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Archive for the ‘animation’ Category

The Golden Rock - July 21st, 2008 Edition

Japan is on a national holiday today, so no box office or drama ratings for now. That shouldn’t stop us from looking at numbers elsewhere.

- The Dark Knight exceeded my personal expectations at the Hong Kong box office. Playing on over 80 screens, the comic book movie made HK$16.44 million over 4 days, including HK$4.76 million on Sunday. Apparently, the “less shows a day” effect didn’t quite hurt in the end because of inflated ticket prices. This already exceeds the total take of the first film in Hong Kong, and with good word-of-mouth, this is likely to be the highest-grossing foreign film of the year.

Before it hits that mark, Kung Fu Panda continues its brief win at the highest-grossing foreign film so far. After 23 days, the animated comedy still managed to make HK$579,000 on Sunday from 37 screens, and a total of HK$28.99 million. Space Chimps didn’t even put much of a dent in business, making HK$740,000 after 4 days.

How Much Money Has Red Cliff Made in Hong Kong?

As of July 20th, Red Cliff has made HK$19.16 million after 11 days.

Red Cliff was probably most affected by The Dark Knight’s opening, because it lost almost 20 screens, mainly at multiplexes that had to turn these screens over to Batman. In these smaller screens, John Woo’s historical epic remained packed, making HK$1.35 million from 39 screens, which means HK$25 million is a viable goal, though HK$30 million will be a bit of a reach.

Ann Hui’s The Way We Are is showing in one theater, who is only giving the film one to two shows a day. With two shows on Sunday, it managed to make HK$12,571, which indicates at least a near sell-out for both shows if average ticket price was HK$50. After 3 days (about 5 showings), Ann Hui’s drama has made roughly HK$30,000.

HK$7.8=USD$1

- In Korea, distributor CJ Entertainment is estimating that Kim Jee-Woon’s The Good, the Bad, and the Weird attracted roughly 2.2 million admissions over its first 4 days, which would make it the best opening this year for a Korean film. I believe this already exceeds the total admission for Kim’s previous film, the film noir A Bittersweet Life.

Korean Herald writes about the film’s English-subtitled screenings in one theater in Seoul, and foreigners use it as an opportunity to gripe about the lack of English subtitles at the theater. They should be lucky they get English subtitles on DVDs.

- Derek Elley reviews John Woo’s Red Cliff from Korea, which means he saw the 131-minute cut version instead of the 140-minute one. He also notes that the Japanese version will be cut as well, although I haven’t read any confirmation about that, especially since the first mass media screening in Japan doesn’t happen until August 1st.

- Meanwhile, other press are picking up on the Ponyo on a Cliff By the Sea’s opening day numbers. Jason Gray translates the previously linked report and writes that the studio’s “83% of Spirited Away” figure is actually an estimate for the film’s ENTIRE run, which means that the rough figure doesn’t mean all that much.

Variety also points out that since Spirited Away opened on 150 less screens, Ponyo may actually be doing worse. However, since there’s no solid numbers, no one can really make any solid numbers out of these statistics, espeically since Saturday and Sunday night numbers will probably be pretty strong because of the holiday on Monday.

- The Japanese variety comedy show Gakkou E Ikou MAX, which is responsible for those clips of Japanese kids speaking to Hollywood celebrities in English, is coming to an end after a 11-year run due to declining ratings.

- Twitch has a link to the first footage from Wilson Yip’s Ip Man, which shows some on-the-set stuff featuring a Donnie Yen with short hair and him throwing some punches.  Meanwhile, Wong Kar-Wai is busy at the Carina Lau-Tony Leung wedding. Really.

- Kaiju Shakedown has the first official poster for the live-action Dragonball movie. I don’t know….

- Tadanobu Asano is slated to star in Kankuro Kudo’s adaptation of his own award-winning play, with a commercial director making his feature film debut.

- Nippon Cinema has the first teaser for Lala Pipo, the sex comedy written by Memories of Matsuko’s Tetsuya Nakashima. I’m surprised it’s already gotten an R-18 rating already. Are these self-imposed, or is the film really done that early?

- Just as the New York Asian Film Festival  wraps up, the KOFIC brings the New York Korean Film Festival to New York City starting August 22nd with films such as Forever the Moment and Open City.

- Congratulations to Kiyoshi Kuroawa, whose Tokyo Sonata won the Best Film Prize at Osian’s Cinefan Film Festival. This marks the second major festival prize for the family drama, including the Grad Prix Prize at Cannes.

-  Korea and China are working to together to produce an animated series called…what the hell is that name?

The Golden Rock - July 20th, 2008 Edition

- We might as well call it the Ponyo on a Cliff weekend here at the blog: Ponyo on the Cliff opened nationwide on a record-breaking 481 screens yesterday (the most ever for a Japanese film). As of opening day, they already recorded that attendance is at 83% of Spirited Away, which stands as the top Japanese moneymaker with 30.4 billion yen. Some are expecting a mega-hit of that magnitude already.

Wait, does that 83% means it’s already 83% of Spirited Away’s opening day, or is that 83% of Spirited Away’s attendance in the same time period? I think it’s the former.

It’s a busy weekend for Japanese kids, as Fuji TV are not hesitiating to push their latest Pokemon film against the Ghibli juggernaut. Fuji TV took the opportunity on opening day to announced that this is the 6th consecutive Pokemon film to sell over 1 million advance tickets, and that they will submit the record to Guinness as “The Film With the Highest Advanced Ticket Sale”. With attendance at 106% of the previous film, they’re expecting it to be the second consecutive Pokemon film to make over 5 billion yen., despite competition from Ghibli and the upcoming Kung Fu Panda.

- It’s Taiwanese music charts time! Christine Fan’s latest compilation album debut at the first place, finally dethroning Jam Hsiao’s album after 4 weeks at the top. Gospel music group Joshua Band saw a 3rd place debut, just on top of Korean boy band Super Junior - Happy. The Lollipop boys from the Channel V talent show split into two groups and release their own single. Fans have obviously chosen their favorite, putting one group at 5th place and leaving the other at 8th.

- Viz Media, who has brought some excellent Japanese films to North America, will be entering the production world and will take advantage of their large catalog of Japanese comics.

- Two recent award-winning actors are working together in Adrift in Tokyo’s Satoshi Miki’s latest film.

- Also, shooting is under way for the new Andrew Lau film, which stars Andy Lau and Shu Qi. The dance film also stars Ella Koon, Denise Ho, and Lam Ka Wah, and is slated to be released at the end of the year or beginning of next year.

- I also grabbed a shot of the possible poster for Alan Mak/Felix Chong’s Lady Cop and Papa Crook (thanks to Tim Youngs for the heads up!). Starring Eason Chan and Sammi Cheng, the film opens on September 11th.

img_0234.JPG

- Jason Gray reports on the premiere of Yoji Yamada’s latest work, a filmed stage performance of a Kabuki play and marks the first time one with a major film director in charge.

- TV Tokyo will be making their first daytime drama, adapting a radio drama that was later adapted into comic form. Currently, TV Tokyo shows dubbed Korean dramas during that time slot. I guess that tradition is coming to an end.

- Japan Times has an article on actress Aoi Miyazaki, who is currently starring in the NHK historical drama Atsuhime, and will next be seen on the big screen in Children in the Dark, about child prostitution in Southest Asia.

- Ahead of the Olympics, China is tightening even further by banning artists and performers that “threaten national soverignty”, meaning that any artist who even said one bad word about China will not be able to perform there. Apparently, there’s no official list, but some of these people may be Bjork, Steven Spielberg, and Sharon Stone. Saying that China is improving on human rights is like saying getting stabbed by the sharp end of a broken cue stick is an improvement over getting stabbed by a sword.

- Somewhat off-topic, but being a big fan of Hot Fuzz, I feel obliged to report it. The film only made it to the shores of Japan because over 2300 people reportedly signed a petition to bring the film to the big screen. Thankfully, it paid off, as the film attracted 3865 admissions from 4 screens during its opening weekend two weeks ago, making 5.72 million yen. I wish it all the success and all the word-of-mouth it can get.

The Golden Rock - July 19th, 2008 Edition

- Hayao Miyazaki’s latest Ponyo on a Cliff opens today in Japan, and The Daily Yomiuri has a review by staff writer Christoph Mark. There’s also a piece on the young actress who voiced the cute titular character.

Also, Japan Times’ Mark Schilling has a review for the new Guilala movie, in which a monster attacks the G8 Summit.

- So the distributor forKim Jee-Woon’s The Good, the Bad, and the Weird, is actually expecting the film to pass the 2 million viewer mark by the end of the weekend after it attracted 400,000 admissions on opening day. I forgot that it opened on a Thursday.

