Frater Asia Latest Celebrity News & Gossip

China Box Office: ‘Godzilla x Kong’ Retakes Lead, as ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Passes $100 Million - variety.com - China - Japan
variety.com
23.04.2024

China Box Office: ‘Godzilla x Kong’ Retakes Lead, as ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Passes $100 Million

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Fantasy action movie “Godzilla x Kong: The New Empire” retook the top spot at the mainland China box office from Studio Ghibli animation title “The Boy and the Heron” during the latest weekend. “Godzilla x Kong” recorded earnings of $7.3 million (RMB51.5 million) between Friday and Sunday, a 32% week-on-week drop, according to data from consultancy firm Artisan Gateway. But it returned to the top spot on the box office charts in its fourth weekend of release and overtook “The Boy and the Heron” in the process.

K-Pop Clash as HYBE Probes Alleged Breakaway Attempt by NewJeans Label ADOR - variety.com - South Korea - North Korea
variety.com
24.04.2024

K-Pop Clash as HYBE Probes Alleged Breakaway Attempt by NewJeans Label ADOR

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief HYBE Corp., the biggest corporation in the South Korean pop music scene, has begun an audit into ADOR, the label responsible for K-pop act NewJeans. HYBE says that executives at the majority-owned subsidiary mya be attempting to break away from the conglomerate. “HYBE invoked the right to audit CEO Min Hee-Jin and top executives of its subsidiary label ADOR, called them to summon a shareholder meeting and sent an official letter to ask CEO Min to step down,” HYBE said in a statement emailed to Variety. Media sources in Korea have reported that the audit targets Min and one of her deputies and that computer assets have been seized and face-to-face statements already taken. They also report that HYBE suspects Min and her deputy to have circulated confidential information to outsiders in a possible bid to attract investors who would allow ADOR to gain its independence from the parent company. ADOR was founded in 2021 as a HYBE subsidiary and is currently 18% owned by Min, a renown hit-maker in the Korean music industry.

Cast Assembled for ‘The Guns of Muschu’ Australian Wartime Survival Film - variety.com - Australia - New Zealand - Jordan - Japan - Papua New Guinea
variety.com
24.04.2024

Cast Assembled for ‘The Guns of Muschu’ Australian Wartime Survival Film

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Epic war-time survival tale “The Guns of Muschu” has already assembled a weighty cast ahead of a production start in the first quarter of 2025. The film is an adaptation of the non-fiction book “The Guns of Muschu,” written by Don Dennis, with an adapted screenplay by Tom Broadhurst and Jack Brislee (“Danger Close: The Battle of Long Tan”). The narrative brings to life a pivotal chapter of Australian war history with gritty authenticity, recounting the high body count Operation Copper, a mission during WWII when Australian and New Zealand troops were sent into the jungles of Papua New Guinea. The objective of the mission was to investigate the Japanese defenses on Muschu Island, capture a Japanese officer for interrogation and discover the location of two naval guns on the island that were protecting a harbor.

‘Midnight Oil: The Hardest Line’ Rockumentary to Open Sydney Film Festival - variety.com - Australia - USA - state Theatre
variety.com
23.04.2024

‘Midnight Oil: The Hardest Line’ Rockumentary to Open Sydney Film Festival

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “Midnight Oil: The Hardest Line,” a documentary feature about the veteran Australian rock band Midnight Oil, has been set as the opening gala title at the Sydney Film Festival. It will have its world premiere at the State Theatre on June 5, kicking off the festival that runs until June 16. The film is written and directed by Paul Clarke and produced by Carolina Sorensen. It was executive produced by Mikael Borglund, Paul Clarke and Martin Fabinyi. It is a Blink TV and Beyond Entertainment feature documentary with principal production funding from Screen Australia and Australian Broadcasting Corporation in association with Screen NSW.

Constance Wu-Starring ‘East Bay’ Picked Up by Level 33 for North America, World Sales (EXCLUSIVE) - variety.com - USA - Canada - North Korea - city San Jose
variety.com
23.04.2024

Constance Wu-Starring ‘East Bay’ Picked Up by Level 33 for North America, World Sales (EXCLUSIVE)

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “East Bay,” a dark comedy film starring “Fresh Off the Boat” and “Crazy Rich Asians” star Constance Wu, has been picked up for North American distribution and world sales by Level 33 Entertainment. The film won the audience award last year at the Cinequest Film and Creativity festival in San Jose. Level 33 plans to release it next month in North American theaters, ahead of a later digital outing. Wu portrays a close friend of a man who feels let down by his immigrant parents and, after a string of personal and professional humiliations, is forced to accept that he is a failure.

