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June 30, 2005


Fedex has just instituted a ban on shipping all 35mm and 70mm film prints to Japan. No one I spoke to seems to know why this was instituted or how long it will last, but that's their new policy. One rep did kinda sorta ask if the films were adult in nature, so maybe they got in trouble by accidentally shipping some porn. But that raises the logical question: who on earth owns a 35mm or 70mm print of porn anymore?

Anyone able to shed some light on this?

UPS still delivers 35mm prints to Japan with the greatest of ease.

June 30, 2005 at 10:10 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (1)

June 29, 2005


Lara Dutta stars in AMARJEETBollywood's ban on smoking in movies kicks it up a notch and takes it to the next level, BAM! Brace yourselves for AMARJEET, the anti-big-tobacco thriller starring Bollywood also-ran and Miss Universe winner, Lara Dutta. It's being directed by commercial and music video director Shoojit Sircar and his big headache is that since smoking is banned effective October 2 he can't show it in his anti-smoking, ERIN BROKOVICH-styled thriller. He's asking for a special consideration so he can show poor role models huffing on cancer sticks in his flick.

As Dutta says, "This film is not about sermons. This is a commercial film with a social message. It is a story of a woman from a small town in Punjab who takes on the mighty tobacco industry. She does not have the experience to deal with such a big step, and her movement snowballs into a huge movement."  Which is very special since the anti-smoking movement in Bollywood is not a grassroots movement but the brainchild of the Union Health Ministry that has been widely criticized.

AMARJEET is slated for January 2006.

June 29, 2005 at 08:20 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Hollywood Silver-Ager, Jean Simmons, isn't just the voice of Sophie in Hayao Miyazaki's HOWL'S MOVING CASTLE, she's also part of the voice cast in China's first computer-animated film, THRU THE MOEBIUS STRIP. Designed by French comics artist Jean "Moebius" Giraud, it's a Jolly-Rancher-colored sci-fi/fantasy flick, and having seen some of the footage I'm sorry to report that it has all the charm and magic of giant clomps of chewed rubber bumping into scraps of plasticine.

Check out the impossible-to-navigate THRU THE MOEBIUS STRIP website, where they lead off their press page with a giant photo of two dragonflies humping.

June 29, 2005 at 07:18 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Great waves of stuntmen (and women) generally come from great teachers, and there's another name to add to the list these days: Panna Rittikrai. Just as Hong Kong's classic action performers can generally be traced back to Master Yu Jim-yuen and Madame Fan Fok-fa, Thailand's wave of increasingly-visible stunt-studs can be laid at the feet of Panna Rittikrai.

An action choreographer and film director, Rittikrai made both the original and recent versions of BORN TO FIGHT, the stunt-showcase that's been sowing carnage around the globe. He also trained ONG BAK's Tony Jaa, and did the action choreography in both that film and the upcoming TOM YUM GOONG. And now, you can read about his student Kawee Sirikhanaerat who's been crushed by a column in TOMB RAIDER 2, and gets beaten up in BATMAN BEGINS in this Bangkok Post story.

June 29, 2005 at 06:38 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 28, 2005


A pretty cool poster for 2000's TEARS OF THE BLACK TIGERWisit Sasanatieng is one of the world's most visually-inventive directors, but North American audiences wouldn't know it. His first movie, 2000's TEARS OF THE BLACK TIGER, has vanished into the Miramax vaults and indications show that it may never emerge. His second film, 2004's CITIZEN DOG, was picked up by Luc Besson's Europa Corp., and while they've announced they will be distributing it to North American film festivals, nothing has been finalized. Given the current state of Thai film in the US, and the word-of-mouth on the movie, it would seem that it will be viewed by a pretty small audience over here, if at all.

But Europa has signed on as co-producer of Wisit Sasanatieng's third movie, a foodie fantasia called Namprix. The movie was conceived in 2002, but shelved because, according to Sasanatieng, "it needed a huge budget." Fortunately, despite his niche appeal thus far, he's been able to come up with said "huge budget" and production is underway.

The English-speaking world waits with bated breath, fingers crossed that this time we'll finally get to see one of Sasanatieng's movies before it goes cold.

