HKMDB Daily News

June 16, 2010

June 16, 2010

NYTimes: In China, an Attempt at a Hollywood-Style Movie (Empires of the Deep)

It is an ambitious departure from the formulaic historical or Communist propaganda movies usually churned out by the Chinese film industry. [sigh, that old canard again]

Variety: Crossing Hennessy

Riffing on American indie “Crossing Delancy,” Hong Kong helmer-scribe Ivy Ho’s lackluster romantic comedy “Crossing Hennessy” centers on a fortysomething slacker, still hung up on the childhood sweetheart who dumped him, and a young woman whose family feels she’s involved with an unsuitable man. Ostensibly a vehicle for the two stars, pic forces their relationship to take a backseat to multiple subplots that detour the narrative through sitcom, melodrama and fantasy.

THR: ‘Killers’ to close Shanghai fest Sunday

DMG, a Chinese-American media company, and Lionsgate have managed to get “Killers” slotted as the Shanghai International Film Festival’s closing-night film on Sunday.

“They love American movies,” DMG CEO Dan Mintz said. “However, there’s also a signal coming from China: You need to know how to do business with us and how to handle us. The signal is that you can’t just show up once in a while and expect things to go right. You have to know how to work the market and be committed. People know when you are committed or not.”

THR: China screen reaches out for more foreign actors [for boxing, maybe?]

THR: Christie opens Shenzhen production facility

Digital cinema projector maker ramps up output

Triple Tap stills - Louis Koo, Chapman To

!!!!

Louis Koo, Charlene Choi (21cn)

Miriam Yeung and Shawn Yue

Miriam and Shawn were in Guangzhou to promote the Mainland Cantonese version of Pang Ho-Cheung’s Love in a Puff. Shawn discounted recent rumors of a relationship with Sammi Cheng. Since they live in the same building, reporters spotted the pair walking their dogs together. Coincidentally, Love in a Puff features a spring-fall relationship. Director Pang declared Love in a Puff the mildest Cat.III film ever. Some of the changes include: the 10 minute opening scene has been shortened to 3-4 minutes, a cigarette joke referring to the male organ, Vincent Kok’s jokes about the paparrazzi, and a key point where Miriam quizzes Shawn about text messages and the implication of getting an abortion(?) is blurred. (Xinhua)(21cn)

Tsui Siu-Ming promised that the 3D Modern Beijing Opera starring Jackie Chan will be action packed. Chan will play national hero Yang Zirong. It is based on the story of Taking Tiger Mountain by Strategy which takes place during the Sino-Japanese War. Tsui Siu-Ming is enlisting the help of the PLA backed August 1 Film Studio because of its enormous resources and expertise. (21cn)

(Sina)

Danwei: Liu Ye fights a drunken foreigner over a taxi

Global Voices: Film director beats up foreigner at swimming pool

Director Ning Hao meets a paper tiger

Nicholas Tse’s son, Lucas, receives HK$8m acting offer

Kelly Chan

Kelly Chan unveils the new Airbus 330 for Hong Kong airline (Sina)(Xinhua)

Gigi Leung

Mandy Lieu

Gigi Leung was asked at a design exhibition whether ex-boyfriend Ekin Cheng called to comfort her after her recent break up with her French boyfriend. Gigi told reporters that there was no need. (Sina)

Sammi Cheng - Taiwan

Sammi appeared with Fay, lead singer of FIR, to promote sales of handmade soaps to benefit World Vision. (Xinhua)

Gillian Chung appearing at an event for her film Ex.

Is she rooting for England in the World Cup? (Xinhua)

China’s 3D World Cup dreams put on hold

Crossing Hennessy (Variety review)

Filed under: Reprints — Tags: — dleedlee @ 8:51 am

Crossing Hennessy
Yue man xuan ni shi

(Hong Kong) An Irresistible Films, Sil-Metropole Organization, Distribution Workshop, EDKO Film production. Produced by Cary Cheung, Yee Chung-man, Cheung Hong-tat. Executive producers, Bill Kong, Ryuhei Chiba, Hugh Simon, Song Dai. Directed, written by Ivy Ho.

With: Jacky Cheung, Tang Wei, Paw Hee-ching, Danny Lee, Andy On, Maggie Cheung Ho-yee, Mimi Chu, Lam Wai, Kwok Fung, Gill Mohindepaul Singh, Lowell Lo.

By ALISSA SIMON
Riffing on American indie “Crossing Delancy,” Hong Kong helmer-scribe Ivy Ho’s lackluster romantic comedy “Crossing Hennessy” centers on a fortysomething slacker, still hung up on the childhood sweetheart who dumped him, and a young woman whose family feels she’s involved with an unsuitable man. Ostensibly a vehicle for the two stars, pic forces their relationship to take a backseat to multiple subplots that detour the narrative through sitcom, melodrama and fantasy. Asian theatrical release in April was weak to so-so; elsewhere, best prospects are in ancillary.

