Yeh Jufeng has been called the most important producer of post-Taiwan New Wave Cinema. For the last two decades, she has collaborated with some of Taiwan's most important directors and produced hits both in Taiwan and abroad. These include "The Great Buddha +," "Murmur of Youth," "The Legend of Eileen Chang," "GF*BF," and "Red Cliff." Her status and importance were recognised in 2013, when she received the Golden Horse Award for Outstanding Filmmaker of the Year.
Yeh's career began in 1993. Since then, she has made about 30 films, and her career has taken her to many different places, both literally and figuratively. She has not restricted herself to working in film, having produced television dramas as well. Moreover, she has worked in several foreign countries, which makes her one of the most experienced producers in Taiwan when it comes to working overseas. Yeh has also produced works in a variety of genres and forms, from short films to documentaries to feature films, in her strive to help new directors establish themselves.
In 2004, Yeh helped auteur Tsai Ming-Liang make "The Wayward Cloud." Tsai had already won the Golden Lion Award at the Venice Film Festival, but was still a down-to-earth person. Yeh enjoyed Tsai's company because, like her, he saw film as his life. The two became close while they worked on the film together. However, she had trouble making a budget from Tsai's minimalistic script despite her deep admiration for his artistry and originality, in which she describes his films as being like a series of paintings linked together.
One of Yeh's biggest projects was "Red Cliff," directed by Hollywood legend John Woo. The film, which is based on an important battle in the Three Kingdoms period of Chinese history, attracted investment from all over East Asia. The role came about almost by chance, as Yeh had worked on a previous project, "Blood Brothers," with the director and producer.
This experience was rather a shock to Yeh, who was used to the more modest scale of the Taiwanese film industry, where NT$75 million is considered a large budget. "Red Cliff" had a budget of over NT$2 billion (US$70 million). However, she described it as a great experience that she was unlikely to have otherwise, involving, as it did, building ships and forts.
Learning from the challenges and surprises she faced on producing "Red Cliff," Yeh became an expert in budget control and project development for international co-productions. In 2004, she started her own production company, named Ocean Deep Films, while heading the production department at Mandarin Vision, a Taiwan film production firm. In the future, Yeh hopes to continue this line of work and create high-quality films of all types.