June 28, 2005 at 10:20 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack


Andrew Lau and Alan Mak the team behind the INFERNAL AFFAIRS series, has unleashed their car-racing flick, INITIAL D, on Asian audiences and the movie is, predictably, setting records. In Mainland China it's opened as the number one film of the year so far, and in Hong Kong it was number one over the weekend.

Based on a popular Japanese anime about street racing, INITIAL D, is being heralded as crunchy summertime fun, although hardcore fans of the anime are apparently ripping the film a new one for unfaithfulness to its source material.

(Thanks to Mobius Home Video Forum and Hong Kong Entertainment News in Review)

June 28, 2005 at 10:19 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Stanley Kwan is the George Cukor of Hong Kong: a gifted director of actresses, and a man with a near-flawless sensibility who's been able to put insanely delicate emotions onscreen with perfect taste. Jackie Chan has produced two of Kwan's previous films and both of them are masterpieces: ROUGE (starring the now-deceased Anita Mui and Leslie Cheung) and CENTER STAGE (starring a radiant Maggie Cheung).

Now Chan and Kwan have teamed up for EVERLASTING REGRET, a decades-spanning saga set in Shanghai and it's shaping up to be gorgeous. It's a little reminiscent of Wong Kar-wai's IN THE MOOD FOR LOVE but I get a feeling Kwan is going to out-lush Wong's film. Apparently, Shanghai siren, Rebecca Pan (who played the landlady in ITMFL), was hired as a behavior and manners coach for star Sammi Cheng, and in early footage, Cheng is a spitting image of Pan. The flick also stars the ever reliable Tony Leung Kar-fai and the obligatory Daniel Wu.

But Sammi Cheng has been embroiled in a perfect storm of media speculation since March when she started looking unhealthy and acting funny. The gossiping classes have attributed her behavior (which apparently includes banging her head against walls on the set and collapsing into tears) to everything from lymphatic cancer to depression to man trouble. Close friends say that this is just the kind of Method acting that Cheng, who's best known for her performances in light romantic comedies, engages in, but even Tony Leung Kar-fai was reportedly unnerved by some of her behavior.

EVERLASTING REGRET was made simulatneously into a movie and a TV series, and whereas the TV series is already completed, the movie is taking longer than anticipated.

Click here for pictures of Jackie Chan visiting the set and meeting a happy-looking Sammi, a hip hop looking Tony Leung and glimpse a shockingly feral-looking Wille Chan (Jackie's longtime manager).

(Thanks to Hong Kong Entertainment News in Review)

June 28, 2005 at 10:18 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack


Monkey Peaches is reporting that it was actually NOT Jet Li who fell 40 feet from a platform during the filming of Ronny Yu's martial arts film HUO YUANJIA. Best wishes for a speedy recovery go to the hapless stunt jockey who sustained minor injuries instead of Li.

June 28, 2005 at 10:17 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 24, 2005


Festivals are announcing their line-ups all over. Here you can find the Toronto Film Festival's initial line-up (thanks to Twitch). There's only about 200 more films to be announced, and nothing from their excellent Midnight Madness sidebar is up yet.

In the spirit of fierce Canadian pride, here's the line-up for Montreal's Fantasia Film Festival with lots and lots of genre madness, including the delightful Thai cannibal/serial-killer flick ZEE OUI and Japan's favorite hi-skool comedy manga turned into feature film, CROMARTIE HIGH SCHOOL.

Korea's Puchon Fantastic Film Festival announced its line-up of 172 films, with special focuses on erotica and Egyptian cinema as well as on directors Park Chul-Soo and Ko Young-Nam, and the breakaway rival festival (created by staff fired from Puchon last year), the Real Fantastic Film Festival, announced their 64 film line-up, including the sidebar, MARX ATTACKS: SCI FI MOVIES FROM EASTERN EUROPE. You can see their freaky website here. (Thanks to Kung Fu Cult Cinema)

June 24, 2005 at 12:15 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Maggie Q will star in 'Mission Impossible 3'Hong Kong's Maggie Q has been cleared by top-level Thetans as A-OK to star as a "good character" in MISSION IMPOSSIBLE 3 with Tom Cruise, according to this article.

