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The Golden Rock - September 3rd, 2007 Edition

- We have a tradition of starting each post with number crunching. But now that the box office reports have moved on to their own posts, we’ll start with Japanese drama ratings instead. In a rebound from disappointing weeks, the idol drama Hana Zakari no Kimi Tachi He have gone up to its season-high 18.2 rating in its 9th week. The Monday 9 pm Fuji drama First Kiss is not quite back up to its premiere rating, but still seeing a small rebound, going up to a 14.6 from last week’s 12.8 rating. The other idol drama, Yamada Taro Monogatari, also sees an increase from last week’s 13.6 to this week’s 14.6 for its 8th episode.

In outside-primetime category, the Saturday 11 pm Fuji high school bully drama Life also saw a season-high of 14.2 for its 9th week, and the Friday 11 pm TV Asahi drama Sushi Ouji (which you may remember also has a film version on the way) is climbing back up with an 8.1 rating, close to its season-high.

In “someone asked me to follow it” category, Yama Onna Kabe Onna (how many episodes can they go with a drama about breasts?) is just there, with this week’s ratings following the current season average of 12.2.

All drama information and description can be seen at Tokyograph.

I was going to try something new with Hong Kong ratings for biggest broadcaster TVB, but that would just seem lazy (without the ATV rating, that is). So consider it forgotten.

- As mentioned yesterday, the Japanese drama adaptation Hero is expected to be the big thing this year, surpassing Dororo as the highest-grossing Japanese film of the year and also surpassing Fuji’s own Monkey Magic (also a drama adaptation) to be the widest release for a Japanese film (or only widest live-action? Anyone?). Knowing that everyone in Asia has probably already bought bootlegs or downloaded the drama, Hero will also get a fairly wide Asia release in October, including the widest release for a Japanese film in South Korea.

- This news is kind of a spoiler on its own, but the Hong Kong-based distributor for Jet Li’s latest Hollywood flick War (or known as Rouge Assassin in Hong Kong) says he intends to submit the film to Chinese censors, and he expects them to let it in with a few cuts too. Yeah, good luck there.

- Speaking of those damn Chinese censors, blacklisted Chinese filmmaker Jiang Wen is back with The Sun Also Rises. Not only does Variety Asia have a general feature about the film, it also has a whole article about it not having anything to do with Hemingway.

- The Seiun Awards for Japanese science fiction writers was announced. The most curious winners were “Japan Sinks, Part 2″ (How much more of Japan was left to sink at the end of that movie?) and the media award going to Toki wo Kakeru Shojo - better known as The Girl Who Leapt Through Time.

- Honestly, I’m not surprised: Ang Lee says that filming the explicit sex scenes in his latest Lust, Caution left him nearly close to nervous breakdown. Reportedly, these scenes were filmed over an 11-day period in a close set with only a few crew members.

- Despite the recent global credit problems, experts believe that media financing will not be badly affected. Sorry, I posted this to assure myself that I will have a future in the business.

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