭的故事2000
DirectorBefore the Radiation (Documentary Short)輻射將至2000
ProducerFloating Islands (Documentary)流離島影2000
DirectorWanderers’ Bay (Documentary Short)飄泊的港灣:百年基隆港1998
ProducerDemocracy Show (Documentary Short)民主的頭人:政治秀1998
ProducerMother and Son (Documentary Short)媽媽遺失與撿到的孩子1998
DirectorBeing Ceased (Documentary Short)斷曲:走尋布袋戲後場的老樂師1998
DirectorYi Shi Zai Hai Xia Zhong: Wu Qiu (aka Lost in the Strait) (Documentary Short)遺失在海峽中:烏坵1998
DirectorMemories of the Taiwanese Master (Documentary Short)師影1997
DirectorArtist and His Daughter (Documentary Short)藝術家和他的女兒1997
DirectorLooking for the Forgotten Artists (Documentary Short)走找布袋戲的老藝師1997
DirectorA Film About the Body身體影片1996

Articles

Chang, Ivy I-chu. “Mourning Love: Queer Performativity and Transformation in Zero Chou’s Spider Lilies and Splendid Float,” in Taiwan Cinema, Memory, and Modernity. Singapore: Palgrave Macmillan (2019). 125-159. http://www.concentric-literature.url.tw/issues/The%20Couch/10.pdf

Chiu, Kuei-fen, and Yingjin Zhang. New Chinese-Language Documentaries: Ethics, Subject and Place. London: Routledge (2015).

Huang, Yu-Shan, and Chun-Chi Wang. Trans. Robin Visser and Thomas Moran. “Post–Taiwan New Cinema Women Directors and Their Films: Auteurs, Images, Language,” in Chinese Women’s Cinema: Transnational Contexts. Ed. Lingzhen Wang. New York: Columbia University Press (2011). 132–153.

Pecic, Zoran Lee. (2016). “Sinophone Queerness and Female Auteurship in Zero Chou’s Drifting Flowers.” IAFOR Journal of Media, Communication & Film 3.1 (2016): 22-35. https://iafor.org/archives/journals/iafor-journal-of-media-communication-and-film/10.22492.ijmcf.3.1.03.pdf

Wang, Lingzhen. “Chinese Women’s Cinema,” in A Companion to Chinese Cinema. Ed. Yingjin Zhang. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell (2011). 318-345.

White, Patricia. “Zero Chou and the Spaces of Chinese Lesbian Film,” in Women’s Cinema, World Cinema: Projecting Contemporary Feminisms. Durham: Duke University Press (2015).

Interviews

“Interview With Zero Chou.” AfterEllen (May 4, 2008): https://www.afterellen.com/movies/31681-interview-with-zero-chou

Keiser, Yuki. “Zero Chou Interview.” Tokyo Wrestling (July 2008): http://www.tokyowrestling.com/articles_eg/2008/11/zero_chou1.html

Yang, Olivia. “Interview: Director Zero Chou on Making LGBT Films in the Greater China Region.” Cinema Escapist (August 6, 2017): https://www.cinemaescapist.com/2017/08/zero-chou-greater-china-interview/

Reviews

De Rozario, Rosa. “A measure of love: A review of Zero Chou’s Drifting Flowers.” (October 15, 2007): https://www.rderozario.net/publishedwriting/2017/11/9/a-measure-of-love-a-review-of-zero-chous-drifting-flowers

Elley, Derek. “Drifting Flowers.” Variety (February 21, 2008): https://variety.com/2008/film/markets-festivals/drifting-flowers-1200547844/

Elley, Derek. “Review: Ripples of Desire (2012).” Sino-Cinema (April 20, 2018): https://sino-cinema.com/2018/04/20/review-ripples-of-desire-2012/

Ho, Yi. “Movie review: Ripples of Desire.” Taipei Times (December 28, 2012): http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/feat/archives/2012/12/28/2003551163

“Film Review: Spider Lilies (2007, Taiwan).” The Nanchatte Technojunkie (July 15, 2008): https://nanchatte.wordpress.com/2008/07/15/film-review-spider-lilies-2007-ci-qing/

“Film Review of SPIDER LILIES: The Bittersweet Love Story of Two Taiwanese Lesbians.” QWOC Media (June 2012): http://www.qwoc.org/2012/06/film-review-spider-lillies-a-bittersweet-love-story/

Kolesnikov-Jessop, Sonia. “In Taiwan, ‘Spider Lilies’ fuels a small gay renaissance.” The New York Times (June 7, 2007): https://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/06/arts/06iht-fmjessop.1.6024194.html

Marshall, Lee. “Spider Lilies (Ci-Qing).” Screen Daily (February 28, 2007): https://www.screendaily.com/spider-lilies-ci-qing/4031229.article

Palmer, Stephen. “Ripples of Desire.” EasternKicks.com (September 26, 2013): https://www.easternkicks.com/reviews/ripples-of-desire

Scheib, Ronnie. “Splendid Float.” Variety (July 28, 2005): https://variety.com/2005/film/reviews/splendid-float-1200524176/

Young, Deborah. “Ripples of Desire: Hong Kong Review.” The Hollywood Reporter (March 23, 2013): https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/review/ripples-desire-hong-kong-film-430534

Other

“Director Zero Chou’s latest work ‘The Substitute’: I love women, and I’m not ashamed of it!” LalaTai (January 8, 2018): https://lalatai.com/en/tvmovie/news/director-zero-chou%E2%80%99s-latest-work-substitute-i-love-women-and-i%E2%80%99m-not-ashamed-it

Feng Yi-en and Jason Pan. “Film causes stir after box office flop.” Taipei Times (January 8, 2013): http://www.taipeitimes.com/News/taiwan/archives/2013/01/08/2003552048

“Handsome Stewardess premieres in Taipei.” LalaTai (October 15, 2019): https://lalatai.com/en/tvmovie/handsome-stewardess-premieres-taipei

Links

Zero Chou’s IMDb entry: https://www.imdb.com/name/nm1548552/