The article goes on to state that Maggie's father is American, her mother is Vietnamese, but we are all children of L Ron.

(To see more of Maggie, click on the photo.)

June 24, 2005 at 12:11 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 23, 2005


'Kamikaze Girls' plays the New York Asian Film Festival, Fantasia and the Los Angeles Film FestivalKAMIKAZE GIRLS, the fabu new 2004 Japanese flick about feisty femme friends in the boonies, just got an English-language website, courtesy of Viz.

It's playing in the New York Asian Film Festival, Fantasia, and the Los Angeles Film Festival but only at San Diego's Comicon can you:

"Come See Genuine 'GothLolis' at Comic-Con 2005! Meet genuine Gothic Lolitas at our booth at Comic-Con 2005!"

Which makes it sound like they keep them in a cage behind a curtain and feed them bananas when they perform their tricks and don't bite the customers.

June 23, 2005 at 09:33 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0)


While shooting Ronny Yu's HUO YUANJIA in China, Jet Li took a misstep and plummetted 40 feet before coming to a sudden stop on a safety mat, yesterday. Being a total hoss he only suffered minor injuries.

Who is Huo Yuanjia? He's the master of the character Jet Li played in FIST OF LEGEND, but whereas the FIST OF LEGEND character was fictional, Huo is real.

You can learn more about this somewhat confusing movie over at Monkey Peaches which is stuffed with paparazzi photos of Jet on the set.

June 23, 2005 at 09:29 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Terence Chang has produced many of John Woo's biggest movies, and he and the Woo-ster have been somewhat joined at the hip for years. But after producing the non-Woo BULLETPROOF MONK, I guess Chang decided that it was better to make bad movies than to make no movies at all. He's now signed on to produce debut director Alexi Tan's $5 million Thai action movie, DETOUR. No telling yet if it'll be a step up from BULLETPROOF MONK, but that shouldn't be too hard to do.

June 23, 2005 at 09:28 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 20, 2005


The English-language SEVEN SWORDS website is live.

(Thanks to Twitch for pointing this out)

June 20, 2005 at 09:30 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


BusinessWeek has a cover story on anime and how it's not as ready to rule the world as everybody previously believed.

June 20, 2005 at 09:29 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Jackie Chan wants foreigners to marry "Shanghai ladies", he said at the Shanghai International Film Festival. "It will help spread Chinese culture far and wide," he beamed.

Meanwhile, Russians want their women to marry fewer Chinese men.

In other Chinese marriage news, People magazine selected Stephen Chow as one of its "50 Hottest Bachelors".

"The global movie market still has a lot of room for me," the quiet actor said. And how.

Finally, unmarried singer/actress Faye Wong is rumored to be pregnant with her second child. She and her boyfriend, Li Yapeng, registered to marry in March. Wong, who stars in Wong Kar-wai's 2046, recently announced that she was retiring from showbiz.

(Thanks to Hong Kong Entertainment News in Review)

June 20, 2005 at 09:28 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 15, 2005


Chinese director, Feng Xiaogang, has brought together the CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON crew to work on his new, "Hamlet"-inspired, big budget flick, BANQUET, which is due out in Spring 2006.

Tan Dun (tunes!), Yuen Wo-ping (hitting!) and Tim Yip (decorating!) have been announced as the behind-the-camera team before a single word about any of the cast has shown up.

Feng's last movie is WORLD WITHOUT THIEVES, which did great business in China last year.

The movie is being produced by Huayi Brothers film, the company behind KUNG FU HUSTLE, WORLD WITHOUT THIEVES and the upcoming manga adaptation, BATTLE OF WISDOM, directed by Jacob Cheung and starring Andy Lau.

June 15, 2005 at 04:39 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


John Woo may be setting a record for the most number of announced film projects in development. While he actually makes classics like PAYCHECK and WINDTALKERS he has announced -

- HE-MAN, the Masters of the Universe flick
- THE RED CIRCLE, a remake of the Jean Pierre Melville flick
- SPY HUNTER, with The Rock
- EVITA 2, the sequel nobody wanted
- THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, with John Travolta
- ESPIONAGE FOR DUMMIES, based on the "for Dummies" book series
- FACE/OFF 2, although that seemed to be more of a rumor than official

And now a new, untitled project. There's even an article about it here.

