DAYYAN ENG, who is known as Wu Shixian to audiences in China, is an American writer-director and producer with a distinguished international background. He studied film in the US and transferred to the prestigious Beijing Film Academy where he finished his undergraduate studies in directing. Starting his career directing TV commercials for the Asian and global market, Eng first won recognition at Venice, Sundance and Cannes film festivals for his short film Bus 44, and for his debut feature film, the hit Chinese romantic-comedy Waiting Alone. He was the first American to direct a Chinese feature film. In late 2005, Eng became the first foreign member of the China Director’s Guild and made history as the first foreign director to have a film nominated for “Best Picture” at the Chinese academy awards. He is presently one of the hottest young feature directors in China, and is regarded as “one of the top directors’ to watch in China” according to Variety. Eng’s most recent film is the quirky dramedy Inseparable, which he wrote, produced and directed. The film premiered at the 2011 Pusan Int’l Film Festival and stars Daniel Wu and Oscar-winner Kevin Spacey -- who became the first Hollywood actor to star in a fully Chinese-financed film. Inseparable, which co-stars Gong Beibi, Yan Ni, and Peter Stormare, was named as one of The Wall Street Journal’s Top 10 Most Notable Asian Films of the Year. Inseparable was awarded “Best US-China Co-Production Film” at the 9th Chinese American Film Festival. Eng divides his time between Beijing and Los Angeles, and is repped by UTA and DMG's Chris Fenton in the US.
In 2007, Eng was invited to direct the first-ever opening short for the Chinese academy awards. He cast some of Asia’s biggest stars, Ziyi Zhang, Liu Ye and Ge You, to spoof the action-movie genre in a humorous send-up on national TV in China.
In 2005, Eng completed the Chinese independent feature film Waiting Alone which he wrote and directed, featuring an ensemble cast of young Chinese stars including Xia Yu, Li Bingbing, Gong Beibi, and featuring cameos from some of Asia’s biggest names, including Chow Yun-Fat. It premiered to critical raves and was an audience favorite at the 17th Tokyo International Film Festival. The film has been called one of 2005’s “best films” by over 50 Chinese media outlets and Variety. Waiting Alone became a favorite in China among young people following its release, and went on to receive 3 nominations, including Best Picture, at the Chinese academy awards (Golden Rooster Awards); as well as winning the “Best First Feature” and “Best Actor” awards at the popular Beijing Film Festival. Waiting Alone became a best-selling DVD in China and its national network TV premiere debuted at #1. The film continues to add a following to its already large youth fan-base. Waiting Alone was picked up for international distribution by Arclight Films in Cannes 2006.
In 2001, Eng wrote and directed Bus 44. The film premiered and won awards at the 2001 Venice Film Festival and 2002 Sundance Film Festival, and was invited to the 2002 Cannes Film Festival “Director’s Fortnight,” becoming the first Chinese short film to be invited to each of these festivals. The film was covered extensively in the Chinese media at the time and was critically acclaimed in China, the US, and in Europe, gaining TV and theatrical distribution in territories worldwide.