While Loy (singer-actor Jacky Cheung) and Oi-lin (”Lust, Caution’s” Tang Wei) sort out their love lives, Loy’s widowed dragon-lady mother (vet Paw Hee-ching) dominates the pic as an over-the-top shrew who, in between beauty treatments, verbally abuses her mild-mannered admirer (Danny Lee) and long-suffering sister (Mimi Chu). Time devoted to dream sequences in which Loy converses with his dead father (Lowell Lo) and sees a mysterious Indian man (Gill Mohindepaul Singh) might have been more profitably spent developing chemistry between the principals. Ho fails to visually exploit her story’s setting in Hong Kong’s Wan Chai district; workmanlike tech package is equally bland.

Camera (color), Poon Hang-seng; editor, Kong Chi-leung; music, Anthony Chue; production designer, Man Lim-chung. Reviewed at Seattle Film Festival (New Directors Showcase), June 11, 2010. (Also in Hong Kong Film Festival — opener.) Running time: 108 MIN.
Variety

March 25, 2010

March 22, 2010

Variety: Hong Kong festival kicks off

The 34th Hong Kong Film Festival kicked off Sunday with the twin bows of Ivy Ho’s comedy “Crossing Hennessy” and Clara Law’s “Like a Dream” at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center.

Screen Daily: Like A Dream

Clara Law’s beautifully absorbing fable is a lush and at times entrancing moody melodrama that is highlighted by the quite wonderful performance by the enchanting Yolanda Yuan who plays dual roles.

Screen Daily: Crossing Hennessy

Crossing Hennessy is an engagingly fresh and enjoyable dramatic comedy that makes great use of its Hong Kong locations as it delves into the romantic complications of modern urban life.

THR: Chinese presence fuels optimism in Hong Kong

Almost a fifth of this year’s exhibitors — more than 120 — hail from mainland China, as the growing strength and importance of that market continues to show itself.

Jackie Chan and Stanley Tong will produce a 30-part television series about Yuefei, one of China’s most heroic and controversial generals, now that they have secured long-sought Chinese government approval.

The series, “Yuefei,” is about the general of the Southern Song Dynasty in the 12th century A.D., who helped defend central China against invaders, but eventually was imprisoned and executed by the high court at age 39. Yuefei’s name was cleared posthumously and his story is told to Chinese children today to teach courage and tenacity.

Chow Yun-Fat - Let the Bullets Fly

(Sina)

CRI: Interest in ‘Bullets’ Runs High

CRI: Director Wang Quan’an’s New Project Not So New

CRI: Bazaar Releases ‘La La” Fashion !

Bazaar releases a special issue of its magazine to coincide with ‘Go Lala Go!’ that includes more golden rules of office survival.

Miriam Yeung and Shawn Yu hope Cat.3 rating won’t affect box office for Love in a Puff

(Sina)

Asian Film Awards Jury President Tony Leung Kai-Fai suffering from eye irritation.

Awards to be announced Monday. (Sina)

Tang Wei at HKIFF

Paw Hee-Ching, Ivy Ho, Tang Wei (Sina)

Stanley Huang and Karen Mok in Go Lala Go! (Du Lala’s Promotion)

Three “Jing girls” in Wong Jing’s Future X-Cops

Zhang Li

Tang Yifei

Natalie Meng Yao (HunanTV)

(Re)Inventing China’s “Seventeen Years” on Film at the 2009 New York Film Festival

Mainland Chinese works of art from this “Seventeen Years” period have been routinely dismissed as propaganda by the same Western scholars and critics who periodically “discover” and celebrate masterpieces of Chinese cinema from the preceding Republican era or the later post-Mao era.

Mao-era Chinese films are univocal, tedious, and thematically homogeneous.

This rarely questioned truism could only be asserted by the ill-informed, and its widespread acceptance reveals how common is the ignorance of this period of Chinese film history. The cinema of this period includes comedies, musicals, dramas, animation, war epics, historical sagas, traditional operas, children’s films, and spy thrillers…

Mao-era Chinese films are excessively ideological and oppressively obvious, bludgeoning the viewer with blatant political propaganda…

THR: Echoes of the Rainbow

Bottom Line: A nostalgic and unabashedly sentimental family picture.

THR: 14 Blades

Bottom Line: A traditional martial arts thriller beefed up by gimmicky weaponry.

THR: Crossing Hennessy

Bottom Line: A rom-com that is more comical than romantic.

THR: Like a Dream

Bottom Line: Little thematic and less narrative sense make for difficult viewing that often tests the patience.

THR: Amphetamine

Bottom Line: Aesthetic aspirations killed the camp.

Bottom Line: Evidence that the digital revolution isn’t necessarily a good thing.

Bottom Line: A teasingly original idea from a new filmmaker wrapped up in the familiar.

