Thursday, June 14, 2007

The Golden Rock - June 13th, 2007 Edition

- Let's start with the weekly Oricon charts today. The singles chart was shook up by the new single by Johnny's Entertainment boy band KAT-TUN. Debuting at first place, they sold a phenomenal 300,000 copies (considering the weak singles chart in the last two months, 300k is pretty damn good), but like most boy bands, expect that number to see a pretty steep drop by next week. Elsewhere, Keisuke Kuwata's Ashita Hareru Kana sticks around for yet another week at 5th place, selling another 20,000 copies. Another drama theme, Bonnie Pink's Water Me, fails to take advantage of Liar Game's popularity and debuts only at 8th place with 15,000 copies sold. Next week, expect YUI's latest to rule the charts, as KAT-TUN has already fallen quite a bit.

On the album chart, another Johnny's boy group Kanjani debuted at number one with their latest album, selling 211,000 copies. ZARD's Golden Best album rises to second place this week after the death of singer Izumi Sakai, with nearly 60,000 copies sold. Mariya Takeuchi's album falls to third place after taking the top spot for two weeks in a row, Marilyn Manson's latest manage to sell 15,000 copies at 15th place, and MUCC also manages to sell 8000 copies of their worst-of album. Believe it or not, Bon Jovi might rule the album chart next week. That's even scarier than Linkin Park.

- Following the casting of Yu Aoi for the big Fuji TV animated special, Japanese pop star Namie Amuro will make her voice debut for the computerized animated series "The World of Golden Egg," and her scenes will appear in a DVD that will come with her upcoming album. This is what it will roughly look like.

- Variety Asia has more on the box office performance of Shrek 3 and the historical epic Hwang Jin Yi this past weekend.

- China is expecting 4 billion people will watch the Beijing Olympics next year, 1 billion more than the 2004 Athens Olympics. Um...did they just add the entire Chinese population onto that number?

- There's also a "propaganda" film being made in China about the first Chinese athlete that competed in the Olympics. Propaganda? Nationalist films from a democratic country=patriotic, and nationalist films from a non-democratic country=propaganda? These guys aren't exactly the freaking Nazis, people.

- Christopher Nolan's The Prestige didn't do so hot this past weekend in Japan, making only 110 million yen. That's only 38% of Batman Begins, which didn't even do all the well in Japan with only 1.4 billion yen total gross. Apparently the Japanese theme song by Gackt didn't help things, nor did that poster.

- I saw the French film 36 two years ago in Hong Kong and thought it was OK (I like the idea better than the execution). Now Martin Campbell, who made two solid 007 movies, has signed on to do the remake, which will shift the focus to two 30-something detectives instead. I figured it was prime for a Hollywood remake, but I'm not looking very forward to it.

- Live Free or Die Hard, the 4th film in the series (and bound to be the weakest in terms of intensity thanks to the studio's intention to make a PG-13 movie) is apparently set to open in Japan before anywhere else in the world.

- BC Magazine, where a certain blogger on the right works at, has a bunch of reviews for new Hong Kong films such as Call me Left and Law Chi-Leung's Kidnap.

- Hollywood Reporter writes about Naomi Kawase's further complaints about the Japanese government's lack of support of local cinema.

- Twitch has more on Never Forever, a Korean-American joint production by Gina Kim and produced by Lee Chang-Dong (Secret Sunshine). It premiered in Sundance 2007, but what's the word-of-mouth?

- Following in the footsteps of Hong Kong's successful Entertainment Expo, Tokyo has unveiled its own 40-day long Contents Festival, which will include the Tokyo Game Show, a music market, a developer's conference, an animation meeting, and the Tokyo International Film Festival. That's probably a little too much for anyone to handle, but I doubt anyone will be there for all 40 days anyway. Except maybe me. It will start this September.

- Rain just can't get a break. His highly-anticipated North American concert tour has been halted because a small Nevada record company called Rain Corp. is suing Rain for the use of the name. Rain will now either have to pay to use the name, or just simply call off the concerts. Who is surprised that something like this happened?

- Another Japanese comic is being adapted into a drama, but this time it's a very serious story about the aftermath of the atomic bombing in Nagasaki.

- Spanish filmmakers can't even get their own people to like local films. The top three box office grossers from last year are from Hollywood, while the highest grossing Spanish film is a "swashbuckling extravaganza." I love the last line: "The biggest fans of homegrown cinema were in the lowest income bracket, with lower educational qualifications, Garcia said." Short version: Spanish mainstream audiences share taste with rest of the world outside the United States.

No comments: