'…in some films, to show that the hero has been waiting for quite a time you'll be shown five cigarette stubs in the ashtray. Normally, for a scene like that I will film the character for as long as it takes him to smoke five cigarettes. That's real time, but it's very difficult to handle because the audience will get bored. But I think I do this deliberately because I want them to feel that the hero is in a state of anxiety, waiting for something that may not happen, etc. I don't just want them to know logically that the hero has been waiting for a long time; no, I also want them to feel this real waiting time.'
- Tsai Ming-liang, in Daniele Riviere and Tsai Ming-liang, ‘Scouting’, in Jean-Pierre Rehm, Olivier Joyard, and Daniele Riviere, eds., Tsai Ming-liang, Paris: Dis Voir, 1999, p.107.
"I always thought one minute flies by. But sometimes it really lingers on. Once, a person pointed at his watch and said to me, that because of that minute, he’d always remember me. It was so charming listening to that. But now I look at my watch and tell myself that I have to forget this man starting this very minute." — Days of Being Wild (1990)