HKMDB Daily News

October 20, 2009

October 20, 2009

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , , — dleedlee @ 11:06 am

Producer Manfred Wong promotes Stubborn Radish aka Radish Warrior which opens later this month. (Sina.com)

The Message premiere in Taipei, Taiwan

(Sina.com)

Abu Dhabi - Maggie Q, Tian Zhuangzhuang, Joe Odagiri (The Warrior and The Wolf)

Vivian Chow

Vivian Chow was photographed in a gay bar preparing for her role in Ann Hui’s ‘Up and Down’ 《上上下下》. Ann Hui arranged for Vivian to visit an lesbian bar establishment in Lan Kwai Fong and meet some gay women. Vivian is earning a reported seven figure fee for her role in the film costarring Sandra Ng. (Xinhua)

Vivian Hsu

Vivian Hsu has been cast in the lead of the new film from Cape No. 7 director Wei Te-Sheng, to be produced by John Woo. Vivian will be putting her multi-lingual skills to use as she will be speaking in Japanese. (Sina.com)

Anthony Wong

CRI: Vivid Tang Dynasty Shown in TV Drama

Ning Hao

Ning Hao’s latest film ‘No Man’s Land’ is in post-production. It will feature a new side of Huang Bo, who is having a busy year with Cow, Radish Warrior and Crazy Racer. (Sina.com)

Zhang Yimou’s Three Guns is also in post-production and expected to be completed next month. The original story has changed and now is said to be three connected stories about paired couples and their quarrels. Staff have had to sign confidentiality agreements with $1M fines. Zhang Yimou has spent a great attention to the colors of the costumes discarding the originals and having them redone. Zhang is also busy working on his Turandot production at the Bird’s Nest. (Sina.com)

CRI: ‘True Legend’ to Open during Chinese New Year

Yuen Woo-Ping’s new film about 19th-century hero Su Qi-Er (Beggar So) will open in Chinese cinemas around mid-February in time for the Chinese Lunar New Year, the movie’s producers announced on Monday.

Moviegoers will also be able to see a few scenes featuring the late Hollywood actor David Carradine, who was known for his role in the “Kill Bill” series. Director Yuen invited Carradine to work on his film after a pleasant collaboration in “Kill Bill” for which Yuen was the stunt advisor.

THR: ‘Founding’ now top Chinese film

CRI: Zhou Xun Celebrates 35th Birthday and Best Actress Award

Black &; White sweeps Golden Bell amid controversy

101-year-old founder to become non-executive chairman

The Message (Screen Daily review)

Filed under: Reprints — Tags: — dleedlee @ 9:33 am

The Message

By Darcy Paquet

Dirs. Chen Kuo-fu, Gao Qunshu. China. 2009. 117 mins.

Good acting and a well-plotted mystery make for an entertaining ride in Chinese hit The Message, an Agatha Christie-style, WWII-era drama. Set in a luxuriously furnished stone castle and boasting ample star power, this film about sinister government agents trying to unmask a spy for the resistance grabs viewers’ attention from the start and never lets go.

Released wide on September 29 in China, this $10m film has taken $19.9m in 13 days with plenty of gas left in the tank. Chinese-speaking audiences across Asia are likely to respond with similar enthusiasm, and deals for a number of local territories have already been struck through Huayi Brothers. And although it will present marketing challenges in Western countries which could severely limit its potential there, The Message does have genuine popular appeal and could emerge through themed festivals.

In 1942 China, a resistance movement has begun assassinating top figures in the puppet government loyal to the Japanese. Top counterintelligence official Colonel Takeda (Huang Xiaoming) learns that resistance fighters have planted a mole within his department, so he lays a trap by planting a false message about a meeting in a remote seaside castle.

At the appointed date, five members of his department arrive at the castle, at which point he proceeds to lock them in and announces that one of them must be the mole, code-named Phantom.

The five suspects include the sultry Officer Li (Li Bingbing), an expert at code breaking; bouncy Ms. Gu (Zhao Xun), who initially takes the investigation as a joke; Captain Wu (Zhang Hanyu), who nurses a complex about his father’s shameful military career; openly gay Lieutenant Bai (Alec Su); and their older colleague Jin (Ying Da), who struggles under the strain of the investigation.

