Warriors of Heaven and Earth

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Warriors of Heaven and Earth
Warriors of heaven and earth.jpg
U.S. theatrical poster
Traditional 天地英雄
Simplified 天地英雄
Mandarin Tiāndì Yīngxíong
Directed by He Ping
Produced by Song Dai
Wang Zhonglei
Chen Kuo-fu
Rita Fung
Hou Shengjun
Zhou Fengying
Yang Ge
Written by He Ping
Zhang Rui
Starring Jiang Wen
Kiichi Nakai
Wang Xueqi
Zhao Wei
Hasi Bagen
Music by A. R. Rahman
Cinematography Zhao Fei
Zheng Hua
Wang Min
Edited by Kong Jinlei
Columbia Pictures Film Production Asia Limited
Distributed by Sony Pictures Classics (U.S.)
Release date
  • October 16, 2003 (2003-10-16)
Running time
114 minutes
Country China
Language Mandarin

Warriors of Heaven and Earth (Chinese: 天地英雄) is a 2003 Chinese action adventure film directed by He Ping. The film's notable cinematography captures a wide range of landscapes across China's Xinjiang province. It was China's official entry for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, though it did not get nominated.


The film is set in western China in 700AD during the Tang Dynasty, and revolves around two protagonists, the first of whom is Lieutenant Li of the Chinese army. Li's refusal to kill Göktürk women and child prisoners is classed as a mutiny, leading him to be expelled from the army and to become a fugitive, traveling through the Gobi Desert. Years later, he is saved by the survivors of a caravan which carries a powerful, mystical relic accompanied by a Buddhist monk. Li protects the caravan from Göktürks as well as the overlord of the region, Master An, who is hired by the Göktürk Khan to seize the relic.

The second protagonist, a Japanese emissary, Lai Xi, is ordered by the emperor of China to kill the fugitive, Li. In a twist of fate, Lai Xi discovers that the caravan is on a mission and helps Li to defend it, to ensure that it arrives at the capital safely. They promise to fight each other only after their duty is done, although that battle never comes to pass.


  • Jiang Wen as Lieutenant Li
  • Kiichi Nakai as Emissary Lai Xi
  • Wang Xueqi as Master An
  • Zhao Wei as Wen Zhu
  • Hasi Bagen as Cao Jian, One Eye Eagle
  • He Tao as Ma Gun
  • Lau Lei-nin as Wu Lao Er
  • Wang Deshun as Old Diehard
  • Li Haibin as Zao Zimo
  • Yeerjiang Mahepushen as Master An's servant
  • Hou Fugao as guard
  • Zhou Yun as Monk Jue Hui
  • Lee Wai as Di Hu / Salamander
  • Do Yuk-ming as rider
  • Wang Handong as rider
  • Yang Haiquan as Baldy
  • Tuerxunjiang Zunong as innkeeper
  • Wong Hiu as emperor
  • Sang Baozhong as General Wen
  • Gao Qiang
  • Sun Yingjie
  • Liu Mingzhe
  • Liu Qingwei
  • Hao Youyue
  • Guo Zhengjian
  • Chen Xiongwei
  • Qi Kejian
  • Chan Laap-san
  • Xie Ze
  • Feiluola
  • Sailike
  • Azili
  • Hanati
  • Zumureti
  • Ayiguli
  • Gulizha
  • Maierhaba
  • Mikereyi
  • Qing Gele
  • Kunakebayi
  • Julaiti
  • Li Guohai
  • Gao Quanjun
  • Sang Zongzhong

Awards and nominations[edit]

11th Beijing Student Film Festival

  • Won: Best Visual Effect
  • Won: Favorite Actress (Zhao Wei)
  • Won: Favorite Actor (Jiang Wen)

27th Hundred Flowers Awards

24th Golden Rooster Awards


Warriors of Heaven and Earth: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
Soundtrack album by A. R. Rahman
Released October 3, 2003 (China)
May 4, 2004 (India)
Recorded Panchathan Record Inn
Sahara Sound Ltd.
Rudolfinumand Sono Studios
Genre World Music
Length 36:32
Label Sony Classical
Producer A.R. Rahman
A. R. Rahman chronology
Warriors of Heaven and Earth
Enakku 20 Unakku 18
(2003)Enakku 20 Unakku 182003

The original score was composed by Indian composer A. R. Rahman. Warriors of Heaven and Earth: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack was released on CD featuring 14 tracks, which include excerpts from the score and 1 theme song, "Warriors in Peace", sung by Taiwanese singer Jolin Tsai.[1] Following the film's release, the score and soundtrack were released in one album separately, under the title Between Heaven and Earth. The album also include the theme song, "Warriors in Peace", in two languages, which are the Hindi version by Sadhana Sargam and English version by Sunitha Sarathy.[2]

Rahman signed the project after the head of Sony Classical Music suggested he do project for them in the Western Classical mode.[3] While signing the project, Rahman was working with violinist Joshua Bell on compositions based on poems by the Persian poet Rumi. This project was later cancelled.[3][4] Originally the music was supposed to be recorded in Beijing. But because of SARS, Rahman moved to Prague to record the score.[3]

Rahman has mixed Chinese, Turkish and Indian sounds as the film is about the Silk Route.[3] He says that he wanted to give the Chinese something they had not heard before, while retaining that international flavour.[3] The score is completely acoustic with symphonic pieces and relatively little electronic sounds have been used.[3] Performers of the score include The Czech Film Orchestra and Chinese soloists in Hong Kong. Other instruments, including the erhu, flute, duduk, dizi, taiko drums are featured.[3][4]

Track listing
Song Duration Artist
"The Golden Era" 3:56 Instrumental
"Warriors in Peace (Chinese Version)" 4:31 Jolin Tsai
"Lord An’s Empire" 3:31 Instrumental
"Water" 3:52 Instrumental
"Horses" 2:27 Instrumental
"Mountains" 1:49 Instrumental
"Dacoit Duel" 3:26 Instrumental
"Lai Chi" 1:31 Instrumental
"Buddha's Remains" 2:40 Instrumental
"Blue Light" 2:23 Instrumental
"The Monk and The Miracle" 4:05 Instrumental
"Desert Storm" 5:19 Instrumental
"Escape" 2:33 Instrumental
"Warriors of Heaven and Earth (Instrumental)" 4:27 Instrumental

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Warrios Of Heaven And Earth CD Format, retrieved 2017-04-06 
  2. ^ Between Heaven and Earth, Sony Classical, 2004-05-04, retrieved 2017-04-06 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g Savita Gautham. "Chinese rhapsody". The Hindu. Retrieved 2003-10-23. 
  4. ^ a b Rangan, Baradwaj; Suhasini, Lalitha (14 June 2008). "A R Rahman – The Rolling Stone Interview". Rolling Stone. Retrieved 16 November 2008. 

External links[edit]