Mckenna Grace Sets Starring Role in YA Love Story ‘Everything I Never Did’ (EXCLUSIVE) - variety.com - Australia - county Scott - county Jack
variety.com
23.04.2024

Mckenna Grace Sets Starring Role in YA Love Story ‘Everything I Never Did’ (EXCLUSIVE)

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Mckenna Grace, the in-demand actor who appeared in “I, Tonya” and “The Handmaid’s Tale” and recently starred in “Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire,” is set to lead the upcoming film “Everything I Never Did.” The young adult-targeted picture is written by screenwriters D.J. McPherson and Scott Taylor and will be directed by Australia’s Jeremy Sims (“Last Cab to Darwin”).

Korea Box Office: ‘Kung Fu Panda 4’ Retains Lead, as ‘Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire’ Melts - variety.com - South Korea - North Korea
variety.com
23.04.2024

Korea Box Office: ‘Kung Fu Panda 4’ Retains Lead, as ‘Ghostbusters: Frozen Empire’ Melts

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief ‘Kung Fu Panda 4’ retained its lead at the top of the South Korean box office on what was the quietest cinema-going weekend in more than a year. The animated franchise movie held up reasonably. It maintained a nearly 44% market share, dropped only 32% week-on-week and was untroubled by competition from new releases. The film earned $1.91 million between Friday and Sunday, according to data from Kobis, the tracking service operated by the Korean Film Council (Kofic).

Amazon’s miniTV Adds 200 Shows Dubbed in Tamil and Telugu for Indian Regional Users - variety.com - India - North Korea - Turkey
variety.com
19.04.2024

Amazon’s miniTV Adds 200 Shows Dubbed in Tamil and Telugu for Indian Regional Users

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Amazon’s free-of charge, ad-supported streaming platform that is only available in India, miniTV, is expanding its reach within the country. It is adding 200 shows for regional audiences and speakers of Tamil and Telugu. The new line-up of dubbed titles includes marquee and fan-favourite Hindi originals including “Hunter- Tootega Nahi Todega,” “Physics Wallah,” action-packed patriotic series “Rakshak- India’s Braves,” and young romance series “Highway Love.” Hollywood titles dubbed into Tamil and Telugu will include library titles “Twilight,” “Now You See Me,” the “Hunger Games” series, the “Step Up” franchise films and “Red.” miniTV will also upload Korean, Turkish and Mandarin shows dubbed in Tamil and Telugu languages.

Why David Shin’s Disney+ Crime Thriller ‘House of the Owl’ Is a Test Run for Hollywood-Style Recurring Series Made in Japan - variety.com - Japan - Tokyo - North Korea - county Patrick - Hong Kong - Taiwan
variety.com
18.04.2024

Why David Shin’s Disney+ Crime Thriller ‘House of the Owl’ Is a Test Run for Hollywood-Style Recurring Series Made in Japan

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief While multiple Korean TV series have connected with global audiences, Japan’s production committees, terrestrial broadcasters and talent agencies have kept their TV industry tightly focused on a local market. Anime and variety have long remained the Japanese TV industry’s best-known exports, while the premium end of the spectrum has largely escaped Japanese producers.

Seven West Media CEO James Warburton Makes Immediate Exit, Following Scandal - variety.com - Australia - city Canberra
variety.com
18.04.2024

Seven West Media CEO James Warburton Makes Immediate Exit, Following Scandal

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief James Warburton, MD and CEO of Seven West Media, one of Australia’s largest media conglomerates, has resigned following a series of scandals. He was scheduled to depart the company in December, but now exits with immediate effect following a board meeting on Thursday. In a filing to the Australian Stock Exchange, Seven West said that Jeff Howard, currently its chief finance officer, will take over as MD and CEO with effect from Friday.

Comic Book Platforms Marvel Unlimited and Viz Manga Extend Cooperation Into Digital Promotion (EXCLUSIVE) - variety.com - Japan - Tokyo
variety.com
16.04.2024

Comic Book Platforms Marvel Unlimited and Viz Manga Extend Cooperation Into Digital Promotion (EXCLUSIVE)

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Online comic book platforms Marvel Unlimited and VIZ Manga are to begin cross-promotions that are aimed at expanding fandom in the genre. The move follows the 2022-23 collaboration between Marvel Comics and Viz Media that extended stories from the Marvel comics universe into the Japanese manga format, in a handful of titles. Subscribers to the VIZ Manga digital service can now access titles featuring fan-favorite characters including “Deadpool: Samurai,” “Wolverine: Snikt!,” “Spider-Man: Fake Red” and “Marvel’s Secret Reverse.” Later in the year other Marvel-manga crossover titles will be added including “Spider-Man: Octo-Girl” and “X-Men: The Manga: Remastered.” To launch their cross-platform cooperation, VIZ Manga and Marvel Unlimited will offer each other’s U.S.

Disney Expands 2025 Korean Drama Slate With ‘Low Life’ Webtoon Adaptation - variety.com - China - South Korea - North Korea
variety.com
15.04.2024

Disney Expands 2025 Korean Drama Slate With ‘Low Life’ Webtoon Adaptation

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Disney has confirmed that Korean webtoon-to-screen adaptation “Low Life” is poised to begin production. When valuable treasure is discovered off the coast of Korea, the country’s biggest degenerates come crawling out of the woodwork in the hope of striking it big. Word spreads after a fisherman got lucky and kept a piece of the booty for himself.

Fungi Feature ‘Follow the Rain’ Boarded by Escapade Media - variety.com - Australia
variety.com
15.04.2024

Fungi Feature ‘Follow the Rain’ Boarded by Escapade Media

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Escapade Media has come on board to take international sales rights to ‘Follow the Rain,’ a feature-length documentary about unknown species of mushroom that has enjoyed theatrical release in its native Australia. The film is directed and produced by Catherine Marciniak and follows Marciniak and Stephen Axford, her partner in production company Planet Fungi, as they explore forests and wetlands charting some of the millions of undocumented forms of mushroom, fungus and mycelium.

Stormy Daniels Documentary Being Launched by Blue Ant Media – Global Bulletin - variety.com - New York - USA - Vietnam - Malaysia - Singapore - city Ho Chi Minh City
variety.com
15.04.2024

Stormy Daniels Documentary Being Launched by Blue Ant Media – Global Bulletin

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “Stormy,” a documentary about former porn star Stormy Daniels, has been picked up by Blue Ant Studios for international distribution. The launch was announced on Monday, the same day that former U.S. president Donald Trump begins a criminal trial in New York for allegedly covering up hush money payments to Daniels. “Stormy,” offered as two one-hour episodes or a two-hour feature, is produced by Emmy-nominated producers Erin Lee Carr (“I Love You,” “Now Die: The Commonwealth v.

‘The Goldfinger’ Snags Six Prizes at Hong Kong Film Awards - variety.com - China - Centre - Berlin - Hong Kong - city Hong Kong
variety.com
15.04.2024

‘The Goldfinger’ Snags Six Prizes at Hong Kong Film Awards

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Crime drama “The Goldfinger” was the numerical winner at the Hong Kong Film Awards, where it won six prizes on Sunday. But it missed out on the best film prize, which went to box office record breaker “A Guilty Conscience.” “The Goldfinger,” a retro financial thriller starring Tony Leung Chiu-wai and Andy Lau Tak-wah, earned a slew of technical award (cinematography, art direction, costume and make up, sound design and visual effects) as well as the lead actor prize for Leung. Two films took three prizes each: “In Broad Daylight,” an investigation into abuse at a care home, and “Mad Fate,” Soi Cheang’s grungy examination of superstition in the city.

China Box Office: ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Reaches $93 Million After Second Weekend - variety.com - China - Japan
variety.com
15.04.2024

China Box Office: ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Reaches $93 Million After Second Weekend

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Oscar-winning Japanese animated fantasy “The Boy and the Heron” held on to top spot at the mainland China box office to record a second weekend win. The film, which opened triumphantly on April 3, in time for a family-oriented long weekend, fell steeply in its second, non-holiday, frame. It earned $12.8 million (RMB90.6 million), according to data from consultancy firm Artisan Gateway.