- According to head of Hong Kong’s Sundream Tsui Siu Ming, he expects the Anthony Wong-Jo Odagiri-starring film directed by Yu Liwei to get into the Venice Film Festival. Then again, Tsui has a thing for self-promotion if on his cable network, though he’s not the first studio head to do that, and he won’t be the last, either.

- Speaking of film festivals, the Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival opened yesterday.

- Plus, the San Sebestian Film Festival will have a 43-film retrospective for Japanese film noir, which will span from Kurosawa to Imamura to Kitano to even Miike. Man, I would love to watch Battles Without Honor or Humanity on the big screen.

- This week’s Televiews column on the Daily Yomiuri offers up plenty of compliments for current drama Yottsu no Uso and the final episode of CHANGE. The one with the 22-minute speech by Kimura Takuya done in one take.

-In addition to Paco and the Magic Book, Tetsuya Nakashima also had time to write the script for Lala Pipo, about an office lady who becomes a porn star. Masayuki Miyano is directing.

- Happy Flight, the latest from Waterboys and Swing Girls director Shinobu Yaguichi, already has a website and a teaser on it, even though it doesn’t open until November. Haruka Ayase doing another comedy after Hotaru no Hikari is good enough reason for me to see it.

- By the way, check out Apple Daily for a picture of the guy who’s suing Dreamworks over Kung Fu Panda. His panda doesn’t even have eyes, someone should sue him for that.

The Golden Rock - July 28th, 2008 Edition

- The Dark Knight scored a huge opening at the Hong Kong box office yesterday. Opening on 84 screens (the largest opening since CJ7 during Lunar New Year), the superhero crime epic made HK$3.24 million. With shows sold out left and right, as well as a ticket price increase, I wouldn’t be surprised if the film makes HK$15 million by the end of the weekend. With around 150 screens, everything not named Red Cliff are forced to share screens with only a few shows a day. Even Space Chimps, which only has a Cantonese-dubbed version with EEG stars, is only getting a few shows during the day. On 25 screens, the animated film made only HK$139,000 and will likely be a more attractive video fare anyway.

How Much Money has Red Cliff Made in Hong Kong?

According to now.com, Red Cliff has made HK$15.44 million after 8 days.

While box office gross has slowly significantly, online sales indicate that John Woo’s historical epic will still have a falrly good weekend. More when the numbers are out on Monday.

- Mamoru Ishii’s newly digitized version of Ghost in the Shell opened last weekend on 5 screens across Japan, and it did spectacular business. Within the first two days, it made 13.19 million yen with a per-screen average of 2.63 million yen (roughly USD$25,000). It’ll be expanding this weekend, taking over two of Speed Racer’s screens in Tokyo and probably elsewhere at major cities.

- Twitch’s X reports that Kim Jee-Woon’s The Good, the Bad, and the Weird saw 400,000 admissions for its opening day, which means it’ll fly past the million admissions mark by the end of the weekend. Also, Warner Bros. has reportedly offered Kim to direct a real Western flick in Hollywood.

In other Korean box office news, The Public Enemy Returns reached the 4 million admissions barrier just ahead of the invasion of The Good, the Bad, and the Weird.

- It’s trailers time! First we have a full-length trailer for the omnibus film Tokyo!. Then there’s a teaser for the film adaptation of the Japanese drama Galileo. Lastly, there’s also a teaser for Benny Chan’s Connected, which is the official remake of the Hollywood film Cellular. Looks like it’s considerably more violent too.

- Under “courts actually waste their time with this?!” news today, the performance artist who criticized Kung Fu Panda before its opening is now suing the filmmakers in Chinese court for an apology. Amazing, the court accepted his case.

A Japanese company has signed a deal to open 4 IMAX theaters in Japan. If I remember correctly, previous IMAX theaters, including one in central Tokyo where I saw Batman Begins 3 years ago, closed down across Japan. How are they going to make it work this time?

- Han Cinema has been reporting new from the set of two Korean dramas. Not sure if they just happen to share the same name or otherwise, but it seems like there are now drama adaptations of Hur Jin Ho’s Happiness and Kim Jee-Woon’s A Bittersweet Life in the works.

The Golden Rock - July 17th, 2008 Edition

How much money has Red Cliff made in Hong Kong?

According to now.com, Red Cliff has made HK$14.67 million after 7 days.

- The results for the Nikkan Sport Drama Grand Prix for the Spring 2008 season has been announced, and CHANGE barely beat Last Friends to win the Best Drama prize, although the drama hadn’t ended when the voting began. Kimura Takuya also took home Best Actor, beating Rookie’s Ryuta Sato. Around 40’s Yuki Amami won Best Actress, and Last Friends didn’t go home empty-handed, thanks to supporting acting awards for Ryu Nishikido and Juri Ueno.

- In addition to 1949, John Woo will be revealing another upcoming project at the upcoming ComicCon in the United States, a comic adaptation about King Arthur and his knights as gunslingers in the 19th century Pacific Northwest.

- Twitch reveals that there’s a possibility of a Jewel in the Palace film to be directed by none other than Zhang Yimou.

- As usual, Disney will be bringing over Hayao Miyazaki’s latest film Ponyo on a Cliff By the Sea to America, and this time Frank Marshall and Kathleen Kennedy will be responsible for putting the American version together.

- An advanced screening has already been held for Ping Pong director Fumihiko Sori’s Ichi, starring young actress Haruka Ayase (currently selling Panasonic SD cards on Japanese trains) as the famous blind swordswoman character. Nippon Cinema reveals the character has actually undergone some major changes, including her occupation.

- Johnnie To has signed up as a jury member under president Wim Wenders at the upcoming Venice Film Festival.

- Twitch has an interview with famous Japanese animation director Satoshi Kon.

- With Japan going into full digital bradcasting in 3 years, a government authority is trying to crack down on the amount of infomercials shown on these digital channels.

The Golden Rock - July 11th, 2008 Edition

- And it was a huge opening day for John Woo’s Red Cliff here at the Hong Kong box office. Despite a running time of 140 minutes (which means less shows, despite an inflated ticket price), the historical epic made HK$2 million from 60 screens, and newspapers are even reporting sold-out shows in the afternoon. Shows will likely be added over the weekend, and it’ll also likely hit the HK$10 million mark by the end of the weekend.

For kids who don’t care about the Three Kingdoms, Japanese animated film Keroro did fairly well also, opening on 30 screens for an opening day take of HK$776,000, and will also see a fair boost in business over the weekend, as kids films often do. It will also take away a chunk of audience for Kung Fu Panda, which made HK$569,000 from 54 screens on its 13th day of release. More on Monday.

Variety also looks at Red Cliff’s openings in other Asian countries.

- Japan Times’ Mark Schilling has posted what must be the first English-language review of Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo on a Cliff by the Sea.

- It first broke on Ryuganji, and now it’s pretty much everywhere: Japanese detective drama Aibou, whose film adapatation is the biggest hit for the first half of 2008, will be going the Bayside Shakedown route already with a spinoff film for one of its supporting characters.

- The latest Mummy film, shot and set in China as one of the highest-profile Chinese co-productions to date, is reportedly having its release held up by Chinese censorship authories, even though they shot with an approved script.

Saving more news for the weekend entries. See you then.

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The Golden Rock - July 9th, 2008 Edition

- It’s Japanese Oricon charts time! GReeeN!!! rules the album charts for the second week in a row, fending off newcomers Ellegarden and Shiina Ringo (debuting at 2nd and 4th place, respectively). Meanwhile, YUI’s latest takes the top spot at the singles chart in its first week.

More over at Tokyograph.

- Not surprisingly, Kung Fu Panda has now made 135 million yuan in China, making it the highest-grossing animated film in China ever.

- Ryuganji translate an editorial that puts into simple numbers why TV drama adaptations will continue in Japanese cinema as long as just a fraction of its audience goes to see the films.

- Grady Hendrix of Kaiju Shakedown writes about Asian actors participation in the latest Batman flick, including thespian/photo-addict Edison Chen’s one line in the film.

- Under “casting news” today, Jun Matsumoto will be starring in a drama special that is part of Nippon TV’s annual charity program. Matsumoto, hot off the success of Hana Yori Dango Final, is one of the two hosts of the 24-hour program.

Meanwhile, Takako Matsu will be starring alongside Tananobu Asano in a new film based on a story by Osamu Daza. Actually, I don’t believe this is Matsu’s first starring role, since she did star in April Story, which runs just barely over feature film running time of 60 minutes.

Lastly, Hideaki Ito will be playing the villain in the troubled Yoichi Sai production The Legend of Kamui. Wait a minute, Ekin Cheng is in it too!