THR: Wong Jing tackles 3D comedy

‘King of Jesters’ to be produced by Mega-Vision

Wong also returns to familiar grounds with “Naked Soldiers”, the US$4 million three-quel to his sex and crime series “Naked Weapon” and “Naked Killer,” which raised to cult status in Europe with their main draw of T&A and guns. Next, Mega-Vision will also begin production of the 30 million yuan (US$4.4 million) action adventure “Aladdina,” starring Louis Koo and the Hong Kong pop group Twins.

THR: Filmko on a quest to make 3D ‘Quixote’

First Chinese stereoscopic 3D period drama, helmed by Chinese director Agan

…starring Karena Lam (”Claustrophobia”) and Liu Ye (”City of Life and Death”), the film was produced with the Chinese Academy of Sciences, utilizing the academy’s stereoscopic 3D camera, the first in China. The film also hired a group of 3D experts from Germany as consultants during the shoots.

The company is now developing its next 3D epic, “The Monkey King,” a 180 million yuan retelling of the Chinese mythical literature “Journey to the West” with a script written by “Ip Man” writer Edmond Wong. Filming is scheduled for October with a 2011 release date.

Fresh from his win at the Berlin International Film Festival for his romantic comedy “Au Revoir Taipei,” Chinese-American director Arvin Chen is at this week’s Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum to meet with potential investors for his new movie,“Nan Jing East Road.”

East Wind Rain poster


Half a century on, ‘Suzie Wong’ still a star in Hong Kong

Actress Nancy Kwan walks into Hong Kong’s Luk Kwok Hotel, the first time she has ever visited the backdrop to her classic 1960 film “The World of Suzie Wong”.

Jacky Cheung concert tour embroiled in fraud case

Stanley Ho’s daughter, Pansy Ho

Asian casino magnate Stanley Ho denied Thursday that he has ties to Chinese organized crime gangs.

Casino VIP rooms opened door to gangsters in Macau, report says

Vivian Hsu was surprised with a birthday cake on the set of Seediq Bale

Director Wei Te-Sheng, Vivian Hsu 

March 22, 2010

Crossing Hennessy (Hollywood Reporter review)

Filed under: Reprints — Tags: — dleedlee @ 7:00 pm

Crossing Hennessy
By Maggie Lee
Bottom Line: A rom-com that is more comical than romantic.

HONG KONG — Two people cajoled into a blind date by their relatives get off on a rotten start, but love is literally round the street corner in “Crossing Hennessy.” This trivial but chirpy sophomore feature directed by eminent Hong Kong screenwriter Ivy Ho is buoyed by a fleet of fabulous veteran supporting actors. So much so that the low key romantic leads Tang Wei and Jacky Cheung struggle to come to the fore, and never reach that transcendent moment of connection. Supposedly a rom-com, it feels like Sunday brunch with an extended family in a noisy dim sum restaurant rather than a candle-lit dinner in a bistro.

The film should do moderate business on its home turf, while aiming for festivals showcasing Asian popular cinema. Viewers in their mid-30 or above ought to agree with the jovial humor whereas a younger generation could lose patience with the slow-burning courtship.

Hennessy is not a river, nor a bridge, but the main road in Hong Kong’s Wanchai district. It’s where Loy (Cheung) helps his Draconian widowed mother Mrs. Chiang (Paw Hee Ching) run an electrical appliances shop. Further down the road, Oi Lin (Tang) works for her uncle’s toilet retail business. Both are somewhat attached, only Oi Lin’s volatile beefcake boyfriend Xu (Andy On) is in jail, while Loy casually beds his newly divorced ex (Maggie Cheung Ho Hee.)

Reluctantly brought together in a blind date arranged by meddlesome relatives, they keep up a charade to humor them. As they warm to each other, they realize that despite geographical proximity, taking one step closer to love requires a lifetime’s courage.

In place of chronological tricks and meaningful silences in her debut “Claustrophobia,” Ho uses a huge breakdown of scenes and torrential dialogue, most of which is cheekily good natured. The chatty lines comes off best in a subplot about the love triangle and personality clashes between Mrs. Chiang, her boyfriend Ching (Danny Lee) and her spinster sister (Mimi Chu).

Some flights of fantasy jar with the endeavor at authenticity in dialogue and place, such as mind-boggling appearances of an Indian in various guises, and Loy’s conversations with his late father (Lowell Lo), done in a corny ripple screen effect.

Tang acquits herself well as the girl next door, but has no occasion to call upon the incredible range she displayed in “Lust, Caution.” Cheung looks too old for the part and acts too young.

One senses that “Crossing” aspires to be a swan song to a colorful area in transition under the government’s soulless and philistine “Urban Renewal” project. However, this is not adequately expressed by having the two leads talk and walk up and down the same few streets. Despite an extraordinary amount of shots taken, no strong sense of place or direction emerges. Ho is yet to gain command of distinctive visual language and seamless continuity, as cinematography is often flat and compositions bland, while certain scenes lack sequential logic.