I'm hoping he never makes another movie again and just keeps announcing them. The image of an elderly Woo, rattling his cane and bouncing in his barcalounger as he announces the live-action MY LITTLE PONY movie to a bored nursing staff thrills me to no end.

June 15, 2005 at 04:37 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

June 13, 2005


Monster, tentacles, limp corpse...Invasive species are all up in the news these days, be they Nutria Rats, Northern Snakeheads or agents. Now China is being invaded by Endeavor and CAA.

CAA has hired Beijing-producer, Peter Loehr, to be their Marco Polo: working with existing Asian clients and bringing Anglo productions and stars to China to shoot films. Loehr is the producer of movies like SHOWER and QUITTING.

Endeavor has joined forces with Shanghai Media Group to...take over the world? Launch a killer satellite that will control all animals? Bring peace, love and understanding to the barren places? No, they will not do these things. Instead, they will provide programming for SMG's 14 new pay-TV channels.

But William Morris got there first. These sharpies opened up a Shanghai office waaay back last year.

I just realized, that picture from THE HOST is pretty cool and it kind of fits this item as well. Monster, tentacles, limp corpse...

June 13, 2005 at 09:35 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


We'll keep these items short and sweet, like being kissed by a midget.

Elektra is no longer standing on Buddha's head.

Amitabh Bachchan will NOT hack down the tree blocking his office gates.

Steven Spielberg will not cast Japanese Prime Minister, Junichiro Koizumi, in new film!

Anthony Wong says Jay Chou is not an actor.

June 13, 2005 at 09:23 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Peter Jackson's WETA Digital is doing special effects for 'THE HOST'New Zealand is part of Asia, too. Peter Jackson's WETA Digital is getting on board to possibly do the effects and co-produce THE WOLF TOTEM with Beijing Forbidden City Film, according to Monkey Peaches. The movie is based on a book about wolves living on the Mongolian Prairie, and there are no humans, post-human Scientologists, or advanced Kabbalists in the cast. Apparently, Peter Jackson likes this idea and may come on board, not only to produce but also to raise special acting wolves in New Zealand.

Also, WETA is doing the effects for THE HOST, a Korean horror movie from Bong Jun-Ho, the director of MEMORIES OF MURDER and BARKING DOGS NEVER BITE. You can see the monster in this shot (click on it for a bigger version) and already all the agents are burning up their phone lines trying to get their A-list clients to play it in the inevitable US remake. My money's on Ewan McGregor who supposedly has the biggest tentacle of them all.

(Thanks to Twitch)

June 13, 2005 at 09:22 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 10, 2005


Kim's Video, NYC's famous video store, was raided on Wednesday, and five employees were arrested for trademark counterfeiting. Cops seized nine computer towers, a CD burner, a laptop computer, 471 compact disks and 53 videos. Most of their targeted items were music-related, and some reports claim that record industry execs were on hand to identify bootlegged items. The internet is abuzz.

Think what you want about bootlegging (oh no, Hall and Oates won't be able to make their car payments this year...), and think what you want about Kim's employees (*sob* that video clerk sneered at my rental selection) but this is the last of the great NYC video stores. They carry movies that you've only dreamed of seeing, their clerks actually care about movies and some of them have done great things (in the early 90's, Barry Long single-handedly converted half of New York's population to the joys of Hong Kong movies), and while they break the law on a pretty regular basis (breaking street date, carrying parallel imports and grey-market DVDs) these guys should be cut some slack. They are a brick and mortar store that'll only ever cut into the profit margins of the studios so much, and without them we'd all have to order our parallel imports on-line, and that's really geeky.

Hopefully, the notoriously scrappy Mr. Kim won't take this lying down, but now that Kim's is on the Fed's radar, this might be the beginning of the end.

As for me, I love Kim's. They do more for the New York movie scene than all the Blockbusters and Hollywood Videos combined, and I'll be heading down there to buy something today. I'd encourage you to do the same.