- Major Japanese film distributor Shochiku has finally started its own Youtube channel for their own trailers. My Youtube source got shut down recently, but trailers are not hard to come by if one searches harder for them anyway. They’re at least on official website (with the exception of Ponyo and many Hong Kong films, of course).

- Speaking of trailers, Nippon Cinema has the full-length trailer for Tetsuya Nakashima’s Paco and the Magic Picture Book, and I’d say it makes the film look a lot more promising than its teasers did.

-  China will be the shooting location for a new film that will be shot using the innovative 4k digital technology, which holds 4 times the data of a usual digital movie. Of course, the word “dragon” is required to be in the title.

-The poor 400 orphan films that lost their home when UK distributor Tartan went under 2 weeks ago have found a new home with a new distributor, who will continue to buy films with the Tartan name attached.

The Golden Rock - July 3rd, 2008 Edition

Heading off to Tokyo one last time tomorrow, and heading back to Hong Kong on Sunday, so this will probably be the last entry until Monday.

- Japan’s Emobile has pulled their latest ad, which features their mascot, a monkey, at the podium of a crowded rally for change, which is meant to resemble the Barack Obama campaign. Of course, Americans believe that they’re the center of the world and think that the Japanese actually know about way to insult an African American, one of which is to compare them to monkeys. If Americans are that culturally sensitive, there wouldn’t Rush Hour movies, Kung Fu Panda, and I Survived a Japanese Game Show. Then again, if Japanese are that culturally sensitive, one of the comedians on a variety show wouldn’t have called Bobby Ologun “Jero” and “Billy” (as in Billy Blank).

- According to Apple Daily, Stephen Chow is teaming up with a Taiwanese film company to bring back Journey to the West (which he explored in the Chinese Odyssey films). According to the Hong Kong Film blog, Chow wanted to take the monk role, but was pressured by the financiers to take on the Monkey King role once more. The way the blog spins this story is that Chow is suffering from the critical bashing from CJ7 because he appeased the Mainland censors too much, and now needs to dig back out old material to please his audience and his financiers again. No word on whether he’ll be directing or just acting like he did with the previous films.

- Kaiju Shakedown clears up that the so-called Warlords DVD from yesterday’s post is not the Jet Li-Andy Lau-Peter Chan Warlords.

- Twitch has a 5-minute-plus promo clip from Mamoru Oshii’s Sky Crawlers.

They also have that 9-minute promo clip for John Woo’s Red Cliff that was shown at Cannes. The Oriental Daily asked stars what they thought of the film at the premiere, and they apparently all liked it. Then again, what with saying the trouble one can get in from saying the wrong thing and this being Oriental Daily, take it with a grain of salt.

- Yesterday I reported that Taiwan may lift their ban of Mainland performers, and now Chinese broadcasting organization Phoenix Broadcasting has applied again for landing rights on the island after Mainland media was banned from the island in 2005.

- Jason Gray points out that the official website for Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Tokyo Sonata has been updated with a classy new trailer. The trailer is also on Youtube if you want a slightly larger version.

- Variety’s Derek Elley has a review of Help, which is being touted as China’s first all-out horror film.

See you all back from Hong Kong on Monday.

The Golden Rock - June 30th, 2008 Edition

Not much time today, so I’m leaving the number crunching for tomorrow.

- Something has captured the premiere of the first trailer for Hayao Miyazaki’s Ponyo on a Cliff By the Sea from the NTV morning show. Yukie Nakama is onscreen because she was on the show to promote the final episode of Gokusen, hence the Yankumi look and all. There’s also a second longer trailer in Japanese theaters that I saw, but for now, I dare you to try get that song out of your head.

Also in the world of Japanese trailers, there’s an official trailer for the mega-budget 20th Century Boys, which already has advertisements on TV several times a day, and actually shows off more than this trailer.  There’s also the second teaser for Tetsuya Nakashima’s latest Paco and the Magic Picture Book. On the other hand, from the well-known assemble cast to the screenful of cgi, this seems to have the ingredient for a mega-disaster, even if I’m a big fan of Nakashima’s work.

- Nippon cinema has a write-up on the release of the Hana Yori Dango movie, and even reports that the first day attendance seems to point to a mega 10 billion yen take. More when the numbers do come out.

- The Korean Grand Bell Awards happened last night, and The Chaser was the big winner by taking home six awards, including Best Film, Best Director, and Best Actor. Meanwhile, Yunjin Kim picked up the Best Actress Award for the thriller Seven Days, which somehow managed to pick up the Best Editing Award too. Andrew Lau must be proud.

- This all comes on the heels of a critical summer season for Korean films. With The Public Enemy Returns as the first Korean film to top the box office in 3 months, the major studios are now turning to tentpole blockbusters instead of horror films to battle the Hollywood monsters.

- Korean Star Song Hye-Kyo has not only signed up to star in John Woo’s latest film; she’s also joining producer Terence Cheng’s newly-formed talent agency. It’s no surprise, as Song has made a name for herself in the Chinese-speaking region for her roles in several well-known Korean dramas. This is also the agency co-founded by Michelle Yeoh and reportedly took on Isabella Leung, resulting in the current legal debacle.

- The sale of Universe Entertainment by major stockholder Daneil Lam has reported been canceled, though not much else is known.

- After announcing their move into talent management and film, major Japanese record label Avex will be producing their own musical that will feature 21 classic songs from the label’s artists.

- The controversial Chinese search engine Baidu has signed up for a major partnership with three major record companies to provide legal music streaming on its site. Now the Western record labels just need to learn how to play nice.

The Golden Rock - June 23rd, 2008 Edition

- While the Hollywood blockbusters took over the weekend at the Hong Kong box office, the big story is the impressive performance for Johnnie To’s Sparrow. With no real box office draw (Trust me, Simon Yam is not a considered a box office draw by himself in Hong Kong), the film saw a boost over the weekend with the adult audience, making HK$800,000 from 31 screens for a 4-day weekend total of HK$2.82 million. This already nearly matches the box office total for PTU, To’s last film with such an extended shoot. As for the Hollywood films, Narnia made HK$1.01 million from 47 screens for an 18-day total of HK$22.07 million, which means it has now surpassed Iron Man and is aiming to match Indiana Jones‘ HK$26 million take in Hong Kong. At second place is The Incredible Hulk, with HK$852,000 from 33 screens for a 11-day total of HK$9.96 million. Business is proving to be a little slow, though that could be because of its relatively low screen count.

Hollywood parody flick Superhero Movie is doing much better than Meet the Spartans, with HK$582,000 from 21 screens on Sunday for a 4-day total of HK$2.11 million. As for limited releases, 21 did very well with its 2-screen release, making HK$64,000 for a 4-day total of HK$190,000. However, the Lawrence Lau co-directed film City Without Baseball did even worse over the weekend, with only HK$36,000 from 8 screens on Sunday for a 4-day total of HK$170,000. Similarly painful is Tsui Hark’s Missing, with only HK$74,000 from 15 screens and a 11-day total of HK$1.17 million. However, it supposedly managed to make nearly 10 million RMB over its opening weekend in China, making it a psuedo-hit (I emphasize psuedo because the budget is surely higher than that.).

- Still waiting for the relevant numbers from Japan and Korea. Meanwhile, Koki Mitani is still working hard to pimp his hit film The Magic Hour, which has now made 2 billion yen and attracted 1.6 million admissions, by running around 5 different theaters to do meet-and-greet sessions at 8 different shows over a course of 24 hours over the weekend (the last show being a 1:20 am show). Hong Kong film should promote themselves like that.

- A Russian film took the top prize at the Shanghai Internatonal Film Festival, while a local film took home the Jury Grand Prix and Best Actor. Taiwanese director Leste Chen also managed to win the Most Creative Award with the pitch for his latest film.

Also, Chinese director Wang Chao also managed to get enough funding to start shooting his next film at the same marketplace during the SIFF.

- Meanwhile, the New York Asian Film Festival has kicked off, with Hollywood Reporter giving it coverage for its first day. You can also keep up with the festival happenings from the Subway Cinema news blog.

- The Death Note films have won the DVD Data award in the Japanese films category. The hit comic-based films sold 260,000 copies as a set, making it the 10th best-selling DVD of 2007. Similar sales are expected for spin-off film L, coming out this week in Japan.

-  Last week, I included a link to the latest trailer for the animated version Storm Riders, and now the Hollywood Reporter reports that the film is complete and is set for a 200-screen release next month. 200 screens seem a little small, though, even for an animated film.

- The Japanese comic Kodomo no Kodomo is being brought to live-action from the director of last year’s Shindo. I saw a short teaser for this when I went to watch Yasukuni and have to say I was already a little disturbed. Now I’m even more disturbed to know that they actually did a series of comics with this story.  The Japanese name translate to “A Child’s Child”. Obviously, this isn’t a major studio-funded film.

 
 
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