Venue: Hong Kong International Film Festival — opening film
Irresistible Films and Sil-Metropole Organization presents an Irresistible Gamma Ltd production
Sales: Distribution Workshop
Cast: Jacky Cheung, Tang Wei, Paw Hee Ching, Andy On, Maggie Ho Yee Cheung, Danny Lee, Mimi Chu
Director-screenwriter: Ivy Ho
Producers: Cary Cheng, Yee Chung Man, Cheung Hong Tat
Executive producers: Bill Kong, Ryuhei Chiba, Hugh Simon, Song Dai
Director of Photography: Poon Hang Sang
Production designer: Man Nim Chung
Music: Anthony Chue
Editor: Kong Chi Leung
No rating, 105 minutes

THR

Crossing Hennessy (Screen Daily review)

Filed under: Reprints — Tags: — dleedlee @ 10:50 am

Crossing Hennessy
By Mark Adams

Dir/scr: Ivy Ho. Hong Kong. 2010. 105 mins

Crossing Hennessy is an engagingly fresh and enjoyable dramatic comedy that makes great use of its Hong Kong locations as it delves into the romantic complications of modern urban life. It is perhaps too old-fashioned and straightforward to break the box office (or travel extensively internationally) but it is clear why it was the natural choice to open the Hong Kong International Film Festival.

The fact that not an awful lot massively dramatic happens - beyond a few arguments, an illness and a belated fistfight - does not hamper the story of a quite ordinary ‘will-they-won’t-they’ couple as they go about their modest life. No Tried gun-battles or kung fu clashes here, just a simple Hong Kong tale of love and loss.

When 41 year-old Loy (Jacky Cheung) is set up on a date by his flamboyant shopkeeper mother (Paw Hee-ching, who plays her role with increasingly enjoyable shrillness) it is no great success. Quietly beautiful Oi Lin (played elegantly by Tang Wei, who first gained attention in Ang Lee’s Lust, Caution) has no real interest in him, and still hopes her jailed boyfriend will turn good.

Both Loy and Oi Lin work in shops on Hennessy Road (she is rather unfortunately dubbed the ‘Toilet Princess’ because she works in her uncle’s plumbing goods store) and over the coming weeks and months meet through a series if chance encounters and grudgingly come to realise that against the odds they make each other happy and content.

And that is pretty much that. Writer-director Ivy Ho weaves a gently entertaining story of simple folk falling gradually in love. She offers up a few tasty side dishes along the way - especially the comedy double act of Paw Hee-ching and veteran performer Mimi Chu (who play’s sister) as a bickering pair both trying to keep Loy in order - but apart from that sensibly allows the central relationship to develop at an unhurried and oddly realistic pace.

Jacky Cheung has a certain good-natured charm, and plays his ageing slacker role ably, though the real star of the show is Tang Wei who offers a natural charisma that is both unfussy and quite captivating.

A series of random ‘imaginary’ scenes involving local Indian actor Gill Mohindepaul Singh might well amuse local audiences, but will leave everyone else scratching their heads and wonder what on earth is going on. Unlikely to play much outside its home territory, there is still a lot to enjoy in Crossing Hennessy and its romantic slice of Hong Kong life.

Production company: Irresistible Films
International sales: Distribution Workshop. www.distributionworkshop.com
Producers: Cary Cheung, Tang Wei, Cheung Hong-fat
Cinematographer: Poon Hang-sang
Editor: Kong Chi-leung
Music: Anthony Chue
Main cast: Jacky Cheung, Tang Wei, Paw Hee-ching, Danny Lee, Andy On, Mimi Chu
Screen Daily

March 20, 2010

March 20, 2010

Filed under: News — Tags: , — dleedlee @ 2:29 pm

HK Magazine: Crossing Hennessy (review)

It is enormously refreshing to see a Hong Kong film that has nothing to do with triad politics or wired kung fu acrobatics. Set over a few streets in Wan Chai, “Crossing Hennessy” is a straightforward dramedy that acknowledges the pathos of modern urban living while pointing out some of the simple truths in life…

Interview: Ivy Ho

Someone misquoted me. I did not say, “Within ten years Hong Kong films might become obsolete.” I just said Cantonese films might become obsolete.

HK Magazine: Echoes of the Rainbow (review)

It all started as a selfish little project—director Alex Law wanted to make a film dedicated to his older brother, and wrote the screenplay based on his childhood in 1960s Hong Kong. It is a small, cozy film that feels like a personal tribute…

HK Magazine: Second Act

While co-productions with the mainland continue to keep Hong Kong’s film industry in business, some local moviemakers are taking a more intimate approach to shooting in our city…

Eight Local Films Premiere at HKIFF

Break Up Club
A sad and sweet teen romance. Directed by Barbara Wong. Starring Fiona Sit, Jaycee Chan, Patrick Tang, Hiro Hayama and Bonnie Xian.
La Comédie Humaine
A professional hitman and a screenwriter become friends. Directed by Chan Hing-kai and Janet Chun. Starring Chapman To, Wong Cho-lam and Fiona Sit.

Gallants

Actions and laughs abound in this homage to action films of yesteryear. Directed by Derek Kwok and Clement Cheng. Starring Leung Siu-lung, Chen Kwun-tai and Teddy Robin.

Girl$

A group of teenage escorts encounter a pervy cop and a john with AIDS while a killer is on the loose. Directed by Kenneth Bi. Starring Bonnie Xian, Michelle Wai, Minyi Wang, Derek Tsang and Deep Ng.

How to Make an Indie Hong Kong Flick (link above, scroll down)

Want to make an indie film but short of funds and talent? Let our no-sweat step-by-step guide to independent filmmaking set you on your way to stardom. Hong Kong International Film Festival 2011, here we come!

Variety: Filmart kicks off in Hong Kong

Asian confab buzzes with local momentum, looks ahead to 3D

  • A majority of the top 10 Chinese-language box office hits in China were Hong Kong movies or co-productions. The number of movies that started lensing in 2009 was 30% higher than the previous year at 70, and the council expects that number to increase in 2010.
  • Hong Kong’s expertise is in action movies, and local helmer Wilson Yip says martial arts films will continue to play a key role in the city’s movie industry, even as local production companies increase cross-border cooperation.
  • Hong Kong helmer Peter Chan, who last year linked up with Beijing distributor PolyBona and Chinese helmer Huang Jiangxin to form the shingle Cinema Popular, has been skeptical about the belief that the market will keep rising forever.
  • “Last year was too good to be true. This year everything will go back to being real,” he says.It is fortunate that Hong Kong has a huge market on the Chinese mainland, where we are finding new and expanded opportunities,” says thesp Tony Leung [Chiu-Wai], who is acting as Hong Kong Entertainment Ambassador.
  • “On the downside, dependence on the mainland means we lack market diversity and that’s not healthy,” he says. “And we also still face constraints on film productions, since it’s not easy for some movie themes to win approval from the authorities.”

Screen Daily: Hong Kong turns up the volume

On the eve of the 34th Hong Kong International Film Festival and Filmart, Liz Shackleton looks at whether the current surge in Hong Kong cinema really amounts to a revival.

  • China has become a crucial market for Hong Kong productions, but its censorship rules restrict Hong Kong’s traditional ghost, gambling and gangster movies, and mainland audiences have different tastes to cinema-goers in Hong Kong. That has led to a downturn in small to medium-budget Cantonese-language fare, and an upsurge in mainland-focused co-productions.
  • But the situation started to change last year with the success of Mandarin Films’ comedy All’s Well, Ends Well, and the return of Shaw Brothers and broadcaster TVB to production with local titles such as crime drama Turning Point and comedy 72 Tenants Of Prosperity that managed to recoup just in Hong Kong.
  • Also encouraging is the fact that even mainland audiences have been warming up to films with a strong Hong Kong accent. Last year, Wong Jing’s old school comedy, On His Majesty’s Secret Service, grossed $14.9m (RMB102m) in China.

March 12, 2010

March 12, 2010

Great Star theater preparing to rise again

SFIAAFF 2010 Review: Talentime

TVB General Manager and Show Host Arrested For Graft

Stephen Chan, 51, allegedly controlled the shell company which accepted production contracts from TVB and then outsourced the work to other production houses, according to a source.

This allegedly allowed the shell company to accumulate as much as HK$10 million over the years. Some of TVB’s top artists such as Bernice Liu, Moses Chan Ho, Raymond Lam Fung, Bosco Wong Chung-Chak, Tavia Yeung Yi and Charmaine Sheh Sze-man had been forced to perform in major shows and other functions, and even ribbon-cutting ceremonies, for free or at very low pay. [Chan was the host of Be My Guest that interviewed the teary Gillian Chung last year, you may recall.]

HK Magazine: There Goes the Neighborhood

The filmmakers of “Echoes of the Rainbow,” which is set in 1960s Hong Kong, found themselves in trouble when they initially couldn’t find the right location for their film. Alex Law Kai-yui and Mabel Cheung originally went to Sham Shui Po to scout for locations, only to find that most of the streets in even this old neighborhood have changed quite a bit, with no street having all the tong laus intact. In the end, they found Wing Lee Street. “If this street is torn down too, Hong Kong will lose yet another street full of characters,” producer Mabel Cheung says after returning to Hong Kong from Berlin. “This is the only street retaining the 1960’s Hong Kong.”

Cheung also mentions that, before finding Wing Lee Street, they considered shooting the film in Malaysia or Guangzhou instead. “It’d be preposterous to shoot a film about Hong Kong in another city,” Cheung says.

HK Magazine: Aarif Lee Interview

CRI: Du Lala’s Bikini Scene

Lead actress Xu Jinlei dons a bikini for a scene in her directorial production “Go Lala Go!”, formerly called “Du Lala’s Promotion”, an urban romance film co-starring Stanley Huang, Karen Mok, Li Ai and Pace Wu.

