August 01, 2006



They're making all kinds of money over there in Asia this past weekend. In Korea, THE HOST opened up and broke pretty much every box office record in the industry. Budgeted at only US$11 million it earned US$17.2 million on its opening weekend (take that, SUPERMAN RETURNS!), and looks like it's going to set the standards for massive Korea flicks from here on out (it beat the one-day ticket sales record previously held by TAE GUK GI, surpassing it by 200,000 tickets).

(And if you're in New Zealand, don't miss THE HOST which is currently touring the country as part of the New Zealand Film Festivals. Its remaining screening times are:
Wellington / Thursday  03-Aug-06 / 10:45 PM / EMBASSY
Dunedin Sunday 13-Aug-06 / 8:30 PM  / REGENT
Christchurch / Friday 18-Aug-06 / 3:30 PM / RIALTO            
Christchurch/  Sunday 20-Aug-06 / 8:15 PM / RIALTO)

DRAGON TIGER GATE earned mostly negative reviews in Hong Kong (action = great; everything else = not so great; read free verse poetry reviews of DTG) but it earned HK$5.4 million (about US$692,308) and picked up about US$3 million across Asia. And it's doing well enough that Donnie Yen is talking about a DTG sequel for next summer.

In Japan, the big battling movies were TALES OF EARTHSEA from Studio Ghibli and BRAVE STORY from Fuji TV, both animated fantasy pics aimed at kids. EARTHSEA opened to US$7.2 million, which made it number one for the weekend (beating out PIRATES OF THE CARRIBEAN 2's second weekend in theaters where it made only US$6 million). I don't have figures for BRAVE STORY yet, but according to Mark Schilling it's the better of the two movies. He says that EARTHSEA is "...
like a tribute band playing a new number 'in the style' of some departed great -- and delivering everything but the greatness." while BRAVE STORY is "...fast-paced, visually arresting, narratively twisty entertainment...".

Poor Goro. He's making a lot of money, but is it really all about the money?

August 1, 2006 at 09:59 AM in News | Permalink


Tales from Earthsea isn't actually making a lot of money for a Ghibli movie, the opening iso nly about 70% of the opening of Howl's Moving Castle, and it's being marked as a critical diappointment in Japan.

Posted by: Kevin Ma | Aug 1, 2006 6:19:12 PM

Hi, Grady. I have written the opening weekend b.o. and final estimate in my past article, and here is the "round 2" comparison between the two:


Posted by: Michi | Aug 1, 2006 7:48:36 PM

It's good to know that the local films are doing better than the Hollywood films. Perhaps this will force Hollywood to take more risk and be more creative in order to be more competitive. On the other hand, they will probably scream unfair quota restrictions or something, or just outspend the locals and try to bankrupt them, along with other dirty tricks.

Posted by: jackychan | Aug 7, 2006 10:07:25 AM

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