With their bedrooms tapped and soldiers standing guard at all times, the five suspects are pulled aside for separate interviews and soon tensions are running high. When Bai appears to be indicated by a handwriting analysis, he is dragged into the torture chamber but dies before issuing a confession. Soon it becomes clear that he was set up, however, and so the race to unmask Phantom enters a new phase.

The film’s briskly paced script gives multiple opportunities for its various stars to share the spotlight. The two leading women Zhou and Li stand out in particular, with Zhou bringing her usual dynamism to the role of Ms. Gu and Li giving emotional depth to a more subdued performance. But across the board, the ensemble cast is solid.

Directing duties were shared between Taiwan’s Chen Kuo-fu (Double Vision), who apparently focused on screenplay, postproduction and special effects, and up-and-coming filmmaker Gao Qunshu (Old Fish), who took the upper hand on set. The end result is sometimes slightly over-exuberant, with swooping cameras and an overdone opening credits sequence, but never short of energy. Technical credits, from the elegant costumes to the set design and the CG-rendered castle, are consistently slick.

Meanwhile, viewers are sure to take notice of (or issue with) the diabolically mischievous nature of the torture sequences, which stray far beyond the realm of political correctness, even though they are undeniably creative.

Production companies/international sales
Huayi Brothers Media Corporation Ltd.
+ 86 10 64579338

Producers
Wang Zhonglun
Feng Xiaogang

Screenplay
Chen Kuo-fu

Cinematography
Jake Harrison Pollock

Production design
Xiao Haihang

Music
Michiru Oshima

Main cast
Zhou Xun
Li Bingbing
Zhang Hanyu
Huang Xiaoming
Alec Su
Ying Da
Wang Zhiwen
http://www.screendaily.com/reviews/the-message/5007040.article

October 16, 2009

October 16, 2009a

HK Magazine: Shawn Yue Man-lok interview

bd magazine talks to Herman Yau - A Different Split

HK Magazine and bc Magazine Film Reviews

The Message

Seeing “The Message” makes one realize just how strong mainland cinema has become in recent years, and also makes you worry about whether Hong Kong cinema can keep up.

The end result is a propaganda film that is more embarrassing than patriotic. I would have preferred to be brainwashed than to see this piece of crap.

Chrissie Chau proves she has more potential than just as a seducer of teenage boys with her life-size cushion.

The film suffers from very slow pacing and, at over two hours, has probably managed to successfully alienate its intended demographic. It is genuinely surprising that the film’s producer, acclaimed filmmaker Ann Hui, didn’t have a quiet word in her protégé’s ear to suggest that if the film lost half an hour, it would stand a far better chance of being appreciated by those who will benefit most from it.

It’s easy to roll your eyes and dismiss this film as yet another popular Japanese romance weepie, but the truth is it’s a dramatic interpretation and enactment of a real person’s last days, a young woman given the short end of the stick by Fate.

HK PICKS

The Warrior and The Wolf

(China) An army commander during the Han Dynasty falls in love with a beautiful widow while stranded in the desert, with disastrous results. Directed by Tian Zhuangzhuang. Starring Maggie Q, Joe Odagiri. Opens Oct 22.

Poker King

(Hong Kong) Another local gambling-themed romantic comedy except this time they’re playing Texas Hold’em in Macau. Directed by Chan Hing-ka, Janet Chun. Starring Lau Ching- wan, Louis Koo, Stephy Tang. Opens Oct 22.

Astro Boy

(USA) The popular Japanese manga gets a slick, 3-D facelift in this animated feature. Directed by David Bowers with an all-star voice cast including Kristen Bell, Nicolas Cage, Charlize Theron and Samuel L. Jackson. Opens Oct 23.

bc magazine’s HKAFF Preview

The Warrior and the Wolf

The opening film is a large scale historical epic, starring Japanese navel-gazing superstar Odagiri Jo and originally Tang Wei – her with the hairy armpits in Lust, Caution. But since being banned from appearing in Mainland productions, the infinitely more attractive, though perhaps not as talented Maggie Q, steps into the fold. Directed by Tian Zhuangzhuang – not a New Romantic band, but rather the highly acclaimed director of films like The Horse Thief and Springtime in a Small Town, as well as the elegant snoozefest, The Go Master. This looks bigger, louder, faster and sexier, so here’s opening the festival opens with a bang.

At the End of Daybreak

The closing film this year comes from Ho Yuhang, the award-winning Malaysian director of Sanctuary and Rain Dogs. The film details a secret relationship between a simple working class lad and a wealthier schoolgirl, a tryst that turns sour leading to blackmail and far worse. Examining their fractured family lives, the lack of parental control, class divisions and broader criticisms of society, At The End of Daybreak continues to cement Ho’s reputation as one of the most important filmmakers in a region of ever-increasing relevance.

Breathless

Actor Yang Ik June turns Writer, Producer and Director in this bold, brutal and uncompromising tale of domestic violence and self-destruction. Picking up a slew of awards on the global festival circuit, Breathless is the largely autobiographical tale of a brutish, deeply disturbed debt collector, who crosses paths with an equally abrasive schoolgirl, only for this mismatched pair to strike up an unlikely friendship. The cutting edge of Korean Independent Cinema.

Mother

Highly acclaimed and internationally successful director Bong Joon Ho (Memories of Murder, The Host) has, by all accounts, turned in another masterpiece. Controversially centring this tale of murder, corruption, justice and revenge on an aging female protagonist, the film follows the titular matriarch as she sets out to clear the name of her handicapped son, accused of murdering a schoolgirl and coerced by authorities into signing a confession. Mother is slated to be Korea’s official entry into next year’s Academy Awards and promises to be an intelligent, yet thrilling experience.

Air Doll

Hirokazu Koreeda’s latest film, after a string of critical hits including Nobody Knows and Still Walking, seemed at first glance to be a controversy-baiting piece of poorly judged titillation, casting Korean star Bae Doo Na as a sex doll that miraculously comes to life. What has emerged, however, is a different beast entirely. Air Doll is a delightful tale of unrequited love examining what it means to be human and the loneliness of urban life, while putting a decidedly Japanese spin on the old Pinocchio story.

Face

Always a talking point, the films of Taiwanese director Tsai Ming Liang often defy description. This is especially true of his latest French co-production, Face. Purportedly about a Taiwanese filmmaker (Tsai’s regular cohort Lee Kang Sheng) travelling to Paris in order to stage an adaptation of Salome at The Louvre, Face is a bold, challenging spectacle, brimming with beautiful imagery and even the occasional show tune. Some have loved it, some have hated it, some have been bored to tears – but everybody who has seen Face has come away with a strong, opinionated response.

Crows: Zero II

Whether he is making depraved horror films like Visitor Q or Audition, or big budget family-friendly fare such as The Great Yokai War or Yatterman, a new Miike Takashi movie is always worthy of attention.

This clumsily titled sequel to 2007’s Crows: Zero (which played at last year’s HKAFF) guarantees fisticuffs galore as he continues to adapt Takahashi Hiroki’s school gang manga for the big screen. Expect fighting, swearing, wonderful accessorising of militaristic school uniforms and, this time out, an entire army of skinheads. Not particularly highbrow, but sure to be lots of fun.

The Housemaid

Widely hailed as one of the greatest Korean films ever made, this 1960 psychodrama tells the tale of a regular family torn apart after their newly-hired maid turns out to be a sexual predator with her own increasingly evil agenda. Largely unknown outside of Korea until the 1990s, this is a revelatory piece of work that had the Global Film Community finally looking East to the Han Peninsula.

HK Magazine: G.E.M. interview

Coco Lee’s take on fame and music

October 16, 2009

CRI: ‘The Message’ Trilogy on Agenda

“The Message” closes nine-day-run Pusan film festival

“The Message” joins Pusan Int’l Film Festival

Zhou Xun

Zhou Xun had to endure rope burns for these torture scenes. Her thighs suffered and were injured in the process since the costume was very thin for realism. (Sina.com)

Peter Chan

Tony Leung Ka-Fai

(Sina.com)

Bodyguards and Assassins: 8 minute show reel previewed in Beijing

No fear of competing against Zhang Yimou’s Three Guns

CRI: Jiang Wenli’s Debut Film Wins Award at Pusan Film Fest

Actress/director Jiang Wenli’s “Lan” won the Audience Award at the Pusan International Film Festival on Friday.


LATimes: New York, I Love You

Maggie Q enjoys her ‘New York’ minute

Maggie Q New York premiere - slide show

Screen Daily: At The End of Daybreak (Malaysia/HK/South Korea)

Screen Daily: Taiwan’s Zeus set to produce triptych love story Juliet

Taiwanese producer Khan Lee is lining up a portmanteau love story, Juliet, as the second installment in its Pushing Hands initiative, designed to support new talent.

Taipei Times: Pop Stop

October 9, 2009

The Message (Variety review)

Filed under: Reprints — Tags: — dleedlee @ 9:15 am

The Message
Feng sheng

(China) A Huayi Brothers Media Corp. release of a Huayi Brothers, Shanghai Film Studio, China Tianjin Film Studio, Huayi Brothers Intl. Distribution production. (International sales: Huayi Brothers Media Corp., Beijing.) Produced by Wang Zhonglun, Wang Zhonglei, Chen Kuo-fu. Executive producers, Feng Xiaogang, Wang Zhonglei. Directed by Chen Kuo-fu, Gao Qunshu. Screenplay, Chen, based on the 2007 novel by Mai Jia.

With: Zhou Xun, Li Bingbing, Zhang Hanyu, Huang Xiaoming, Wang Zhiwen, Ying Da, Alec Su, Shi Zhaoqi, Masayuki Natori, Ni Dahong, Duan Yihong, Liu Weiwei, Wu Gang, Zhu Xu, Zhang Yibai.
(Mandarin, Japanese dialogue)

By DEREK ELLEY
Golden Age Hollywood meets Chinese period melodrama in “The Message,” a full-bore WWII spy whodunit that plays like an Asian cross between “Clue” and “Now, Voyager.” Laden with homages to classic Warner Bros. dramas and tips of the hat to mystery writers like Agatha Christie, this star-laden monster-mash will prove too rich a mixture for most Western palates. But for those prepared to go the distance (and fans of popular Asian cinema), it’s an exhilarating, intensely cinematic ride. The reportedly $7 million pic swamped Chinese theaters Sept. 30 and took a hefty $10 million in its opening weekend.

Script by Taiwanese writer-director Chen Kuo-fu (”Double Vision,” “The Personals”), who co-helmed with bright mainland Chinese talent Gao Qunshu (”Tokyo Trial,” “Old Fish”), is liberally adapted from the 2007 Mai Jia novel that formed the last in a trilogy of stories about WWII code-breakers. Aside from its star-heavy cast and fine production values, the pic undoubtedly benefited locally from Mai’s recent fame with a successful TV adaptation of the second book in the trilogy.

Opening reel — which starts with an aerial swoop-down on October 1942 Nanjing, where the invading Japanese have set up a puppet Chinese government to draw support away from the official KMT one — contains a mass of information and character introductions that’s hard to digest on a first viewing. In short order, a puppet-government lackey (Duan Yihong) is shot by a female rebel (Liu Weiwei), who’s later caught and tortured for info.

Col. Takeda (Huang Xiaoming) discovers there’s a rebel mole inside his own counterinsurgency center. The mole could be one of five people, all of whom he invites to a remote mansion in the mountains for what becomes a classic locked-room whodunit.

The suspects are cool but foxy decoding department head Li Ningyu (Li Bingbing), the best code-breaker in the business; administrative officer Gu Xiaomeng (Zhou Xun), a spoiled rich girl who arrives with a massive hangover; military office section chief Wu Zhiguo (Zhang Hanyu), a tough, battle-scarred soldier; officer Bai Xiaonian (Taiwan’s Alec Su), a flamboyant homosexual; and section chief Jin Shenguo (comedian Ying Da), a bluff, portly vet.

The host of the meeting is Commissioner Wang (Wang Zhiwen), a half-psychotic Chinese turncoat. But it’s Takeda who’s the real host, telling the five suspects that no one is leaving until the mole, codenamed Phantom, is unmasked.

The subsequent hour, entirely set in the European-style baronial residence and its adjoining torture chamber, is a classic potboiler mystery-thriller, as the suspects quarrel, scheme and are picked off one by one by Takeda. Labyrinthine plot is both clever and highly unlikely, but realism is hardly the issue in what is basically an old-fashioned multistar vehicle in which the thesps strut their stuff.

Pic is billed locally as China’s first wartime spy movie, which is not exactly true. But it’s certainly the first done in such a lavish style, and with so many cross-cultural cinematic references.

Some auds may be troubled by the copious torture sequences, which, though they rely more on suggestion than graphic visuals, are especially squirm-inducing in the case of the women. Their dramatic overdrive harks back to a whole tradition in Chinese cinema (both mainland and offshore) of Japanese nasties doing horrid things to Chinese patriots.

The petite Zhou brings her usual gravel-voiced vampiness to the character of Gu, but Li, as the cool codebreaker, quietly trumps her in the acting stakes. Hot new star Huang, speaking slightly accented Mandarin, is excellent as the sadistic, increasingly desperate Takeda, while the experienced Zhang and Wang face off among the older male players.

CG effects, done in China, are smoothly showy, deliberately evoking a ’30s/’40s look, and costuming by Hong Kong ace Tim Yip (”Red Cliff,” “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon”) and Wu Baoling is as rich as the score by Michiru Oshima and lensing by Taiwan-based Jake Pollock (”Yang Yang”).

Reportedly, Gao handled most of the actual direction while Chen focused more on script and producer duties. Pic has no overriding visual style, swinging between sweeping crane shots and handheld closeups — disappointing, given the rich production design, but adding to the film’s restless energy.

Huayi has promised a three-hour version on DVD, which could help to fill in some of the backstories — including that of Gu’s lover (Natori Masayuki), only referenced in some confusing flashbacks. Chinese title literally translates as “The Sound of the Wind,” but also means “rumors” or “information.”

Camera (color, widescreen), Jake Pollock; editor, Xiao Yang; music, Michiru Oshima; art director, Xiao Haihang; costume designers, Tim Yip, Wu Baoling; sound (Dolby Digital), Wang Danrong; visual effects, Wonder Star VFX; visual effects supervisor, Hu Xuan; assistant director, Zhang Lidong. Reviewed at Megabox 8, Beijing, Oct. 6, 2009. (Also in Pusan Film Festival — closer.) Running time: 114 MIN.

http://www.variety.com/review/VE1117941338.html?categoryid=31&cs=1

October 8, 2009

The Message (Hollywood Reporter review)

Filed under: Reprints — Tags: — dleedlee @ 10:07 am

The Message
Bottom Line: A period spy thriller excelling in suspense.

HONG KONG — Extravagantly produced to exude an abundance of period elegance, danger and intrigue that sparks associations with “Lust, Caution,” “The Message” is a ’40s Sino-Japanese spy thriller that’s replaced lust with torture as the porn. Co-directing with Taiwan’s Chen Kuo-fu (”Double Vision”), who also supplies the elaborate screenplay, China’s Gao Qunshu turns his craft at mounting suspense from events set in a tight space and time frame (exemplified by his bomb-detonation thriller “Old Fish”) to a more psychological rather than situation-driven level.

Although showy visual effects and cinematography strain the moviemaking, these bells and whistles were designed to impress the target mainland audience, who gave their seal of approval by filling cinemas on opening National Day weekend.

Overseas audiences may feel ambushed by the flurry of characters and historical facts that the film rushes through, although essentially the set-up is a variation on an Agatha Christie whodunnit. In 1942, five personnel in the intelligence unit of Wang Jingwei’s traitor regime are confined for five days in a villa in the suburbs of Beijing. Three of them are central figures: Morse code expert Ningyu (Lee Bingbing), mailroom staffer Xiaomeng and army captain Wu Jinguo (Zhang Hanyu). One of them is an infiltrator code-named Phantom.

To unmask Phantom’s identity, Japanese colonel Takeda (Huang Xiaoming) and his collaborator Wang play the suspects off each other, crushing them mentally and physically with cruel means. Phantom must be equally ruthless to survive and get a message out to resistance leader Magnum.

The mind games, not particularly subtle, are effectively twisted, but the torture scenes are what this film will be remembered for. They are choreographed to abet imagination of unspeakable pain and horror without showing anything really graphic (thus getting around censorship). The sensational array of instruments and methods makes “Hostel” and “Martyrs” seem like one-trick ponies. This rarefied depiction of torture as a sophisticated art form makes one shudder more at the sick minds behind it.

Of the three central figures, Zhou and Li perform with the expressive grace of silent movie heroines. Even as a coquettish rich girl, Zhou hints at inner depth. As the less worldly Ningyu, Li displays poise where one expects hysteria when navigating perilous situations. The male leads don’t stand up to them. Huang is especially wooden, and squanders the chance to develop a role already attributed with complex motives. It also is awkward to see Zhang play a collaborator with the same upstanding dignity as the Communist officer in “The Assembly.”

Some of the production’s heaviest investments are its most glaring aspects, like the CGI overkill, and the ostentatious cinematography by Jake Pollock. The villa is never framed without the fly-cam swooping and fluttering around it, making it look like one of those those haunted castles in Roger Corman movies. Even when the female leads are having a tete-a-tete, the camera swivels and sweeps around them so much you want to shoo it away so as concentrate on the ensemble acting.

Venue: Pusan International Film Festival — Closing film

Sales: Huayi Brothers Media Corporation Ltd.
Production: Huayi Brothers Media Corporation Ltd, Shanghai Film Group Corp.
Cast: Zhou Xun, Li Bingbing, Zhang Hanyu, Huang Xiaoming, Su Youpeng
Directors: Gao Qunshu, Chen Kuo-fu
Screenwriter: Chen Kuo-fu
Based on the novel by: Mai Jia
Producer: Wang Zhongjun
Executive producer: Feng Xiaogang
Director of photography: Jake Pollock
Production designer: Xiao Haihang
Art director-costume designer: Tim Yip
Music: Michiru Oshima
Editor: Xiao Yang
No rating, 120 minutes

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/film-reviews/the-message-film-review-1004020234.story

October 2, 2009

October 2, 2009

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , — dleedlee @ 10:10 am

THR: Rising in the East

These days the answer to nearly every question about the Asian film industry is China…

“Our 2008 work ‘Lady Cop & Papa Crook’ was an effort to adapt ourselves more to the Chinese movie market and win favor with Chinese audiences,” Mak says. “However, we have returned to the Hong Kong style in ‘Overheard,’ and I think it is the way for us to go — to adapt ourselves to new markets while keeping our style.”

‘We should be looking closely at China because it is our future,” Shelly Kraicer argues. “Shanghai is our future. It’s vitally important we know what is going on.”

One of the more mainstream offerings is Hong Kong director Ann Hui’s Night and Fog. Based on a true story of horrific domestic violence, the film raises many provocative questions - about ethnicity, gender politics and the social responsibility and effectiveness of the state.

Independently filmed documentaries are using a grey area in a censorship-prone Chinese environment to find their way into the hearts and minds of people globally and those of a limited domestic audience as well.

Chinese communist films get rare attention at NYFF

Chinese cinema flourished with the rise of communism, a timely relationship that resulted in tensions between artistic and moralistic tendencies.

Behind ‘ District 9,’ ‘3D Garfield’s Pet Force’

SCMP video

October 1, 2009

October 1, 2009

‘Informed sources’ report that Zhang Ziyi has indeed been retained to play Tony Leung’s wife in Wong Kar-Wai’s First Generation Master. Zhang Ziyi, through her manager, denied the rumor yesterday. Elsewhere, it’s been reported that Wong Kar-Wai is under a lot of pressure as Ip Man was a big box office success and will now compete against Ip Man 2. The casting of Zhang Ziyi is viewed as a counterstrike. Ip Man’s son was asked about the pair, he said, ‘Both Lynn Xiong and Zhang Ziyi are very thin. My mother was similiar in build (?). I have not seen Zhang Ziyi’s acting but Lynn Xiong in Ip Man was pretty good.’

Brigitte Lin reportedly turned down a role because it was not tailor-made for her. Chang Chen is said to play Bruce Lee. Filming is now slated to commence in November.

(Xinhuanet.com)

Barbie Hsu and Nic Tse

Nic and Barbie shoot a special effects scene in the studio for Hot Summer Days. Today, Nic is flying to Beijing to perform in the National Day celebration. (Sina.com)

Mike He, Li Xiaolu

Alfred Cheung’s new film 7 Days To Fall in Love With You opens Nov.3. Lead actress Li Xiaolu recommends spending the National Day Holiday to find a new boyfriend or girlfriend. (Xinhuanet.com)

Korea Times: ‘Rain’ Falls on Summer-Battered Hearts

Would you give love a second chance? In his fifth feature “A Good Rain Knows,” (aka Season of Good Rain) melodrama maestro Hur Jin-ho says “yes,” orchestrating another romance that seeps into the viewers’ hearts with a graceful andante tempo.

Korea Times: Jang Dong-kun makes a comeback onscreen as a character not unlike himself ― an eligible bachelor ― in “Good Morning President.”

NYTimes: Indie Filmmakers: China’s New Guerrillas

Like independent filmmakers everywhere, Mr. Zhao worked with no guarantee of an audience, or even a place to show his work. By his estimates only a few thousand people have seen “Ghost Town” in China since he finished it last year. Several hundred more are scheduled to see it Sunday afternoon when the film has its international premiere at the New York Film Festival.

Ang Lee says he’s baffled by ‘Woodstock’ results

The Message hits theaters for National Day

The movie was directed by Gao Qunshu from the mainland and Chen Kuofu from Taiwan. According to Chen, the movie was filmed to tell the destinies of people involved in China’s Anti-Japanese Aggression War (1937-1945)…

The plot of the film was inspired after a murder mystery game, in which one tries to guess who is “killing” the others in the group. However, the film is more solemn than the game, as heroes and heroines in the movie are tortured both physically and spiritually in a bid to fulfill their purposes.

September 28, 2009

September 28, 2009

Spy drama Happy Autumn(?) set in 1949 Guangzhou features Guo Xiaodong and Sun Chun, opens Oct.14. (cri.cn)

Guo Xiaodong

Sun Chun, Guo Xiaodong (Sina.com)

The Message has been on whirlwind media tour around the country. At one enthusiastic meeting with fans Huayi Brothers CEO Wang Zhonglei has promised that if The Message broke $300M at the box office he would release a 3 hour DVD version! The theatrical version runs 122 minutes. According to reports, the footage shot for the Li Bingbing-Huang Xiaoming ‘medical checkup’ scene is almost equal to that alone. (cri.cn)

(Sina.com)

Fan Bingbing

Huang Jue

Du Jiayi

Director He Ping

Wheat arrives in Beijing (Sina.com)

Huang Jue Exposed in ‘Wheat’

Known for his relationship with actress-director Xu Jinglei, actor Huang Jue has stepped out of his comfort zone to reveal his true colors in the film “The Wheat”.

“The Wheat” tells the story of two Qin soldiers fleeing from war and taking refuge in the small town of Zhao, where all of the adult men of the village have gone to war. To survive, the fugitives change their identities into Zhao soldiers who had won the battle against Qin.

Rene Liu, Jacky Cheung

With production moving from Beijing to Shenzhen, Jacky Cheung and Rene Liu were in Shenzhen to promote their upcoming New Year’s/Valentine’s Day film Hot Summer Day (formerly Yit Lat Lat). The film is a Huayi Brothers and Fox joint venture. The stellar cast will include Nic Tse, Daniel Wu, Barbie Hsu, Vivian Hsu, and Duan Yihong. When Jacky was asked about the difference between Rene and his recent costar Tang Wei (Crossing Hennessy), he replied that Rene was more experienced and Tang Wei needed more time as she was still new. (Xinhuanet.com)

Visitors From The Sui Dyansty from director Zhang Yuxin (Teeth of Love) features time travellers in this new comedy.  Trailer (Sina.com)

3D ‘Deer’ Premieres

“The King of Milu Deer”, which claims to be China’s first animated 3D blockbuster, premiered on Saturday in Beijing.

Chow Yun-Fat ‘Dancing with Strangers’

Hong Kong actor Chow Yun-Fat’s next film will be a Spanish-American-German-Chinese cooperation, Screendaily.com reports.

Huang Xiaolei

Da Zhang Wei

Director Liang Chao

Royal Tattoo red carpet photos (Sina.com)

Astroboy opens Oct.23

Astroboy mosaic made of 138,000 recycled subway tickets on display in a Shinjuku department store. (Sina.com)

China picks ‘Forever Enthralled’ for Oscars

Emperor hires Ivy Ho for marketing

Former HKIFF awards director joins after 15 years in industry

September 25, 2009

September 25, 2009

Filed under: News — Tags: , , , , , , , — dleedlee @ 4:04 pm

Zhou Xun flipping off reporters?

No! Zhou Xu was wiping away tears after viewing The Message at the Beijing Film Academy public premiere. (cri.cn)

Li Bingbing

Liu Yun, Deng Jiajia

Duan Yihong (cri.cn)

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