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Getting it out of the way

Lots and lots of news today, because I’m going to be participating in this tomorrow:One Day Blog Silence

- Hong Kong’s BC Magazine - THE magazine for foreigners in Hong Kong - has not only an article of Dancing Lion co-director Marco Mak, but if you scroll down, you’ll also see an interview with Ming Ming director and Hong Kong MTV legend Susie Au.

- Too bad Ming Ming is flopping in Hong Kong. According to those nasty Sunday numbers, Ming Ming only made HK$140,000 on 12 screens for a 4-day total of HK$570,000. At least Ming Ming isn’t doing as bad as Dancing Lion, which only made HK$100,000 on 19 screens on Sunday for a 4-day total of HK$350,000. As expected, Love is Not All Around (Which Lovehkfilm’s Kozo is already calling one of the worst of the year) rules the weekend again with HK$660,000 on 38 screens for a 11-day total of HK9.36 million, which can only suggest that the HK teen audience is only as shallow as Hollywood’s teen audience.

Meanwhile, Spider Lilies, which Kozo also reviewed this week, is beginning to die down a little bit with only HK$80,000 on 9 screens for a 18-day total of HK$3.01 million, which is pretty good for a limited-release Taiwanese film. The Painted Veil actually shows some staying power with HK$100,000 on 5 screens for a 11-day total of HK$910,000. This week’s best limited release goes to opener Paul Verhoeven’s Black Book, which made HK$70,000 on just 2 screens for a 4-day total of HK$180,000.

For reference: US$1=HK$7.8

- In my attempt to do what Hoga News did with its translation of Japanese news site Sanspo, the new adaptation of the classic cartoon Gegege No Kitaro opened on Saturday just in time for Golden Week in Japan. Shochiku, not embarrassed enough from their miscalculation of Tokyo Tower’s box office, saw opening day’s audience number was 150% of the opening day for Takeshi Miike’s The Great Yokai War, which made 2 billion yen. So they decided to declare that Gegege is going to make 3 billion yen. Should I buy into that estimate? I think not…

- In other Japanese box office news, the trend of small animated films making it big continues with the 9-screen opening last weekend of the “Dengeki Bunko Movie Festival.” According to Eiga Consultant, the Tokyo theater it played in found 4155 people over its opening 2 days. That’s 415.5 people per show, which is pretty good, considering the biggest screen on the multiplex holds 426 people. On 9 screens, the film opened with a 15.82 million yen, which seems to be encouraging the distributor to expand it all that much more.

On the other hand, Eiga Consultant also looks at the first wide weekend of Rocky Balboa last weekend. While the film opened to around the same numbers as Sylvester Stallone’s last starring role in Driven in North America, it ended up making more than double Driven’s final gross. On the other hand, Rocky Balboa only opened in Japan at 58% of Driven, which grossed 1.6 billion yen. Can Rocky stay a few more rounds in Japan, or will it always remain the film that “only almost beat Driven?”

- A while ago, I reported Korean star Lee Byung-Hun putting a cameo in Kimura Takuya’s latest film, the film adaptation of the drama Hero. Now, see the man on the set for yourself.

- The 43rd Baeksang Film Awards in Korea happened last week, and if an award can make it to its 43rd installment, it’s gotta be pretty respectable, right? Twitch has the results.

- New news source Filmphilia has details about personal favorite Edmond Pang’s latest film Exodus, which sounds like a dark comedy in the vein of Men Suddenly in Black. But his next film, which he recently got funding for at Filmart, sounds even better.

- Apparently, Quentin Tarantino is going to be bringing more of his “Grindhouse” installment Death Proof to Cannes - 30 minutes more???!!!! As if Tarantino didn’t have enough self-indulgent show-off dialog already, he actually managed to find more to put more into what is essentially a self-masturbatory short film with no plot and a kick-ass car chase. With that said, I still would like to check it out.

- Oh, and there’s a review for the modern Japanese pink film The Glamorous Life of Sachiko Hanai.

Next, best of the week, and look for a revised report of the my SFIFF experience. By the way, because of the feature, there’s no song of the day today.

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