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Note: This blog expresses only the opinions of the blog owner,
and does not represent the opinion of any organization or blog
that is associated with The Golden Rock.

The Golden Rock - November 3rd, 2008 Edition

Japan had a public holiday today, so a lot of figures can’t be updated yet, as well as less news. We’ll just have to do with what we got.

- Detroit Metal City expanded its dominance of the Hong Kong box office, especially after exhibitors added 7 more screens after its great opening day gross. From 26 screens, the crazy Japanese comedy made HK$929,000 on Sunday for a 4-day weekend total of HK$3.16 million. It’s certain that it’ll do better than 20th Century Boys, but we’ll wait and see whether it’ll do Death Note numbers.  On the other hand, Saw V didn’t get the adult audience boost that category III films get over the weekend. From 25 screens, the horror sequel made only HK$368,000 on Sunday for a 4-day weekend total of HK$1.57 million.

On the other hand, family film City of Ember did get a minor family film boost over the weekend with a Sunday take of HK$237,000 from 22 screens for a 4-day weekend total of HK$840,000. The indie comedy Smart People didn’t do so well, making HK$91,000 from 10 screens for a 4-day total of just HK$320,000. Miki Kotani’s hilarious The Magic Hour did much better on its limited release run over the weekend, making HK$40,000 from just 2 screens on Sunday for a 4-day weekend total of HK$130,000.

As for other films, High School Musical 3 got its weekend boost, making HK$813,000 from 40 screens on Sunday for a 10-day total of HK$7.64 million, which means it’ll definitely break the HK$10 million barrier. Tropic Thunder hangs on fairly well in its second weekend, making HK$486,000 from 31 screens for a 11-day total of HK$5.76 million, and has already has a better Hong Kong gross than Ben Stiller’s last film The Heartbreak Kid. Ridley Scott’s Body of Lies has a 24-day total of HK$5.89 million (so close to that HK$6 million!!!!), Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona has a 24-day total of HK$2.8 million, and Jingle Ma’s Butterfly Lovers is a bit of a bust, with just HK$5.74 million after 24 days.

-Tsui Siu-Ming’s martial arts-themed Champions also had preview screenings over the weekend here in Hong Kong. However, the Hong Kong Film blog looked at the ticket presales and saw a strange pattern. While most films would first sell out the middle and back rows, the seat charts the blogger found saw seat sales all over the place, including those in the front rows sold before those in the back were. Were those seats already bought out to create the illusion of packed preview screenings? Or were they just bought up to be passed out internally? Either way, it certainly seems shady.

- The American Film Market is about to get underway on Wednesday, one day after the U.S. presidential election and smack dab in the middle of a financial crisis. With Pusan and Tokyo already happening in the last two months, how will Asian films do at the market? Variety looks at expectations the attendees have before it all begins.

Japan’s Avex just paid one of the highest prices ever paid by a Japanese company for a Korean drama, except that it just flopped in the ratings with only a 7.1% for its premiere episode.

Not much news, and it’s getting late. So let’s wrap it up here. Hopefully there’s more tomorrow.

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