South Korean actress Kim Hee-sun will star in Warring States (tentative title), a war epic set in China more than 2,000 years ago. It will also have mainland actor Sun Honglei.

Just Another Pandora’s Box (Once Upon a Chinese Classic)

The movie boasts 58 stars and premieres in Beijing Mar.15 with a staggered roll out across the Mainland, 16th in Shanghai. 17th in Chengdu, 18th in Guangzhou, 19th in Shenyang. (Sina)

Vivian Hsu - The Musician

Vivian Hsu has created her own season this spring with four movies: Hot Summer Love, Fire of Conscience, The Musician (April release),  Seediq Bale (in production) and a new album. (Sina)

Crossing Hennessy - Jacky Cheung has a one-night stand with Maggie Cheung Ho-Yi

(Sina)

Lu Chuan

Lu Chuan’s Feast at Hongmen is being delayed due to need for additional financing. In addition, potential cast members Ge You and Feng Xiaogang are still working on Jiang Wen’s Let the Bullets Fly. To fill his time, Lu Chuan will shoot a short film about the “hidden rules” of the business based on Tang Wei’s banning incident. (Sina)

Takeshi Kaneshiro rumoured to be trying for baby in Japan

Widely speculated for hiding his marriage - a la a certain Andy Lau - after a blog claimed that the Asian superstar secretly got hitched, another blogger has quoted reliable sources saying Takeshi, who is currently based in Japan, is trying for a baby.

A celebrity blogger exposed the actor for marrying a Japanese woman last December, a piece of news which was denied by his management. On Tuesday, another blogger alleged that the Japanese-Taiwanese actor and his wife are currently located in Japan as part of their plans to have kids.

Ti Lung

Li Yapeng (Faye Wong’s husband)

Ti Lung, Li Yapeng and other cast members help launch an upcoming CCTV series. (Xinhua)

Donnie Yen will soon be enshrined in wax at the Hong Kong Madame Tussauds

(Sina)

(Sina)

Taipei Times: Pop Stop

Jay Chou’s Batmobile, Ethan Ruan’s ‘long-haired hottie’ and more

The next time you think you have a tough commute: (China Hush)

April 24, 2009

April 24, 2009

Tang Wei

With Paw Hee-ChingPaw Hee-Ching, Danny Lee
Tang Wei congratulates Paw Hee-Ching, costar in Crossing Hennessy, on award

Tang Wei delighted to be working again after ban

Spencer Lam (Photo: ent.sina.com)
ESNW: Whom Did Spencer Lam Play For?
1960 Rome Olympian played soccer under what banner?
Football commentator `Uncle Spencer’ dies

Patience rewarded
Veteran actor Nick Cheung Ka-fai finally gets his due after putting some 20 years into the Hongkong film industry

‘Girlfriend’ Prevails With Small, Tactful Jokes
Shin Tae-ra’s buoyant spy romance “My Girlfriend Isn’t an Agent’’ is a promising asset to the South Korean romantic comedy genre.

Taipei Times: All picture, no story
‘Our Island, Our Dreams’ uses a postcard-worthy location to tell a run-of-the-mill romantic tale

Evokative picks up South Korea’s Daytime Drinking for Canada


I Corrupt All Cops Shanghai premiere, opens April 30th

Feng Sheng/Rumor/Sound of the Wind
Poster for Rumor/Sound of the Wind

Film features Zhou Xun, Li Bingbing, Huang Xiaoming, Alec So, Zhang Hanyu,Wang Zhiwen
Liu Weiwei
First stills, trailer released

NYT: Jackie Chan Strikes a Chinese Nerve

Taipei Times: Pop Stop

Suzanne Hsiao absent thrice for community service and risks retraction of probation order

Jill Vidal - Prison break as Wei Si admits heroin charge

Police Fail to Pursue Sex Scandal List - Jang Ja-Yeon case
9 Booked Over Actress Jang Ja-yeon Suicide

Danwei: More free Chinese music from Neocha

April 17, 2009

April 17, 2009

City of Life and Death - Beijing Premiere
Qin Lan (Photos: ent.sina.com)Gao Yuanyuan

Jiang Yiyan
City of Life and Death Beijing Premiere
Nanjing! City of Life or Death?


