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The Golden Rock - September 12th, 2008 Edition

- It’s looking like another crowded weekend at the Hong Kong box office this weekend, with at least 4 wide releases. Debuting at the top is the Hollywood musical Mamma Mia, which opened on 34 screens for an opening day take of HK$395,000. This is likely to attract more adult audiences as the holiday weekend rolls around, so it’s looking to do fairly well. In second place is the Thai horror omnibus 4BIA, which made HK$214,000 from 27 screens on opening day. Not opening so well is the Japanese doggie film 10 Promises with My Dog, which made just HK$206,000 from 35 screens. The distributor is likely hoping that it’ll do solid long-term business like A Tale of Mari and Three Puppies did earlier in the year. Rounding out the wide releases is the Simon Yam-produced Ocean Flames, which made only HK$80,000 from 26 screens. Some multiplexes have already panicked and reduced the number of daily showings for over the weekend.

Actually, two major Hong Kong releases were scheduled to come out for the holiday weekend - Jingle Ma’s Butterfly Lovers and Alan Mak/Felix Chong’s Lady Cop and Papa Crook. However, both films were moved to October, with Mei Ah citing that they never officially scheduled the September release date (despite the fact that they ran promotions with the September date in mind), while Mak and co. citing that their film needs further post-production tweaking. Hence, another holiday weekend goes to waste for HK cinema. More when the numbers are out on Tuesday.

- Japan has announced that they will be sending the recent award-winner Departures (or Okuribito) to try for the Best Foreign Film award at the Academy Awards this year.

-It’s reviews time! First, the Daily Yomiuri’s Ikuko Kitagawa has a review of Departures, then Japan Times’ Mark Schilling has the likely first English review for Tetsuya Nakashima’s latest Paco and the Magic Book, and Variety’s Robert Koehler gives his take on Rian Johnson’s The Brothers Bloom, which is included here because Rinko Kikuchi has a supporting role in the film.

- Johnnie To/Wai Ka Fai’s Mad Detective has picked up another award, this time the Audience Award at the 2nd annual Changmuro International Film Festival. Hur Jin Ho’s Happiness also picked up the Discovery Award.

- This year’s big Japanese pop hit Soba Ni Iru Ne just won’t go away, as now it has been recognized by the Guinness World Record as the song with the most cell phone downloads.

3 Responses to “The Golden Rock - September 12th, 2008 Edition”

  1. wisekwai Says:

    That’s good news about 4bia. It’s one of my favorite films this year. I wonder if there will be an English-friendly DVD release in Hong Kong anytime soon?

  2. GoldenRockProductions Says:

    Hi, wisekwai,

    4Bia is actually advertised pretty aggressively here, so the opening isn’t considered great by any means. However, it is a holiday weekend, and on so many screens, it’ll probably do fairly well.

    As for DVD, it depends on who’s releasing it. The last major Thai release, Chocolate, didn’t get English subtitles for its DVD, even though the theatrical version came with English subtitles. I’m pretty sure it was part of the distribution deal.

  3. jaccstev Says:

    I love this film and it’s great to see how it moves on the international market. 4bia is truly one of the best horror films come out this year. From the four parts, my most favorite one is “The Middle Man”. The story is clever, the acting is natural and its successfully build the horror atmosphere with some hilarious scenes.

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