Hao Wu (director)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Hao Wu filming People's Republic of Desire

Hao Wu (Chinese: 吴皓; pinyin: Wú Hào) is a Chinese-American film director, producer and writer. Wu was also a blogger known as Tian Yi. He is otherwise best known for his feature-length documentary, People's Republic of Desire,[1] winner of the Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 2018 South by Southwest,[2] All in My Family, a Netflix Original Documentary, and 76 Days, about the early days of the COVID-19 outbreak in Wuhan, China. In 2021, Wu won a Peabody Award[3] and a Primetime Emmy Award for Exceptional Merit in Documentary Filmmaking[4] for 76 Days.



Wu worked as a molecular biologist before attending business school. After receiving his MBA degree, he worked in management positions at technology companies including Excite@Home, EarthLink, Alibaba Group and TripAdvisor. In 2011, he left TripAdvisor to become a full-time filmmaker.

In 2005, Wu's film career started with his first film, Beijing or Bust,[5] a documentary about the trials and tribulations of six American born Chinese who chose to return to Beijing and the cultural adaptation they faced. The film was shown in the 6th Annual San Diego Asian Film Festival in 2005.[6] Wu's second film, The Road to Fame, follows students at China's top drama academy, as they prepare to stage a Chinese version of the musical Fame.[7] A co-production with BBC Storyville, VPRO, DR and CNEX, the film premiered at Sheffield Doc/Fest in June 2013. His third film, People's Republic of Desire,[1] about China's live streaming crazed, premiered at the 2018 South by Southwest and won the Grand Jury Award for Best Documentary Feature.[2] Wu then released All in My Family, a Netflix Original Documentary short, in 2019.

In 2020, Wu worked with two collaborators remotely on 76 Days, about the 76 days of lockdown of Wuhan at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The film premiered at Toronto International Film Festival in September 2020.[8] Distributed by MTV Documentary Films and Dogwoof, it was named a Critic’s Pick by The New York Times. In 2021, the film was shortlisted for the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, nominated for the Gotham Awards, and won a Peabody Award[3] and a Primetime Emmy Award for Exceptional Merit in Documentary Filmmaking[4]

From 2014-2016, Wu was a fellow at New America, a D.C.-based think tank.[9]


Wu was detained by the Chinese government on February 22, 2006, when he was making a documentary on "underground" Chinese house churches.[10][11][12] After almost five months, he was released on July 11, 2006.



  1. ^ a b c "People's Republic of Desire". IMDb. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  2. ^ a b "South by Southwest Film Awards". South by Southwest.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ a b "76 Days". The Peabody Awards. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  4. ^ a b "76 Days". Television Academy. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  5. ^ a b Wu, Hao (29 September 2005), Beijing or Bust (Documentary), TripodMedia, retrieved 6 October 2021
  6. ^ "Beijing or Bust". San Diego Asian Film Festival. 2005. Archived from the original on 15 June 2006. Retrieved 2 August 2006.
  7. ^ Wu, Hao (Director). The Road to Fame (Documentary, Music, Musical). Event occurs at 1 h 20 min.
  8. ^ "76 Days". TIFF. Retrieved 6 October 2021. {{cite web}}: Check |url= value (help)
  9. ^ "Hao Wu". New America. Retrieved 6 October 2021.
  10. ^ Fowler, Geoffrey A. (12 July 2006). "Filmmaker Hao Wu Freed From Detention By China Authorities". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
  11. ^ Einhorn, Bruce (27 March 2006). "Detained Chinese blogger Hao Wu". BusinessWeek. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
  12. ^ MacKinnon, Rebecca (20 April 2006). "Shattering the China Dream". The Washington Post. ISSN 0190-8286. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
  13. ^ "The Road to Fame". IMDb. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
  14. ^ Einsiedel, Orlando von; Akkad, Hassan; Corthouts, Lieven (12 October 2021), Convergence: Courage in a Crisis (Documentary), Grain Media, Story Syndicate, retrieved 6 October 2021

External links[edit]