According to Hollywood Reporter, Steven Spielberg had a hand in actor Christian Bale landing the role of John Miller in the Chinese film The Flowers of war, directed by Zhang Yimou. After The Flowers of war premiere in China on Sunday, Yimou told reporters that it was Steven Spielberg who recommended Christian Bale for the starring role. “I asked Steven Spielberg, who is a friend,” said Yimou, “to read the English script and recommend actors.”
Christian Bale was recommended for the previous work Bale did with Spielberg on Empire of the Sun in 1987, which is similarly set during the Japanese occupation of China during WWII.
As reported by THR, Zhang Yimou also dismissed reports that The Flowers of War, the most expensive Chinese film ever made at $100 million, was produced in an attempt to win an Oscar.