Korea Box Office: ‘Kung Fu Panda 4’ Opens on Top, Deposes ‘Exhuma’ - variety.com - South Korea - Japan
variety.com
15.04.2024

Korea Box Office: ‘Kung Fu Panda 4’ Opens on Top, Deposes ‘Exhuma’

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “Kung Fu Panda 4” took top spot at the South Korean box office becoming the film that finally pushed aside local champion “Exhuma,” which had dominated for seven consecutive weeks. But it was an understated victory, rather than a triumphant one, and the exhibition industry’s $5.6 million nationwide haul was among the lowest scoring weekends this year. “Kung Fu Panda 4” earned $2.81 million between Friday and Sunday with a 50.1% market share. Over its full five day run since a Wednesday opening, it enjoyed a $5.96 million total. “Exhuma” slipped to second place in its eight weekend of release.

Jeonju Film Festival Sets 10 Films for Competition – Global Bulletin - variety.com - Italy - South Korea - North Korea - county Lee
variety.com
12.04.2024

Jeonju Film Festival Sets 10 Films for Competition – Global Bulletin

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Korea’s second largest generalist film event the Jeonju International Film Festival has set eight fiction films by first or second-time feature directors, for its main competition. They are “Cu Li Never Cries,” by Pham Ngoc Lan; “Junkyard Dog,” by Jean-Baptiste Durand, “La Palisiada,” by Philip Sotnychenko; “My Endless Numbered Days,” by Shaun Neo; “Oxygen Station,” by Ivan Tymchenko; “Practice,” by Laurens Perol; “The Major Tones,” by Ingrid Pokropek; and “The Permanent Picture,” by Laura Ferres. Additionally, two documentary features also compete: “After the Snowmelt,” directed by Lo Yi-Shan and “Kix,” by Balint Revesz and David Mikulan. The COVID-pandemic continues to affect filmmaking and festival selection, organizers said. “Even films planned to be made beforehand had to extend their production period due to the pandemic, and many works highlighted the limitations of the production environments, such as smaller cast numbers and minimal locations,” said chief programmer Chun Jinsu. The festival runs May 1-10 in Jeonju, a major town on South Korea’s west coast.

‘I, the Executioner,’ Cannes Midnight Screening Thriller, Picked Up by Korea’s CJ ENM - variety.com - Spain - South Korea
variety.com
12.04.2024

‘I, the Executioner,’ Cannes Midnight Screening Thriller, Picked Up by Korea’s CJ ENM

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Rights to “I, The Executioner,” which will premiere as a Midnight Screening at the Cannes Film Festival this year, have been picked up by South Korea’s CJ ENM. The crime-action film directed by Ryu Seung-wan (also written Ryoo Seung-wan) is a sequel to Ryu’s 2015 hit “Veteran” and in Korea goes by the title “Veteran 2.” Few details of the story have yet been disclosed, but CJ describes the film as “combining Ryu’s trademark action with observations and messages about social change.” Ryu last year enjoyed major box office success with crime comedy “Smugglers.” Hwang Jung-min, who recently enjoyed box office success in “12.12: The Day,” reprises his role from “Veteran.” He is joined in the sequel by Jung Hae-in (“Tune in for Love”) as a new member of the film’s Violent Crime Investigation Squad. “I, The Executioner” was produced by Filmmaker R & K, the production shingle owned by Ryu and his wife Kang Hae-jung, with CJ ENM as financier and local and international distributor. CJ ENM expects to give the film a theatrical release in South Korea at an unspecified date in the second half of the year. The original “Veteran” had its international premiere in a sidebar of the 2015 Toronto festival, was named best film at the Sitges genre festival in Spain.

Rachel Perkins Appointed Chair of Australian Film, TV School – Global Bulletin - variety.com - Australia - Las Vegas - India - city Mumbai
variety.com
11.04.2024

Rachel Perkins Appointed Chair of Australian Film, TV School – Global Bulletin

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Rachel Perkins has been appointed as chair of the Australian Film, Television and Radio School (AFTRS) council for a period of three years. She follows previous chairs Russell Howcroft and Debra Richards. AFTRS is Australia’s leading specialist education, training and research institution, supporting excellence in Australian screen and audio storytelling. “Rachel is one of Australia’s leading storytellers, particularly when it comes to First Nations stories,” said Minister for the Arts, Tony Burke. A graduate of AFTRS, writer, director and producer, Perkins founded Blackfella Films, which has gone onto become one of Australia’s leading production companies.

Jackson Yee’s TFBoys to Get Global Boost From Universal Music Deal - variety.com - China
variety.com
10.04.2024

Jackson Yee’s TFBoys to Get Global Boost From Universal Music Deal

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief TF Entertainment, the company behind Chinese pop sensations TFBoys and Teens in Times (aka TNT), has struck a strategic alliance with Universal Music Greater China. The deal includes global digital distribution for TF Entertainment’s roster of talent and the targeting of markets outside Mainland China. The objective is to leverage parent group Universal Music Group’s global distribution capabilities and marketing network to elevate Chinese pop’s global prominence. TF Entertainment was founded in 2009 and developed a trainee system to cultivate idol groups within Chinese pop.

Taiwan’s Showtime Adds Fleet of ScreenX Theaters – CinemaCon (EXCLUSIVE) - variety.com - Las Vegas - Taiwan - city Taipei
variety.com
09.04.2024

Taiwan’s Showtime Adds Fleet of ScreenX Theaters – CinemaCon (EXCLUSIVE)

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Showtime, Taiwan’s second largest cinema chain, is to open eight ScreenX auditoriums across the island. Developed by Korea’s CJ group of companies, ScreenX is cinema technology that expands specially selected sequences of a film onto the left-and-right-side walls of the auditorium, creating a 270-degree panoramic experience. The first four theaters are expected to be completed before summer this year in northern, central and southern Taipei. The others will be completed by mid-2025. Among the first sites, Taichung Wenxin will bring both the inaugural ScreenX auditorium and the first EWD laser 4K projection system to Taiwan.

‘Death in Paradise’ Australia Spinoff Sets Female Lead, Starts Production – Global Bulletin - variety.com - Australia - France - Ireland - county Wake
variety.com
09.04.2024

‘Death in Paradise’ Australia Spinoff Sets Female Lead, Starts Production – Global Bulletin

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Filming has begun on “Return to Paradise,” an Australian spin-off series of the global hit murder mystery franchise “Death in Paradise.” With filming in locations across Sydney and the Illawarra coastal region, the six-part whodunit is produced by BBC Studios Productions Australia with Red Planet Pictures for the ABC in association with the BBC. The BBC will screen the series on BBC One and iPlayer in the U.K.

Travis Fimmel Returning to Australian Crime Drama ‘Black Snow,’ Drops First Images - variety.com - Australia
variety.com
09.04.2024

Travis Fimmel Returning to Australian Crime Drama ‘Black Snow,’ Drops First Images

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “Vikings” star Travis Fimmel reprises his role as Detective Cormack in a second season of Australian mystery drama series “Black Snow.” The six-part series is now shooting in Queensland, Australia, and has unveiled first-look images. “Australian film and television have never been stronger. Now, with the addition of streaming networks and their reach, I’m so proud that our local productions and their hard work can be recognized not only here, but around the world,” said Fimmel in a prepared statement. The first season of “Black Snow” was nominated as ‘most outstanding drama series’ at the 2023 Logie Awards and received two nominations at the 2024 AACTA Awards – for best drama series and best lead actor in a drama, for Fimmel.

Canneseries: China’s ‘To the Wonder’ Is a Politically Correct Tale of Multicultural Romance and Self-Discovery - variety.com - China - Berlin - region Xinjiang
variety.com
08.04.2024

Canneseries: China’s ‘To the Wonder’ Is a Politically Correct Tale of Multicultural Romance and Self-Discovery

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief China’s video streamers, much like their counterparts in the west, have passed their peak growth phase and have been forced to refocus their efforts on achieving profitability. In the case of IQiyi, which is a subsidiary of tech giant Baidu but has its own stock market listing on the NASDAQ, that transition has meant reduced content spending and a more rigorous approach to quality and investment in winning shows. “To the Wonder,” which debuted on Sunday in competition at Canneseries, is a product of that less-is-more approach.

‘Snow in Midsummer’ and ‘Sons’ Take Firebird Awards at Hong Kong Film Festival – Global Bulletin - variety.com - China - Italy - Austria - Portugal - Malaysia - Hong Kong - city Hong Kong
variety.com
08.04.2024

‘Snow in Midsummer’ and ‘Sons’ Take Firebird Awards at Hong Kong Film Festival – Global Bulletin

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “Snow in Midsummer,” which quietly probes the 1969 massacre of Malaysian Chinese during post-election turmoil, was named the winner of the best film for young cinema competition (Chinese-language) at the Hong Kong International Film Festival. Liang Ming was named best director for “Carefree Days,” while the film’s female lead Lyu Xingchen collected the best actress award.

