The Rome Film Festival will fete prolific Hong Kong director, producer, and screenwriter Tsui Hark, with its Maverick Director Award dedicated to auteurs who have contributed to the invention of a new, non-conformist cinema.

Hark, who pioneered the Hong Kong New Wave in the ’80’s, is among Asia’s most exciting and versatile commercial helmers. Among the works he is best know for are “A Chinese Ghost Story,” “The Swordsman,” and “Seven Swords.”

Hark will receive the award from Gallic helmer Olivier Assayas, a former Hong-Kong-based Cahiers du Cinema critic, with whom Hark will hold an onstage master class.

In a statement Mueller praised Hark, saying he “has reinterpreted the Chinese filmmaking tradition, turning the codes and conventions of Western cinema upside down.”

Hark’s new film, the 3D blockbuster “Young Detective Dee: Rise of the Sea Dragon,” will screen at the fest.

Rome’s 8th edition will run November 8-17.