Saturday, July 4, 2020

[2020.07.05] BEYOND THE DREAM STARS ARE NOT DISAPPOINTED WITH THE OPENING NUMBERS

courtesy of mingpao.com

Terrance Lau Chun Him and girlfriend Cecilia Choi Sze Wan yesterday attended the film BEYOND THE DREAM (WAN OI)'s forum in Yau Ma Tei. Choi Sze Wan revealed that when she was rushing to the venue it started pouring. She almost slipped and fell, luckily her boyfriend caught her in time. The film opened on July 2nd. Lau Chun Him said that the opening day box office was HK$ 150,000. Although it was not as ideal as expected, he was not disappointed. Choi Sze Wan explained that because the opening day was not a holiday, she believed that it would rise over the weekend. They would attend audience appreciation events everywhere to pump up the box office. They wanted to go to Tuen Mun the most. Lau Chun Him said, "Because Tuen Mun's box office was particularly good, maybe because the film was shot in Tuen Mun the residents felt a sense of familiarity and were able to relate."

As for future jobs, Choi Sze Wan later would work on a drama. Although she would play a supporting role, the character would still be rather important. Lau Chun Him would perform in a play about the Hong Kong Colonial era between 1970 and 1980. He said, "I heard that the script was finished as early as decades ago, before the Hong Kong Handover. This time would be a revival, so I am not worried that the subject would be sensitive." Born in 1988, Lau Chun him was not familiar with Hong Kong then. Thus he had to study a lot of research material.

[2020.07.05] STANLEY KWAN CONSIDERS WORKING WITH SAMMI CHENG AGAIN

courtesy of mingpao.com
courtesy of singtao.com

Stanley Kwan Kam Peng yesterday attended the mm2 Movie Makers Awards 2020 opening ceremony as a judge. He pointed out that this event would provide a platform for young people who were interested in joining the film industry to take their first step. This year the winner will be selected from 15 short films.

Speaking of the current Hong Kong young people's desire to join the industry, Kwan Kam Peng said, "I myself have been teaching a screenwriting class at the City University. I will teach a director's class in the future. I feel the students are still very passionate, even under the pandemic and so much has happened in Hong Kong. Everyone still was able to put their experience of this place in their work. Maybe the film industry now feels withered and discouraged, which instead would form a force of motivation creatively." ,br>
Kwan Kam Peng revealed that he was writing a story about a middle aged boss lady of a bar with decades of history. The story would take place in Tin Hau and Tai Hang. He admitted that he still intended for his multiple time collaboration Sammi Cheng Sau Man to play the boss lady role. As for the lead actor he has contacted Louis Koo Tin Lok, who was interested but he would wait until the script would be more a little mature before showing them. Preparation and screenplay writing required time, the soonest the production will begin would be next year.

Friday, July 3, 2020

[2020.07.04] EASON CHAN WILL PERFORM A CHARITY ONLINE CONCERT ON JULY 11TH



courtesy of mingpao.com
courtesy of on.cc
courtesy of singtao.com

4 veteran producers Ho Lai Chuen, Yip Wai Chue, Tse Ka Ho, Choi Kin Fai led the Hong Kong Live Performance and Production Industry Association, which hoped to be able to provide relief to professionals in the 5 fields of event organizing, engineering, music, choreography and production during the pandemic. The first task would be helping these members who had no income due to the pandemic. Yesterday the association held a press conference to announce Eason Chan Yik Shun's "Live is so much better with Music Eason Chan Charity Concert" online charity concert on July 11th. it would instantly bring work and income to 100 colleagues. This concert would be at sunrise and sunset, as the concert would be broadcast live around the world at 6AM and 5PM in hopes of bringing even more donations.

Due to the novel coronavirus, the economy fell into a depression for almost half a year. The heart of Hong Kong singers' performance venue have not had any concert for almost 200 days. Eason cancelled his cross year concert series last year. At a halt for almost half a year Eason still was concerned about his colleagues. He knew that many on and off screen workers did not eat if they did not work, so he agreed to this concert and did not charge a cent. Eason yesterday was unable to attend the press conference, but he shot a video and shared his personal experience.

In the video Eason stepped into the Hong Kong Coliseum for the shoot. In the beginning he entered from back stage. The cheerful HK Coliseum of the past now has become silent. Eason sat in the empty venue and got sentimental. "I have been to the HK Coliseum many times, but I have never seen it this quiet. If it wasn't for the pandemic, it probably wouldn't be resting for so long. My first HK Coliseum performance was a television station performance. What was special about the HK Coliseum was the four sided stage, you are completely naked for everyone to see. The choreography would have to keep all the audience in mind, which is very interesting; I also have a lot of valuable memories backstage, now the feeling is pretty ice cold. Yet during a concert it would be filled with a sea of flowers and I would see many friends from the crew; backstage would be very cheerful! With the pandemic no one would be able to predict how bad the situation would get, but tomorrow will be a new day,a new beginning. The world wouldn't change for you. The sun would rise as usual, whether good or bad it will pass."

Ho Lai Chuen and Yip Wai Chung as association chairs along with consultants Choi Kin Fai and Tse Ka Ho spoke with the media. They announced the establishment of the "Performing Pandemic Relief Fund" and had the support of Yan Chai Hospital to accept and distribute donations to qualified members who had no job or income over this half a year. So far the members numbered around a thousand. Currently the pandemic relief fund has already received many charitable organizations' donations that totaled in HK$ 5 million. The association's first major fund raising event would be Eason's charity concert. During the program fund raising would continue, the donation goal would be the higher the better. In the end all of the donations will be distributed to members.

Ho Lai Chuen said that the concert theme would be "Sunrise, Sunset", thus it chosen to take place at these two periods. Due to the gathering restriction order no audience would be admitted. To avoid fan gathering the performance venue would remain confidential for now. He only revealed, "At 6AM a half hour live performance would take place outdoors. At 5PM the event would move indoors, with a re-play of the "Sunrise" segment then a half hour of the "Sunset" live performance. The show would run for a hour total."

They pointed out that they would take the full precaution against the pandemic. Aside from Eason, 100 on and off screen workers would wear masks. In the end only 30 band members and Eason would perform. The show would be no different from an official concert production, and rehearsals have already begun.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

[2020.07.03] DIRECTOR BILLY TANG PASSED AWAY

Billy Tang (right) met with friends like Damien Lau (center) in May this year
Stephen Au reveals that Billy Tang influenced his work as a director
Billy Tang's final work is the yet to aired THE IMPOSSIBLE 3 with Bosco Wong, Julian Cheung, Chrissie Chau and others
Chapman To remembers working with Billy Tang on MY DATE WITH A VAMPIRE
The Billy Tang directed CHINESE MIDNIGHT EXPRESS
courtesy of mingpao.com
Alice Chan
Billy Tang (seated, center) often had gathering with people in the industry as he had a good connection with people
courtesy of on.cc

Started at RTV and known as the "Hong Kong crime film" first director, Billy Tang Hin Shing two days ago passed away at age 69. In the 1970s Tang Hin Shing joined RTV as an assistant director, participating in productions like REINCARNATED (TIN CHAM BIN). During the ATV era he wrote, directed and produced many classic series like WHO'S THE WINNER (SING JEH WAI WONG), THE PRIDE OF CHAOZHOU (NGOR LOI JI CHIU JAU), MY DATE WITH A VAMPIRE (NGOR WOR GEUNG SI YAU GOR YEUK WUI), and FLAMING BROTHERS (JUNG WAN SEI HOI). He also directed many films like DR. LAMB (GO YEUNG YI SUN), THOSE WERE THE DAYS...(CHI WAN SHAN SUP SAM TAI BO), and CHINESE MIDNIGHT EXPRESS (HAK YUK DUEN CHEUNG GOR JI CHAI SUN JU YUK). Later he went to work in the north, recently he worked on the TVB Shaw series FLYING TIGER II. The not yet aired THE IMPOSSIBLE 3 (FEI FAN SAM HUP) was his final work. Artists who have worked with him like Chapman To Man Chak, Pinky Cheung Man Chi and Benjamin Yuen Man Kit all remembered their late friend. Stephen Au Kam Tong remembered when he started in the business the "killer director" Tang Hin Shing turned on the microphone and cursed him out everyday to discipline him.

Reportedly earlier he started having health issues. He had Nasopharyngeal Carcinoma. Last month he attended a gathering with a group of directors, Damien Lau Chung Yan and Michelle Yim (Mai Suet). At the time he appeared to be in good spirit. Au Kam Tong worked with Tang Hin Shing many times. He said that news was sudden. He knew that the director struggled with illness for years. In recent years when he saw the director's return to television he thought his health has improved, but then came the bad news and he was rather saddened.

Ah Tong said that Tang Hin Shing was the director he worked with the most at ATV, the director also yelled at him the worst but at the same time he benefit the most from. When he started in the business he ran nto this "killer director", he had no acting ability and has yet to learn to take his mark. Each time he went to the set Tang Hin Shing would turn on the microphone and cursed him out.

He said that Tang Hin Shing's quick wit was faster than anyone in the world, everyone else could only give their all to catch up. Otherwise they would be cursed to the roof and they would deserve it. Ah Tong worked hard because of that, after work he still would stand behind the camera to learn. He said, "It wasn't because I wouldn't be yelled at later, but because I couldn't learn so much even if I paid." The director put a sense of cinema into his television series, had a strong personal style, a rare one that could both handle film and television.

Tang Hin Shing's wife Judy in social media group announced the passing of her husband. Pinky Cheung Man Chi's first lead role was in the Tang Hin Shing directed CHINESE MIDNIGHT EXPRESS. The lead actor was Tony Leung Chiu Wai. She said that she was fortunate to be a part of Tang Hin Shing's work. She respected him but also was scared of him. Later when they worked won VAMPIRE they even became good friends. She would always miss him. "I hope his family won't be too brokenhearted. I would pray for him. Earlier I heard that his health wasn't great, so I was already mentally prepared." Alice Chan Wai said, "The news is very upsetting. He was a very strict director at work. No one dared to be lazy while working with him. He was a son of the sun, whether he went on location no matter how hard the rain was it would stop. Although he looked very mean, he actually took great care of his actors. I would really miss him. I have worked with him on a movie and three television series!"

To Man Chak two nights ago remembered Tang Hin Shing on social media platform, remembering having breakfast and beer with him. He also described Tang Hin Shing's work as full of Yasujiro Ozu's scent and was deeply influential on his directing work. To Man Chak wrote, "It's me, the ugly one is standing up......having a safe journey! Cut!"

[2020.07.03] HONG KONG FILM BOX OFFICE FALLS 72% FROM SAME PERIOD LAST YEAR

courtesy of mingpao.com
courtesy of singtao.com

Under the novel coronavirus pandemic, every business and industry have been impacted. The film box office could even be said as one of the major disaster areas. Announced yesterday, in the first half of 2020 125 films were released in Hong Kong, but the box office was less than 1/3 of last year's with only over HK$ 293 million. The decline of almost 72% was beyond brutal.

The novel coronavirus started to affect Hong Kong since the Lunar New Year, impacting the Lunar New Year film box office. As people stayed at home to prevent the spread of the virus, cinema admission drastically dropped. Later the government on March 27th announced new regulation to prohibit the operation of such venues as cinemas, fitness centers and bath houses. It went into effect at 6 PM on March 28th.

When the pandemic began to ease, the government announced on May 8th that cinemas could reopen. Under the restriction cinemas were forced to open for 40 days. Although after cinemas re-opened the five major circuits released ticket discounts including 5 movies for HK$ 200 and HK$ 50 all day to attract viewers, people's desire to go to the movies still has not returned to normal. Such discounts were unable to bring back the box office losses that cinemas suffered during the closure.

Yesterday the Hong Kong Box Office Co. Ltd. announced the Hong Kong box office numbers in the first half of 2020. 125 films were released and the total box office revenue was HK$ 293,170,268. In comparison to HK$ 1,045,864,695 of the same period in 2019 the decline was over 72%.

The top grossing Hong Kong film of the first half of the year was THE GRAND GRANDMASTER (MUK DOI JUNG SI), which accumulated HK$ 29 million; in second was ALL'S WELL ENDS WELL 2020 (GA YAU HEI SI 2020) with almost HK$ 12 million; YOU ARE THE ONE (NGOR DIK SHUN POON NAM YAU) came in third with HK$ 6.31 million. The top grossing non Hong Kong film was ASHFALL with over HK$ 18 million. Four other non Hong Kong film that made over HK$ 10 million were 1917, DOLITTLE, BIRD OF PREY AND THE FANTABULOUS EMANCIPATION OF ONE HARLEY QUINN, and the still in release DIGIMON ADVENTURE: LAST EVOLUTION KIZUNA.

[2020.07.03] DAVID SIU SEES COMIC BOOK IN PLACE OF A WRITTEN SCREENPLAY FOR THE FIRST TIME

courtesy of mingpao.com
Wylie Chiu, Yuri Chan
courtesy of on.cc
David Siu
courtesy of singtao.com

David Siu Chung Hung yesterday appeared in Tsim Sha Tsui for the premiere of his film MIDNIGHT LILA (MO YEH CHA) with Wylie Chiu Shek Chi and Yuri Chan Yui Yui. Siu Chung Hung said that he did not expect the film to be released on the silver screen because they always thought it was for online screening online. He revealed that the film was comic book creator Wan Yat Leung's directing debut. His production method was completely different from that of traditional film directors he has worked with. Because he used comics to replace text in his screenplay, it was a storyboard was as thick as a phone book.

Siu Chung Hung also revealed that he caught the director's eyes for being as crazy as the comic character. Thus he was invited to play the villain. The character would sell out his mother and wife as long as it was to his advantage. It might be despicable to some viewers but some might like it.

Chiu Shek Chi and Chan Yui Yui both attended the premiere. Chiu Shek Chi pointed out that although she did not have any bed scene in the film, she revealed that in one scene when she faced off against her on screen husband the director asked me to yell like she was in an intimate situation. Was it awkward? She said that because the character design was special, it was not awkward. "Instead I thought it was kind of funny." Chan Yui Yui pointed out that the long dialogue in the film stumped her as she had many bad takes. "The night before I already memorized the lines very well, but I had to use a different tone from the one I normally used so they were rather to deliver." She also revealed that lately she was busy with her play rehearsal. For her stage debut she was anxious.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

[2020.07.02] FOR THE WEEK ENDING SUNDAY JUNE 28 2020

For the week ending Sunday June 28 2020
Photos courtesy of Yahoo! Movies Hong Kong



10 LOW SEASON
  Can : Hak Gwai Nui Pung Yau
    d. Nareubadee Wetchakam
    Mario Mauer, Ploypailin Thangpraporn
  Rating : IIA
  Length : 126 mins.
  Opening June 11 2020
  Trailer : https://youtu.be/zk25fk_77Qs

[ THE FILM CATALOGUE ]
    Lin, a young girl with a special sense who can see the ghost. She had problem maintaining a relationship with boys who think that she is crazy. When she tried to keep the fact a secret with her present boyfriend, Ton, who is a TV star and a popular guy with girls surrounding him. He broke up with her anyway for the other girl. She becomes tired of the big city and heads to the faraway resort in the North alone during the so-called "Low Season". She is confident that she won't have to meet the ‘tourists' that will get on her nerves. The place where the view worth millions while you need to pay for only hundreds. Lin arrived at one resort and met Puth, and the ghost of that resort haunted her right away. She could not sleep that night and she kept Puth awake all night too due to her TV staying on loudly all night.

    Next morning, she joined Puth on a taxi to another resort. Since she had nowhere to go, she tagged along with Puth and got drunk on the cab. She woke up and meet a group of 'weirdos' partying there. They came from all walks of life and came to heal their love wounds during the same low season period. Lin's plan of "lonesome chillin' out" got ruined right away.

    Puth, a young screenwriter, came to the resort with a task to write a ghost horror story. Lin became the source of material for his writings right away without her knowing. Both had join forces in the adventures, running together to get away from the ghost and they kinda had a special relationship somehow.

    Puth did not mind her special sense and found the usefulness of the ability and developed some story from their relationship. The relationship tended to move well towards a happy ending. However, the instagram status that Lin had posted get her boyfriend to come back to her asking for the reconciliation. Lin decided to take a chance with Ton again. Puth had nothing to say but to withdraw himself. Lin goes back to Bangkok and her normal life with hope for her rekindled love.

    But is it love? Lin can see ghosts but can she see Love for what it is?

    Low Season is the season for nature to recuperate, will that be the same with the human


  9 AT THE END OF THE MATINEE
  Can : Yut Gan Yin Jau Wui San Cheung Si
    d. Hiroshi Nishitani
    Masaharu Fukuyama, Yuriko Ishida
  Rating : IIA
  Length : 124 mins.
  Opening June 18 2020
  Trailer : https://youtu.be/vq0BuoUROJc

[ BROADWAY CIRCUIT ]
    The story begins with the meeting of classical guitarist Satoshi Makino and female journalist Yoko Komine. They are both in their 40's, a unique and delicate time in their lives...They are drawn to each other from the start, but Yoko is engaged to be married. Their jobs take them all over the globe. Powerless against the tides of time, missed opportunities and unexpected obstacles bring their relationship to an end. Memories of each other are locked deep in their hearts as they continue on separate paths. Will fate ever bring them back together again...?


  8 INHERITANCE
    d. Vaughn Stein
    Lily Collins, Simon Pegg, Connie Nielsen, Chace Crawford


  7 AKIRA
    d. Katsuhiro Otomo
    Japanese Animation
  Rating : IIB
  Length : 124 mins.
  Trailer : https://youtu.be/IGUyYSsXVMI

[ BROADWAY CIRCUIT ]
    A classic in its own right, Katsuhiro Otomo's visually stunning cyberpunk epic propelled Japanese anime to the global stage and has since left its mark on such live-action films is now restored in 4K. Set in a post-apocalyptic 2019 in Neo-Tokyo, a thriving metropolis flushed with violent motorcycle gangs and anti-government revolutionaries. Amidst such chaos stands Kaneda, a vigilante destined to stop his lifelong friend Tetsuo from unleashing the same forces of destruction that decimated the Japanese capital with a massive explosion in 1988. But history seems destined to repeat itself – a prophecy that’s as vivid now and it was back then.


  6 FUKUSHIMA 50
  Can : Fook Doh 50 Ying Hung
    d. Setsuro Wakamatsu
    Koichi Sato, Ken Watanabe, Hidetaka Yoshioka, Naoto Ogata
  Rating : IIA
  Length : 117 mins.
  Opening June 25 2020
  Teaser : https://youtu.be/pkMH-0jqgOA

[ MCL CINEMA ]
    A tsunami is triggered when a magnitude 9.0 earthquake hits the Pacific Ocean near Japan. A plant manager risks everything and stays put to handle the pending disaster once a reactor begins to leak. He is in contact with the parent utility TEPCO. The Japanese army moves in. The Americans also show up to command the situation. The plant employees fight on.


  5 THE HIGH NOTE
    d. Nisha Ganatra
    Dakota Johnson, Tracee Ellis Ross, Kelvin Harrison Jr., Ice Cube


  4 MY PRINCE EDWARD
  Can : Gum Doh
  Lit : Golden City
    d. Norris Wong Yi Lam
    Stephy Tang Lai Yun, Chu Pak Hong, Nina Paw Hee Ching,
      Jin Kaijie, Eman Lam, Hui So Ying, Kaki Shum Ka Kei
      Siuyea Lo Chun Yip, Creamy Yik Kin Yi, Bryant Mak Chi Lok
  Rating : IIB
  Length : 93 mins.
  Opening November 17 2019 at the Hong Kong Asian Film Festival
  Opening December 12 2019 (Preview)
  Opening May 9 2020 (Preview)
  Opening June 11 2020
  Trailer : https://youtu.be/DMUYt9i8V9s
  Site : https://www.facebook.com/myprinceedwardfilm

[ HONG KONG ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL ]
    Golden Plaza is a shopping mall that is best known for bridal shops and cheap wedding supplies in Hong Kong. Fong is a clerk at one such bridal shop. She has been with Edward, the owner of a wedding photography shop in the same mall, for seven years. Everyone sees Edward as Fong's Prince Charming, destined to head to the altar. The problem is that Fong must first sort out the sham marriage that she was paid to take part in years ago before she can get married for real.


  3 SUMIKKOGURASHI: GOOD TO BE IN THE CORNER
  AKA : SUMIKKO GURASHI THE MOVIE: THE POP-UP BOOK AND THE SECRET CHILD
  Can : Gok Lok Siu For Boon
  Lit : Little Corner Partners
    d. Mankyu
    Japanese Animation
  Rating : I
  Length : 66 mins.
  Opening June 25 2020
  Trailer : https://youtu.be/vzIlmYzcZWI

[ BROADWAY CIRCUIT ]
    In the usual corner at the usual café. What's in the mysterious picture book hidden in the basement…?

    One day, the Sumikko friends find an old pop-up book in the basement of their favorite Sumikko Café. When they are looking at the book, the mechanism suddenly starts moving and the Sumikko friends are sucked into the book. In the world of the book, they meet a lonely Hiyoko, who doesn’t where it is from or who it is.

    "Let's help Hiyoko find its home!" The Sumikko friends decide to help their new friend. The journey in the world of the book begins.


  2 DECLARED LEGALLY DEAD
  Can : SEI YUN MO HOR YI
  Lit : UNSUSPICIOUS CAUSE OF DEATH
    d. Steve Yuen Kim Wai
    Anthony Wong Chau Sun, Karena Lam Ka Yun,
      Carlos Chan Ka Lok, Kathy Yuen (Tong Yi), Liu Kai Chi,
      Stephen Au Kam Tong, Joey Tang Kin Ming, Fung So Bo,
      Cheung Chun Hung, Benjamin Auyeung Wai Ho
  Rating : IIB
  Length : 109 mins.
  Opening December 5 2019 (Preview)
  Opening April 2020 (Postponed)
  Opening June 25 2020
  Trailer : https://youtu.be/Ol0s_JWgFFg

[ THE FILM CATALOGUE ]
    When insurance agent Sean is called to visit Tak and Ling's home to follow up on a life insurance policy, he discovers their son's corpse hanging in the bathroom. Principled and kind-hearted, Sean suspects that the child may have been murdered.

    As Sean digs for the truth, the real perpetrator turns the tables and forces Sean into a psychological battle of wills.



  1 ONWARD
    d. Dan Scanlon
    Disney Pixar Animation
    English Voices: Tom Holland, Chris Pratt,
      Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Octavia Spencer