June 10, 2005 at 11:49 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack


Tomiko Konishi's Hiroshima cartoonNot a movie, but let's be broad-minded.

Tomiko Konishi was 8 when the atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima. She's drawn a cartoon of her experiences and they are graphic and moving.

(Thanks to Comics Reporter for the link)

June 10, 2005 at 09:50 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


What's the big craze in entertainment? Korean television dramas. Starting back in 1997 when "Wish Upon a Star" was broadcast in Hong Kong and reached audiences in China, to April 2005 when 2500 Japanese fans traveled to Korea to appear in a concert scene being shot for "April Snow" nothing makes middle-class, middle-aged Asian folks go nuts like Korean TV.

When popular pretty guy Bae Yong-Joon gave a press conference in March about 350 press people showed up and many wanted to know his views on the Tokto Island controversy (a dispute of ownership between Korea and Japan).

Japanese TV channels compete fiercely for the latest Korean TV dramas, and some people have estimated that the amount of revenue Korea reaps annually from TV drama licensing, Korean TV drama tourism, and selling products tied into TV dramas (or even products that merely appeared in a TV drama) approaches US$1 billion. Even Lee Myung-Se's latest movie, THE DUELIST (he's the director of the astounding NOWHERE TO HIDE) is based on a TV drama, "Damo".

YesAsia has an English-language Korean drama section with guides to all the different networks and all the different ways the stars can cry.

June 10, 2005 at 09:46 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 09, 2005


Tsui Hark's SEVEN SWORDS will be released in a 150 minute version

Tsui Hark's SEVEN SWORDS will be released in a 150 minute version, but it'll come out on DVD as a four-hour film.

Four. Hours.

I don't know whether to be happy or appalled.

There's also stills of all the characters in their grubby tatters here and here.

(Thanks to Monkey Peaches)

June 9, 2005 at 10:19 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Luigi Santiago was shot and killed by a gunman in a bar/cafe in Makati City, Metro Manila on Wednesday morning. Five others were injured before the gunman fled.

Santiago was the director of the popular television show, Nginig, which is a documentary-style show about the paranormal. He was raised in the US and attended NYU before directing Nginig, and he yearned to direct feature films. His first film, a feature version of NGINIG, was just completed.

This is not part of the wave of journalist murders in the Philippines that has seen 66 murders since democracy arrived in 1986 (and there hasn't been a single conviction in any of these cases). There were ten in 2004, and five so far this year.

Jose Torres Jr., who works at the same network as Luigi Santiago (ABS-CBN) writes that some journalists now pack heat.

(Thanks to Kung Fu Cult Cinema)

June 9, 2005 at 10:15 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 07, 2005


Kiyoshi Kurosawa's PULSE is the best J-horror movie out there, but it has been unavailable since it was released way back in 2001. There's a lousy Region 3 DVD (full frame) and a crummy VCD, but otherwise it's been sitting on shelves (after being briefly screened at Lincoln Center way back when) gathering dust. Whose shelves? Well, is it any surprise it's been sitting on Miramax's shelves for all this time?

Magnolia Pictures just announced that they've picked it up and will be releasing it theatrically this August. I'm glad to see ONG BAK didn't break the bank over there, especially if movies as creepy and great as PULSE are what they want to unleash on an unsuspecting public.

June 7, 2005 at 01:35 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack


Remember how much Gamera used to suck?Soon, the shelled one shall suck that badly again. Yes, prepare yourself for GAMERA: LITTLE BRAVES. Gamera, Daiei's flying, fire-breathing, giant turtle started out with a fine movie, then he was quickly made kid safe with the tag-line, "Friend to all children"  and he became a joke, something for people who didn't like giant monster movies to point to as a sign that things had Gone Too Far.

Then, in 1995, director Shusuke Kaneko resurrected the GAMERA franchise with three of the greatest giant monster movies ever made:


In 2002, Daiei was sold to the gargantuan Kadokawa Publishing company and their film arm is not only producing the new Takashi Miike movie, SPOOK WARFARE, but they've demonstrated that they have no clue as to what made the Gamera flicks exciting in the 90's and have returned the big ol' mean turtle to being the chaperone at a kiddie flick. The plot: a kid raises a baby Gamera.

(Thanks to City on Fire)

June 7, 2005 at 01:31 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


FAREWELL MY CONCUBINE: The MusicalFAREWELL MY CONCUBINE: The Musical has just announced it will tour Japan starting in September. Gaze on this image and think of what you're missing, Broadway.

Also, don't forget SUZ IMPRESSION, the WORLD OF SUZIE WONG musical that's making its way from Hong Kong to Shanghai, then to North America. Holy co-opting cultures! A Hollywood movie about Hong Kong, turned into a Hong Kong musical, and then shipped back to the US? The show does sport one song, "Happy Every Day", by the late great Hong Kong composer, James Wong.

(Thanks to Hong Kong Entertainment News in Review)

June 7, 2005 at 01:01 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack


Despite its "marvellous sound effects" and "the grandeur of its scenery", REVENGE OF THE SITH has refused to do big business in Mainland China, the official Chinese news agency, Xinhua, cheerfully reports. There was a breathless article a few weeks ago from Xinhua about how tied into China ROTS was, but they've sobered up after seeing how badly the film has done (about US$3 million in its first week, as opposed to KUNG FU HUSTLE which made around US$7 million in its first four days) and decided that there's just too many cultural differences for Hollywood movies to do that well in China.

The problem? Hollywood movies aren't smart enough for the discerning Chinese audience.

"Moreover, the Star Wars series is, in one sense, based on fairy-tale-like legends. In China, grown-ups prefer "real" stories," they write. Meow! Is it getting catty in here?

It is one of those imponderables, however, that a market with over a billion people counts as its biggest blockbuster of all time TITANIC, with a box office gross of about US$38 million. But obviously, Hollywood needs to mature a little if it's ever going to exploit that market the way it wants to.

June 7, 2005 at 12:49 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack


In a mystery that's got everyone baffled (even the normally reliable "authorities") 24,000 pieces of sharp metal have been found stuck in roadside guardrails all over Japan.

The Asahi newspaper says: "Why are such objects, so many of them, all over the country? If they had been intentionally installed, it's a serious crime."

But what is the crime? No one can figure it out. Are devious teens hoping people will stumble into these knife-like objects and be lightly scratched? Are they actually small, sharp metal aliens who have invaded but don't know what to do next? The Land and Transport Ministry has vowed to get to the bottom of this, but chances are we'll really never know.

June 7, 2005 at 12:35 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

June 06, 2005


Venice is known for its gondoliers, its merchants and now for hosting the world premiere of Tsui Hark's SEVEN SWORDS. So sayeth Fortissimo.

The fest pops up in September, so there's still plenty of time for the film to miss the festival.

Now let's all hope the movie's good.

(Thanks to Raymond P. for this tidbit)

June 6, 2005 at 06:13 PM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Sideshow Collectibles' Elektra statueNope, he's now a "detailed base [which] includes the Elektra logo". Pon Yi, a reader over at Monkey Peaches is annoyed that Marvel is allowing the folks at Sideshow Collectibles to sell this geeky collectible statue of box office poison ninja, Elektra, that shows her standing on top of Buddha.

"How would you feel if you were Christian and I were to create a Jesus statue figure and step on his head like that?" he argues.

Well, assuming they were Christian, that would probably drive them bananas.

"Better yet, what if I were to create a statue of your parent of loved one showing someone stepping on their head like that?"

Sorry, Pon Yi, but if they thought they could make money off it they would feel something like this: "Can we rush it into production immediately?"

Or, what if they made a collectible figure of Jesus and showed him standing on the head of Buddha? But standing on top of his head was a ninja? And inside the ninja was a little robot monkey? And inside the little monkey's heart was a love for the Buddha? Now who's the winner?

June 6, 2005 at 10:42 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Ram Gopal Varma is India's best director (in my humble opinion). And he makes a lot of movies. And when he's not making movies, he's producing movies, a bit like an Indian Tsui Hark. And the RGV-produced films are like the TH-produced vehicles: sometimes they hit and sometimes they miss. But the latests flick he's got his fingerprints on is the gangster film D, a spiritual prequel to his gangster epic COMPANY, and by all accounts it's a hit.

It doesn't hurt that the flick comes with controversy. COMPANY was supposedly a fictionalized account of the friendship and rupture between bigtime crooks Dawood Ibrahim and Chhota Rajan, although RGV denies this (a little too hard, actually).

Now, with D coming out, folks are pointing out that Dawood Ibrahim's gang is called D-Company, and claiming similarities. So much so, that Chhota Rajan called someone associated with the movie and told them he didn't want a flick made about his rival. Some fancy fast talking calmed him down and the savvy RGV sez: "I hope at least 10 more tickets would be sold after this so-called controversy." No fool, he.

It just came out in India, so find the nearest theater that shows Bollywood movies in your town (trust me: there's at least one out there, you just have to dig) and get thyself to D.

But first, a review.

June 6, 2005 at 10:37 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Yuriko makes musical instruments  Yuriko makes musical instruments.

  She plays her hair like a violin.

  She is cooler than all of us combined.

  (Courtesy of Nobodaddy's MoBlog)

June 6, 2005 at 10:32 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Hard-working Blake over at the Mobius Home Video Forum has re-typed and posted all the text from the ELECTION production booklet that was being given out at Cannes.

This is what the internet is all about: good people, working hard, so others can benefit.

Read it here.

June 6, 2005 at 10:32 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Wacky Jackie attacked a variety of consumer products today, including a shoe, a tie, and a watch.

That'll teach 'em.

June 6, 2005 at 10:25 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

June 02, 2005


Stephen Chow and Ng Man-tat reunite in KUNG FU CHAMPION Stephen Chow is directing his long-time co-star, Ng Man-tat, in the television series "Kung Fu Champion."

The show is a spin-off of KUNG FU HUSTLE and it stars Ng Man-tat, Huang Shengyi (the ice cream girl, who may get to talk this time) and breakthrough landlandy, Yuen Qiu.

Chow will direct, but won't act.

(Thanks to Hong Kong Entertainment News In Review)

June 2, 2005 at 01:00 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


Smoking is bad for you, but it does look cool. Especially in movies. But in India, the government has set August 1 as the date when smoking in movies and on TV must stop. Not only that, but old movies will need a health warning attached to them whenever a character appears onscreen puffing on a cancer stick.

You know, beyond the knee jerk reaction, is this really so bad? So people can't smoke in movies...so what?

In Japan, on the other hand, the end is nigh. A precinct has banned sales of GRAND THEFT AUTO. They say it causes violence. What?!? Are they out of their minds? Haven't they read "Everything Bad is Good For You"? Don't they know that GTA will make their kids smarter? Quick, America! Now's our chance for our kids to finally be smarter than Japanese kids. To your Playstations, children! You are our future.

(Thanks to Kung Fu Cult Cinema)

June 2, 2005 at 12:20 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack


In a triumph of commerce over art, it looks like RUSH HOUR 3 may not be coming soon to a theater near you. Writers are, by anyone's standards, the worst things to happen to movies. They destroy the artistic visions of studio heads, leaving the sensitive executives sobbing and broken over their shattered dreams, while the callow writers skip off to the spa, laughing at the destruction left in their wake.

And now, a writer named Jeff Nathanson has disappointed us all. Chris Tucker was being paid $5 billion to make RUSH HOUR 3. Jackie Chan managed to choke down his pride and signed on to RUSH HOUR 3. Brett Ratner stopped dry humping women on the dance floor and signed onto RUSH HOUR 3. All Jeff Nathanson had to do was write a treatment for $250,000 and everything was a green light. The stars would be free to pursue their pure artistic vision of a third RUSH HOUR movie after reading the treatment and waiving all script approval. But then, Chris Tucker didn't sign. So the whole thing is off.

Why wouldn't Chris "Day-Lewis" Tucker sign? Who knows? But it may have something to do with his lack of confidence in the script/treatment. But come on, Chris, this is the guy who wrote SPEED 2: CRUISE CONTROL. Can he do anything wrong?

I'm confused about who to blame here, but all I know is that someone has to tell the kids there might not be a RUSH HOUR 3 in 2006.

June 2, 2005 at 12:19 AM in News | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack