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Archive for March 2nd, 2008

The Golden Rock - March 2nd, 2008 Edition

- It’s Taiwan music charts time! This week on the G-Music charts, Aska Yang got its first place back after Gary Cao regained his top spot last week. Cao dropped down to 3rd place, which is still damn good after 9 weeks on the chart. Another strong performer to Joanna Wang, whose debut album is still at 2nd place after spending 7 weeks on the chart. The best-performing newcomer is the Grammy compilation album all the way down at 15th place. Other than that, sales are kind of depressing right now.

- It’s reviews time! This week from Japan Times’ Mark Schilling is Doko Ni Iku No, the first film in 22 years from cult director Yoshihiko Matsui. Also included is an interview with the director himself. Also, there’s a review of Yoji Yamada’s Kabei from Twitch reviewer The Visitor.

- The latest film from Japanese director Daisuke Tengen may be attracting lots of attention not because Tengen is the son of late legendary director Shohei Imamura, but because of its…ahem…climatic scene.

-Walking by a Hong Kong video store that sells DVDs of Mainland content will tell you the same thing Variety is about to tell you: Chinese producers are making too many TV series without the airtime to broadcast them.

- Hollywood, now seeing the spending potential of the Chinese population, have devoted more money and time to exploit entertain the Chinese audience with films about and/or filmed in China. However, as the producers of Shanghai has learned, you have to play by the government’s rules.

- One of the films opening in Japan this weekend is the drama Ashita he no Yuigon, about the trial of a Japanese B-class war criminal. The Daily Yomiuri has two articles on it - one on the writers, who had to do thorough research in order to stay objective, and one on the actors, who had to recite actual testimonies from ther real-life counterparts. What they didn’t have is an actual review of the movie.

- Japanese record companies have plenty of ways to make money of fans (one compilation, two differently colored albums, anyone?), but this one takes the cake: the record company of the pop collective AKb48 (48 members and counting) is holding a special concert, and fans only get a chance to go if they get all 44 posters that come with their latest single. Let’s do the math: 1200 yen per single, multiply by 44 copies (only if the buyer happens to get a different poster each time). That means a stupid lucky fan has to spend over 50,000 yen to see the group live. After receiving numerous complaints and possible violation of fair business practices, the record company has now canceled their plans.

The sad part is I can easily imagine a Hong Kong record company doing this, except for the canceling part.

- After finding a few new hits, Korean cinema is now doing what Hollywood does best: Hit films getting potentially unnecessary upcoming sequels include 200 Pounds Beauty, Le Grand Chef, Tezza: The High Rollers, and The Host.

-In 1985, legendary director Akira Kurosawa began filming a documentary while filming for his epic film Ran stopped because of financing problems. However, he never finished the documentary when filming for Ran resumed. Now, his son plans to complete his father’s unfinished film and release it by 2010, the 100th anniversary of the director’s birth.

- Shawn Yue has already been in 4 movies in the past 8 months (Invisible Target, Trivial Matters, Playboy Cops, Shamo), and now we can add another one to the list: Rule #1, the new horror film from Singaporean director Kelvin Tong.

- What do you get for releasing your high-profile, award-winning film with a studio head as your producer uncensored, despite getting a rating that would kill any commercial prospects? An award for freedom of expression from the theater owners who didn’t want you to do so in the first place.

- Two Chinese groups that represent Chinese musicians and songwriters are suing the Chinese search engine Baidu for allowing users to find and download songs for free through its website, thus using illegal downloads to boost its advertising revenues. Copyright © 2002-2018 Ross Chen