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Archive for January 16th, 2008

The Golden Rock - January 16th, 2008 Edition

- First, a short report on the Japanese box office numbers:

Looks like Earth’s opening was actually pretty huge. From 275 screens, the nature documentary made 349 million yen, and will definitely have no trouble hitting the 1 billion yen mark. This being a holiday weekend, no film on the top 10 except Tamagotchi took a real huge drop.  The third place opener Giniro no Season probably did not report its numbers, which threw off the top 10 a little bit, and the pseudo-Western drama The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford opens outside the top 10 with 23.7 million yen from 69 screens.

By the way, Tsubaki Sanjuro finally made 1.05 billion yen after 7 weekends. I knew you could do it, Oda-san!

It’s all because of the horses!

- Time for this week’s Oricon charts. On the singles side, the pop group AAA got their first number 1 single, though it only sold 25,000 copies, narrowing beating this year’s Kohaku favorite Sugimoto Masato.  On the album side, even a full week couldn’t lift Ayumi Hamasaki’s latest album back up to the top spot, letting Kobukuro maintain their number 1 for another week.

More from Tokyograph.

- Two pieces of news from Hong Kong newspapers, one with a link, and one without:

The Pang Brothers-directed Storm Riders sequel is now set to shoot next month not only with original stars Ekin Cheng and Aaron Kwok (so THAT’S why the Pangs have been casting them lately!), but also with Twin’s Charlene Choi and Nicholas Tse signed up for supporting roles. The team will go to the Cannes market in May.
(From Oriental Daily)

Screenwriter Ivy Ho is working on her directorial debut, starring Ekin Cheng and Karena Lam.
(From Apple Daily)

- Between making his new vampire flick and his big-budget collaboration with The Host director Bong Joon-Ho, Park Chan-Wook will be producing a screwball comedy named Scarlett Blush.

- Poor Korean anchorwoman Moon Ji-ae has lost her spot as anchor on the news after coming under heavy criticism for cracking up at the end of a newscast. The problem is that it followed an update on the day’s headline, about 40 people being killed in a warehouse fire.

- Lust, Caution has lost its chances at winning a best foreign film Oscar. Then again, it has plenty of company, as heavy favorites such as Diving Bell and the Butterfly, 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days, and Persepolis all did not make the final 9-film short list.  On the other hand, Kazakhstan’s Mongol, starring Japanese actor Tadanobu Asano, did end up on the shortlist.

The Golden Rock - January 15th, 2008 Edition

- The first week of the Winter 2008 season has gone by for Japanese dramas and the ratings are in. The Negotiator leads the way with its premiere episode hitting a 16.7 rating. The only other drama that beat that this past week was the long-running detective drama Aibou. The Misaki Ito-starring drama Edison No Haha premiered with just 11.0% rating; The Kenkuro Kudo-penned drama Mirai Koushi Meguru, starring Kyoko Fukada, started even weaker with just a 9.0 rating. However, an excuse for that is that it played at 11:15 Friday night, a time slot that usually see 12% as successful.

The boxing drama One-Point Gospel, starring one of the Kat-tun boys, premiered with a 13.0 rating; the first drama adaptation of the popular comic Honey and Clover also premiered with a relatively weak 12.9 rating (though it’s trying to attract audiences with the popularity of the comic rather than the cast); and the time limit-based drama Ashita no Kita Yoshio also only scored a 12.7 rating.

As Tokyograph reported, the Monday 9pm Fuji drama Bara No Nai Hanaya did open strong with a 22.4% rating, but that was last night, so we’ll talk about it next week.

All Winter 2008 drama information here.

- According to the Hong Kong Film Blog, a new Donnie Yen film is in the works. The name? Hong Kong Vice. Yen will play a mentor to a female detective. Not sure if this is indeed an approved remake of Miami Vice, or whether they just ripped off the name for someone cheap and quick.

- Variety’s Derek Elley has a fairly positive review for Peter Chan’s The Warlords.

- There’s a rumor out there in the Chinese press about John Woo getting ready to move on to his next project: A historical epic about Mao Tze-Tung’s rise to power and Chiang Kai-Shek’s move to Taiwan. With the sensitive political environment, I doubt China is going to let him pull this off.

- After Stephen Chow boasted about his intentions to make audiences cry when watching his latest film CJ7 because it’s “heartwarming,” now he’s boasting that the special effects by Menford will be up to international standards. In case you don’t know, Menford also did the special effects for The Legend of Zu and A Chinese Tall Story. Adjust your expectations accordingly. Copyright © 2002-2018 Ross Chen