Li Gong was born in Shenyang, on 31st December 1965 in the Liaoning Province of China. She is the daughter of an economics professor and hoped to see herself as a singer in the future. As a child, she wanted to study at the most prestigious University of Music in China but was denied entrance. Subsequently, she joined the Central Academy of Drama in Beijing and graduated from there in 1989.

Her first film as an actress, and Zhang Yimou’s first as a director, she was chosen by the same to act as a lead in the movie ‘Red Sorghum’ (1987), which gained her critical acclaim in the industry. Over the years, she received international acclaim in several others of Zhang Yimou’s films namely – ‘The Story of Qiu Ju’ (1992) and ‘Ju Dou’ (1990). The most acclaimed of her movies was the Oscar-nominated “Raise the Red Lantern”, an adaptation of the novel Wives and Concubines by Su Tong. This film was praised much in the international circuit. Their much collaboration ended after a breakup happened in their personal relationship.

Li received many awards, out of which she received the Best Actress at the 49th Venice International Film Festival for her performance in “The Story of Qiu Ju” (1992). Despite her wide known reach till Hollywood, she avoided acting in English movies due to the lack of confidence in speaking English. Her English speaking debut was the Hatsumomo drama “Memoirs of a Geisha” (2005) for which she received positive reviews. Her other memorable English films to date are the “Chinese Box” (1997), and “Miami Vice” (2006) where she played the famous Montoya’s financial advisor and secret lover, which gained her international commendation and recognition, and “Hannibal Rising” (2007). After a long gap, she reunited with Zhang Yimou for the 2014 film “ Coming Home”. This was her first collaboration with Yimou after 2006 (where their last collaboration “Curse of the Golden Flower” was released). “Coming Home” was scheduled to be screened at the Toronto International Film Festival at 2014.

Li was married to the Tobacco Tycoon Ooi Hoe Seong from 1996 to 2010 before they decided to end their relationship.

Golshifteh Farahani English Actress

Golshifteh Farahani

Golshifteh Farahani, born on 10th July 1983, is an Iranian-French actress, who also sings and is a musician. She is the daughter of Behzad Farahani, who is a theater director and actor, and Fahimeh Rahim Nia. She started her acting career at the age of 6 when she was cast in plays directed by her father. Later, she still kept strong ties with the Theater. Her first role came when she was 14 years old for the film “The Pear Tree” (1998), for which she was critically praised and awarded the Best Actress from the International Section of the Fajr Film Festival. This made her an immediate star of the Iranian Cinemas. She did many Iranian films and some of the well – known acclaimed ones were ‘Zamaneh’ (2001), Jayee Digar (2002), Ashk-e Sharma (2004) for which she won many awards in and outside of Iran. After seeing that her ban couldn’t allow her to attend the premier of her recently released movie ‘Body of Lies’ (2008, starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Russell Crowe), this led to her making her last Iranian Film titled “About Elly” (2009) where her character explores relationships of a middle-class family and, for which yet again she won the Best Director and People’s Choice at Fajr Film Festival by playing a young and shy girl. Farahani became the first Iranian star to act in a major Hollywood Production. She was also supposed to star in the movie ‘Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time’ (2010), but since she was banned from leaving her home country, the role went to the English actress Gemma Arterton. Currently living in Paris, Farahani is a fluent speaker of the English and French Languages apart from Persian and also holds some knowledge in Arabic.

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Greta Scacchi

Ever gorgeous Greta Scacchi is an Italian- Australian actress. She was born as Greta Gracco on 18th February 1960 in Milan, Italy. She was born to an Italian painter and art dealer, Luca Scacchi Gracco and an English dancer, Pamela. Her parents separated when she was four and then Greta with her mother and two elder brothers moved to her native England. After her mother’s remarriage, her family settled in Australia where she attended Hollywood high School and the University of Western Australia. She started off as a theatre artist and made her debut in Edward Bond’s play Early Morning. Her film debut was a German flick, Das Zweite Gesicht. She continued acting in films like Heat and Dust, The Ebony Tower, The Coca-Cola Kid, The White Mischief, Presumed Innocent and The player. She is prevalent for her roles in The White Mischief, Presumed Innocent and The Player. She won many awards for her acting skills, an Emmy Award for her role as Empress Alexandra Fyodorovna of Russia and was nominated for many others. Most recently, she appeared in The Falling and as Mother Mary in A.D. The Bible Continues. She was always in the news for her love for the environment. She keeps supporting environmental campaigns. She as an active supporter of Greenpeace and in 2009 she also posed nude with a codfish to promote a documentary on over-fishing, End of the Line. She was in a relationship with a musician Tim Finn from 1983-89. She has a daughter from the actor Vincent D'Onofrio She got married to Carlo Mantegazza and had a son from him. In spite of being in controversies, she has remained a gorgeous actress knowing many languages and has done many movies in different languages.

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Greta Scacchi English Actress