China Box Office: ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Earns $73 Million in Five-Day Opening - variety.com - France - China - South Korea - Japan
variety.com
08.04.2024

China Box Office: ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Earns $73 Million in Five-Day Opening

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Oscar-winning Japanese animation film “The Boy and the Heron” earned a chart-topping $34.9 million between Friday and Sunday at the mainland China box office. Over its full five-day opening run, it took an even more spectacular $73 million. China was the last major territory to play the Studio Ghibli-produced fantasy in cinemas – it released in its native Japan in July and is imminently headed to streaming in many other territories – but that did not stop Chinese audiences from lapping it up. While most films release in China on a Friday, “The Boy and the Heron” was given a Wednesday outing in order to capture momentum from the Thursday-to-Saturday Qingming public holiday. Consultancy firm Artisan reports that it earned RMB248 million ($34.9 million) over the conventional Friday-to-Sunday weekend.

Korea Box Office: ‘Exhuma’ Hits $80 Million, Scores Seventh Weekend Win - variety.com - South Korea - Japan - North Korea
variety.com
08.04.2024

Korea Box Office: ‘Exhuma’ Hits $80 Million, Scores Seventh Weekend Win

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Without significant new challengers, spooky Korean drama “Exhuma” held on at the top of the South Korea box office chart for the seventh consecutive weekend. Its cumulative passed the symbolic $80 million mark. The lack of strong new release titles also meant that aggregate weekend box office in Korea slipped to a lowly $5.59 million. The Choi Min-sik-starring “Exhuma” dropped roughly 50% week-on-week to record $1.59 million between Friday and Sunday, and a 28% market share, according to data from Kobis, the tracking service operated by the Korean Film Council (Kofic).

CinemaCon: Worldwide Box Office Headed for Marginal Decline in 2024, Says Report - variety.com - China - USA - Las Vegas
variety.com
07.04.2024

CinemaCon: Worldwide Box Office Headed for Marginal Decline in 2024, Says Report

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Worldwide box office is headed for a marginal decline of 3% in 2024, a setback that follows three years of recovery from a pandemic era low in 2020. Gower Street Analytics, a distribution and exhibition industry consultancy, forecasts that worldwide box office this year will aggregate at $32.3 billion, down by more than $1 billion from the $33.9 billion earned in 2023. “A $32.3 billion global box office in 2024 would represent an approximate 5% decrease year-on-year (a 3% decrease at current exchange rates) from 2023. The 2024 revised estimate is 18% lower than an average of the last three pre-pandemic years (2017-2019),” Gower Street said. The forecast comes on the eve of CinemaCon, the annual National Association of Theater Owners convention, being held in Las Vegas April 8-11. While Gower Street’s forecast is for a marginal decline, it actually represents a more than $1 billion improvement on its previous $31.5 million forecast for 2024.

Drugs and Prostitutes Alleged at Australia’s Seven Network in Bruce Lehrmann Defamation Trial; Broadcaster ‘Appalled’ by Claims - variety.com - Australia - Thailand - city Canberra
variety.com
05.04.2024

Drugs and Prostitutes Alleged at Australia’s Seven Network in Bruce Lehrmann Defamation Trial; Broadcaster ‘Appalled’ by Claims

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Australia’s Seven West Media and its Seven network may risk reputational damage following Federal Court revelations in Sydney on Thursday and Friday. The defamation case was brought by former Liberal Party political aide Bruce Lehrmann against Network Ten and journalist Lisa Wilkinson. It does not directly involve Seven.

Cannes Critics Week Sets Rodrigo Sorogoyen, Spanish Director, as Jury President - variety.com - Spain - France - city Stockholm
variety.com
05.04.2024

Cannes Critics Week Sets Rodrigo Sorogoyen, Spanish Director, as Jury President

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief The Critics Week section of the Cannes film festival has set Spanish director Rodrigo Sorogoyen as the president of the jury for its 63rd edition. Sorogoyen is known for films including “Stockholm” in 2013, “The Candidate” in 2018, and “The Beasts” from 2022.

China Box Office: ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Flies Past ‘Godzilla x Kong’ in $35 Million Midweek Holiday Debut - variety.com - China - Hollywood - Japan
variety.com
04.04.2024

China Box Office: ‘The Boy and the Heron’ Flies Past ‘Godzilla x Kong’ in $35 Million Midweek Holiday Debut

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Oscar-winning Japanese animation “The Boy and the Heron” opened its wings in mainland Chinese theaters in midweek and soared to the top of the box office. Data from multiple local tracking sources show the Miyazaki Hayao-directed fantasy-adventure accounting for more than half of all cinema revenues on both Wednesday and Thursday. On Wednesday it garnered $13.8 million, according to estimates from Ent Group. By 6.30pm on Thursday, ticket sales firm Maoyan was showing the title as having grown its two-day running total to RMB254 million or $35.2 million. While films mostly open on Fridays in China, “The Boy and the Heron” was given a Wednesday outing in order to play into the three-day Qingming public holiday.

David Wenham to Star in ‘SPIT,’ Sequel to Australian Hit Film ‘Gettin’ Square’ - variety.com - Australia
variety.com
04.04.2024

David Wenham to Star in ‘SPIT,’ Sequel to Australian Hit Film ‘Gettin’ Square’

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief “Lord of the Rings,” “Elvis” and “Faraway Downs” star David Wenham is to reprise one of other his best-known roles in upcoming feature “SPIT.” The picture is a sequel to 2003 comedy crime thriller “Gettin’ Square,” in which Wenham played Johnny ‘Spit’ Spitteri, a recently-released ex-convict and Sam Worthington (“Avatar”) played an older brother trying to keep the kid out of trouble. Production of “SPIT” has got underway in Gold Coast and Brisbane, Queensland and will continue through May. The new film is directed by ‘Gettin’ Square” and “The Railway Man” director Jonathan Teplitzky, from a screenplay by Queensland-based writer and lawyer Christopher Nyst. It is produced by Trish Lake of Queensland-based Freshwater Pictures alongside Greg Duffy, Felicity McVay and Wenham. It received major production investment from Screen Australia with local distribution by Transmission Films and international rights sales managed by Moviehouse Entertainment.

‘Top End Bub’ Series Set as TV Sequel to Hit Australian Film - variety.com - Australia - New Zealand - Germany - county Wayne - county Blair
variety.com
03.04.2024

‘Top End Bub’ Series Set as TV Sequel to Hit Australian Film

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Romantic comedy series “Top End Bub” will begin production next month in Australia as a sequel to hit 2019 feature film “Top End Wedding.” Stars Miranda Tapsell (“The Sapphires”) and Gwilym Lee (“Bohemian Rhapsody”) will reprise their roles. The series is created, executive produced and written by “Top End Wedding” writers Joshua Tyler and Tapsell and produced by Goalpost Pictures.

Korea’s YG Entertainment Sets Yang Min-seok as CEO, Gives BabyMonster Official Debut – Global Bulletin - variety.com - Thailand - Japan - Indonesia - Singapore - Taiwan - Philippines
variety.com
03.04.2024

Korea’s YG Entertainment Sets Yang Min-seok as CEO, Gives BabyMonster Official Debut – Global Bulletin

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief YG Entertainment, the firm behind K-pop sensation Blackpink, has appointed Yang Min-seok as its new, sole CEO. The younger brother of company founder Yang Hyun-sun, he was previously joint CEO with Hwang Bo-kyun. The announcement was made shortly after YG’s annual shareholder meeting that closed the books on a year in which revenues climbed 65% to $430 million. The firm, which recently denied that it had paid $30 million to retain its position with Blackpink (but saw the girl group’s individual members sign personal representation contracts with other agencies) is busily launching BabyMonster, another all-female act that is seen in some circles as a successor to Blackpink. BabyMonster, which was formed late last year through reality TV show “Last Evaluation 2023,” is a seven part group with members from Korea, Thailand and Japan.

Japan-Taiwan BL Series ‘At 25.00 in Akasaka’ Set by TV Tokyo and GagaOOLala - variety.com - Thailand - Japan - Tokyo - Taiwan
variety.com
03.04.2024

Japan-Taiwan BL Series ‘At 25.00 in Akasaka’ Set by TV Tokyo and GagaOOLala

Patrick Frater Asia Bureau Chief Leading Japanese broadcaster TV Tokyo and Taiwan-based LGBT streaming platform GagaOOLala will this month release “At 25.00 in Akasaka,” a live-action drama series in the popular Boys Love (BL) genre. Based on a popular manga by Natsuno Hiroko, the underlying comic has sold over 1.2 million copies. The series explores the romance between a renowned actor and an aspiring talent, cast as leads in a BL drama that wins the hearts of audiences worldwide.

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