Detective Dee Poster


Carina Lau pips Brigitte Lin and Cheri Chung!
Carina Lau to play Empress Wu in Tsui Harks’s Detective Dee

Her manager denies pregnancy rumors
Carina Lau to Play Emperor Wu Zetian


Tang Wei, Andy On
Crossing Hennessy - Tang Wei and Andy On shooting scene in street

East Wind, Rain - Wang Baoqiang Is a ‘Xiao Kai’ in Shanghai

Taipei Times: Invitation Only review
‘Invitation Only’ is Taiwan’s answer to torture porn films like ‘Saw’ and ‘Hostel’

Variety: Sarkissian on ‘Mad’ mission
Producer to remake two Johnnie To films, The Mad Detective and The Mission

Movie preview: “Inglorious Basterds”

Bai Ling goes where the action is
Bai Ling, Crazy Cool
Bai Ling Wants To Know If You’re Naked
Bai Ling Explains “Nipple” Book

Alex Fong Lik-Sun, Gillian Chung
Almost forgotten Fantastic Water Babes being reviewed by Mainland censors. Albert Yeung hopes for a release this year and new film work for Gillian.

‘Lurking’ with Sun Honglei - TV series

Shing Fui-On amd Maria Cordero
Shing Fui-On has recovered from throat(?) cancer but lost his sense of taste

Diagnosed in 2004, he was successfully treated with chemotherapy. Now he has to use his imagination when he eats.

Taipei Times Pop Stop

Elaine Ng plans for daughter to meet “father”
Former Miss Asia Elaine Ng was said to have illegitimately bore Jackie Chan a baby girl nine years ago though neither party confirmed this allegation by the Hong Kong media. To compensate her daughter, who has grown up without a father, Ng sought the help of her friends to sound Chan out for a meeting with the nine-year-old Etta Ng.

Since the mother and daughter moved to Shanghai in 2001, they have been residing in a villa and Etta has also been attending a prestigious school where annual fees are close to S$20,000.

An insider said, “Elaine has arranged for Etta to study in an international school to prevent her daughter’s status from affecting her relationships with friends. However, due to Jackie Chan’s worldwide fame, even foreign students know who Etta’s father is and have purposely used the name “Jackie” to crack jokes with her, annoying the little girl and hurting her mother.”

Though the girl has avoided asking about her father in fear of displeasuring her mother, a pediologist has certified that Etta is now capable of managing a meeting her father. Ng has thus secretly sought help from her old friends, Sandra Ng and Margie Tseng, to relay a message to Chan, hoping that he would meet with his “daughter”.

Edison Chen receives threat mail again! (via Apple Daily)
Hong Kong’s Apple Daily received an anonymous package containing a lighter, some silvery powder and a Sniper movie poster that was torn out of Apple Daily’s own pages dated April 9. With Chen’s portrait on the poster, Apple Daily speculated that the mail is targeted at him once again.

Last month, Hong Kong media received two packages, each containing a bullet, with notes that advised Chen to refrain from attending any promotional events from April 4 onwards, regardless of countries, to avoid bringing danger to his life. Despite the death threats, Chen still “risked his life” to promote the movie Sniper in Singapore early this month. He was also in Shanghai and Beijing thereafter for business meetings, disregarding the bullet threats.

Apple Daily reported the new threat to police on Tuesday afternoon at 2.40p.m. The bomb disposal team and HAZMAT (hazardous materials) tender truck were deployed for at Apple Daily’s office.

At press time, the case had been handed over to the Regional Crime Unit for further investigation. The police have not confirmed if the mail is directly related to Chen.

Chen’s godfather, Anthony Wong, expressed his concern about the matter at a China event. “First, let’s not talk about Edison Chen making a comeback; the most important thing now is to locate the loony. We are very worried for Edison,” he said.

Wong said his godson had not spoken about his “misfortune” but hoped that the public can give the latter another chance.

Jeon Ji-Hyun (Photo: Korean Herald)
Jeon Ji Hyun’s phone duplicators get punished
Jeon Ji-hyun is Chinese?

April 3, 2009

Crystal Huang YiLouis Koo
Derek Chiu
Louis Koo and Crystal Huang Yi filming Derek Chiu’s latest film in Guangzhou

Jacky Cheung and Tang Wei


Crossing Hennessy - Jacky Cheung and Tang Wei begin filming in Hong Kong

English version

Hollywood Reporter: Lu Chuan brings history to ‘Life and Death’ (Nanking! Nanking!)


The Rebel
Chinese poster of The Rebel

Examination 1977 poster

Jet Li
Jet Li hopes to return to filmmaking after a year’s layoff since the Sichuan earthquake

Taipei Times: An old tale learns new tricks in Colorful Mind
Talent and perseverance vie with power and privilege in Chen Kun-ho’s return to the cinema

Shinjuku Incident
This time, Jackie Chan isn’t joking

Still Walking
Japanese filmmaker Hirokazu Kore-eda crafts a beautiful story of a family brought together by the memory of a deceased son

Taipei Times: Pop Stop

Armed security engaged to protect Edison Chen
Despite the two bullet threat mails sent to Hong Kong media last month, Edison Chen will still be appearing in Singapore this Sunday at the press conference of movie “Sniper”. For enhanced security purposes, Shaw Organization has arranged for two armed security to be present besides 25 security personnel.

Faith from Shaw Organization’s Advertising and Promotions Department told Xin.sg that security at the press conference would be very tight. To ensure the safety of the artistes and press, they have arranged for armed police to be present; however, to avoid creating an overly tensed atmosphere, they only arranged for two of them to be present.

All media will also have to pass through security checks before entering the venue.

This is the second time that Chen is appearing in Singapore since the outbreak of the sex photos scandal. When he was here in end February to grace the new product launch of a fast food chain, hordes of overseas media stalked on his every movement, fans were also fighting to catch a glimpse of the actor. Chen did not seem resistant about the chaos and agreed to be in Singapore again to promote his movie this time round. Faith speculated that Chen was pleased with the previous round of visit, thus agreed to make his appearance again.

Coincidentally, the press conference will be held at the Grand Hyatt again; according to sources, Chen will also be staying in the hotel. Was it pure coincidence or was it trust in the hotel’s security measure? When Xin.sg approached the hotel in trying to understand their plans in receiving Chen, the hotel declined to comment.

Male lead of movie “Sniper”, Ritchie Ren, and director Dante Lam will be attending the press conference together with Chen. Other male lead, Huang Xiaoming, was unable to be here due to other work commitments. Xin.sg will be attending the press conference of “Sniper” on Apr 5. Stay tuned for more reports!

‘We were Edison’s human shields’
What is it like protecting such a high-profile celebrity as Edison Chen?

Vivian Chow - The Valient Maiden
The Eternal Maiden Queen” appeared calm and easy when photos of her boyfriend kissing a university girl, almost 20 years her junior, were splashed on tabloids.

Though Vivian Chow broke up with Joe Nieh briefly, she still chose to stand by him in trying times and married him eventually. The public opined that it was a silly and irrational move; but think twice about it, this decision calls for courage. For a woman who has been “emotionally betrayed” by a man, besides love, she has to have the courage to give this man a chance and even entrusts her lifetime to him.

This exclusive interview with Vivian was done in Singapore, before the Nieh’s kissing scandal broke out. Though the questions were screened beforehand, in the 25 minutes long interview, we still touched on topics outside the screened list and despite that, Vivian answers all questions without any evasion.

She tells us, “I must have gone through a lot of ups and downs to become who I am now. I will remember and cherish every important moment of my past performing career. My fans’ supports are my source of motivation.”

After the kissing scandal and her marriage, when Vivian first showed up in public in Hong Kong, she took on all reporters’ incisive questions with ease and is fully cooperative.

This is probably what she meant by “fruits of her self cultivation”. Vivian was cultured and refined in handling the issue that attracted region wide attention; she lives up to her name as “The Eternal Maiden Queen”.

Yet in her eyes, only Xiaolongn Jin Yong’s classic wuxia novel “The Return of the Condor Heroes” could be termed as a “maiden”.

“Perhaps when the modern viewers refer to an artiste as a maiden, they meant that she has high regards for oneself; I think viewers see me as such a lady. Actually there are many sides of me. I can be gentle and naughty at times,” she laughs, “There are times when I am active and prefer being with a crowd; but when I’m drawing, I’ll become another person. I simply immerse in my own world and do not communicate with others.”

“I believe everyone will regret throwing a temper after they did it. Usually I’ll throw my temper at home, over things which I’ve done and feel were not up to my own expectations. I’m always angry with myself and will just keep quiet. I don’t throw things around, not that crazy. I’m very simple,” Vivian adds.

She admitted to be very mindful of how others see her; the years she spent abroad after withdrawing from showbiz in 1999 made her mature and truly drop the burden of being an artiste.

“I do not feel much about the title as Maiden Queen now, and will not do anything to live up to that title; nothing can restrict my feelings or actions. I believe as a woman, when you find self-confidence, you can face everything with an open mind. For example this title as Maiden Queen, it does not bother me anymore. I am confident about myself and am happy with any assignments. I lead a fulfilling life.”

This self-confidence is perhaps the very source of courage that gives her the power to face the unhappiness that had happened; this self-confidence also convinced her that she is living a life “that’s filled with love and hopes”; that she has married the right man for her; and that they will have a wonder future together.

Perhaps, a title like the “Valiant Maiden” would be more apt for the current Vivian Chow.

Karen Mok
Karen Mok visits Prince Edward Island as Hong Kong’s Animal Ambassador

English version

Kelly ChenKathy Chow Man-Kei


I spy: Cecilia Cheung and Nic Tse

Cecilia Cheung considering comeback in remake of Derek Yee’s period film with Louis Koo 三少爷的剑.
(This is the same title as the 1977 Death Duel but not sure if this is a remake or not.)

Kelly Chen
Kelly Chen living dangerously, dodges traffic after dining at Thai restaurant

Rumour hitch to Andy Lau wedding talk


Yammie Nam
Yammie Nam (Lam Kit-Ying)

Kelvin Kwan
Kelvin Kwan announces that he will leave the entertainment industry for a long period
Dope-bust Kwan sorry, but happy to be a free man

Kim Yu-na Syndrome

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