SciFi Japan
    Festival runs August 14th - 21st, 2008 Source: Asian Film Festival of Dallas Special Thanks to Mike Keller From the AFFD... Just like the soaring temperatures that hit the metroplex this time every year, moviegoers can once again look forward to screaming-hot movie options at the 7th Annual Asian Film Festival of Dallas, scheduled from August 14th - 21st, 2008 at Landmark`s Magnolia Theater. With more than 40 films to choose from, movie fans can beat the heat with 8 days of film from 10 countries, including Japan, China, Korea and the Philippines. The AFFD is more than just a film festival - it`s a combination of cinema and cultural experiences that help spread the importance of diversity among Asian Internationals, Asian-Americans and other groups in our community. With entries that range from traditional and lyrical beauty to the bleeding edge of modern film expression, the AFFD

    News and Photos from Director Kiyotaka Taguchi Author: Norman England and Keith Aiken Source: G-Project Additional Translations by Oki Miyano A SciFi JAPAN EXCLUSIVE SPOILER WARNING: This article contains plot details and images from a new movie. While serving in an overseas war zone, a Japanese Self Defense Forces unit is ambushed in a guerilla attack. Only the soldiers Goda and Garaemon survive the assault. The two men vow that they will find a way to prevent more soldiers from dying needlessly on the battlefield. Years later, Garaemon has developed a body reinforcing agent that may accomplish that goal. But when his lab is attacked by a group of industrial spies, Garaemon injects the experimental serum into his own body. Things go terribly wrong, and the scientist is transformed into a vicious giant monster. Garaemon rampages through Tokyo. The JSDF attacks with

    Korean Studio Announces the Chinese Version of the Monster Sequel Author: Kim Song-ho (Loomis) Source: Chungeorahm Film official press release, various The Korean production company Chungeorahm Film announced on June 25, 2008 (Korean date) that it will produce a `Chinese version` of the sequel to THE HOST (Gwoemul). This is a separate project from the already-announced THE HOST 2. The new film is a localized version, so it will feature Chinese performers and be produced in the Chinese language. According to the press release, the Chinese version is a joint production of Chungeorahm and Stoneman Films, Ltd., a Chinese company. Ning Hao, an up-and-coming director of China and also CEO of Stoneman Films, will direct. Ning is the well-known director of MONGOLIAN PING PONG (Lu cao di, 2005) and CRAZY STONE (Fengkuang de shitou, 2006). He was born in 1977 in the Yellow River valley Shanxi

    CURZON MIDNIGHT MOVIES Presents an Exclusive UK Preview of the J-Horror Film Source: Curzon Cinemas Official Movie Site: EXTE-Movie Special Thanks to Nadia Attia The new J-Horror with brains…and HAIR! Chiaki Kuriyama stars as Yuko, a budding hair stylist who is unaware that the hair extensions she uses on her clients are actually cursed. and are out for revenge. A satirical horror that delivers both in scares and laughs, this film marks director Sion Sono as one to watch. See it before the inevitable US remake! This past February, the Curzon Cinema in Soho, London launched a successful series of late night cult film events. The next event for CURZON MIDNIGHT MOVIES will be a special exclusive preview screening of the Japanese horror movie EXTE: HAIR EXTENSIONS (Ekusute, 2007) on Friday, June 27. EXTE is the latest film from Shion Sono, the prolofic director of SUICIDE

    Director Takashi Yamazaki Discusses Godzilla’s Cameo Appearance in ALWAYS 2Author: Keith Aiken Source: NTV (Nippon Television Network), ASCII Media Works, Midnight Eye, various Official Site: Always 2Translations by Oki Miyano Special Thanks to James Ballard In November 2005, Japanese moviegoers flocked to see the drama ALWAYS- SUNSET ON THIRD STREET (Always San-Chome no Yuhi). Adapted from the popular manga by Ryohei Saigan, the film told the story of the residents of Third Street— a small Tokyo neighborhood in late 1958. The rosy, nostalgic tale was a tremendous box office success that triggered a national fad for the “Showa Era” of Japan (1926-1989). ALWAYS was also a critical hit, winning 33 awards domestically and internationally, including Picture of the Year, Director of the Year, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actor, and Best Supporting Actress at the 2006 Japan Academy Prize. The cast and crew

    The X From Outer Space Returns in 2008! Author: James M. Ballard Sources:, The monster Guilala from Shochiku`s bizarre 1967 kaiju feature THE X FROM OUTER SPACE (Uchuu Daikaijuu Girara) will return more than 40 years later in the new feature film GUILALA`S COUNTERATTACK: THE TOUYAKO SUMMIT ONE-SHOT CRISIS (Girara-no Gyakushuu Touyako Samitto Kiki Ippatsu, 2008), Shochiku announced at their head office in Tsukiji, Tokyo on January 29th. In this new disaster movie, the world`s greatest minds gather at the G8 summit in Toyako, Hokkaido, while a Chinese space craft crashes in the outskirts of Sapporo carrying the spores of the space monster Guilala. At the press conference, the film`s director Minoru Kawasaki commented that "THE X FROM OUTER SPACE was a production that took advantage of the `kaiju boom` in those days, and although it was a legendary monster for enthusiasts, [Guilala] was a

    Korean studio reveals more details for the sequel Author: Kim Song-ho (Loomis) Source: Chungeorahm Film official press release, various Chungeorahm, the production company of THE HOST (Gwoemul, 2006), has provided more plot details and an early conceptual sketch from the upcoming sequel. According to the official press release and reports from various Korean news sites, THE HOST 2 will take place in Cheonggyecheon (or Cheonggye Stream), a creek running through the downtown of Seoul that leads to the Han River. Cheonggyecheon was covered with concrete between the 1950s and 70s to build a road, but restored in 2005. The story is set in 2003 when the restoration was at an early stage. Principal characters, such as street vendors, demolition contractors, and policemen are involved with the disorder and conflict caused by the restoration— one of which is, or course, the monsters from underground. The script, written by

    Official Site: Silent Movie Theatre Beginning this weekend, the Silent Movie Theatre in West Hollywood is hosting seven consecutive Sundays of movies by director Takashi Miike. Ticket prices are $10.00 per film. The Silent Movie Theatre is located at 611 North Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90036. The theater phone number is (323) 655-2520. TAKASHI MIIKE: AUTEUR FOR HIRE Sundays in January/February at 9:30pm Takashi Miike is one of the most insanely prolific directors ever to pick up a camera. With almost 70 films to his credit, in just 15 years, this chameleonic filmmaker— a movie world rockstar— has worked in numerous genres, making everything from art house faves to low budget exploitation fare. Miike got his start as an assistant director to Shohei Imamura, working on the Palm d`Or winning film BLACK RAIN and later honed his skill in the Japanese straight-to-video boom of the

    A brief look at Noboru Iguchi’s upcoming film Author: Elliot Gay Source: Richard York, Twitch, Fangoria, Fever Dreams LLC, Gomorrahy Special Thanks to Keith Aiken and Sheldon Warnock Director Noboru Iguchi’s latest film effort, THE MACHINE GIRL (Kataude Mashingaru, THE ONE-ARMED MACHINE GIRL, 2008), will be seeing its theatrical release in Japan in 2008. Written by Iguchi himself, the film follows the story of Ami, a young high-school girl who sets out to take revenge on a gang of bullies after they kill her little brother. On the way to revenge, Ami loses an arm and replaces it with a high powered gun. Insane foes armed with their own bizarre weapons meet a violent end as Ami seeks vengeance for the deaths of those she cares about most. Noboru Iguchi is no stranger to horror films. Some of his previous credits include but are not limited to

    Producer provides new details on the upcoming sequel to the Korean monster hit Author: Kim Song-ho (Loomis) Source: Money Today Star News This past summer, the Korean studio Chungeorahm Film announced that they would be making a follow-up to their international success THE HOST (Gwoemul, 2006). Now Choi Yong-bae, CEO of Chungeorahm and producer of THE HOST has revealed some interesting tidbits for the upcoming sequel. He recently was interviewed by the Korean news site Star News and said that the screenplay for THE HOST 2 (Gwoemul 2) is currently being written. The scribe is Kang Full, a well-known comic artist of Korea. Choi told Star News that he expects the first draft of the screenplay to be submitted around December 20. The background of hiring Kang as the scribe was rooted from the fact that Chungeoram is producing two live-action adaptations of

    Where No Manga Has Gone Before Author: Michael Kure Source: TOKYOPOP I remember getting annoyed after STAR TREK ENTERPRISE met its demise on UPN. I wasn’t so upset about the series getting cancelled since most of the episodes I saw were either just plain lame or were so far removed from Star Trek that it wasn’t Star Trek. No, I was mad at the powers-that-be at Paramount who claimed that the low ratings for STAR TREK ENTERPRISE and box-office death of the STAR TREK NEMESIS movie proved that we, the fans, were tired of it all and that the franchise needed to rest and take a break for a couple years. I was, in fact, dying for more Star Trek. Good Star Trek. And I wasn’t alone. Thankfully,TOKYOPOP understood that and has published a pair of thick trade paperback books (each over 200 pages), featuring a

    New SPFX drama to re-invent image of a "hero" Author: James Ballard Source: Press Release On December 5th, Japanese toy manufacturer Takara Tomy issued a press release announcing their participation in the production committee of a new special effects TV drama, TOMICA HERO RESCUE FORCE (Tomika Hiiroo Resukyuu Foosu), scheduled to be broadcast nationwide in Japan from Spring 2008. Until now, Japanese heroes have always been depicted fighting against aliens, monsters and other adversaries. But TOMICA HERO RESCUE FORCE aims to create a new image of a hero. An "exhilarating" action series, the Rescue Force will utilize many "Super Vehicles" and "Super Tools" (based on Takara Tomy`s toys) in order to rescue people in need. The team`s battles will be against an outbreak of super disasters all over the world. The idea behind the series is to communicate the important message of pollution and the state of

    Great New Travel Guide for Toy Collectors Author: Keith Aiken Source: CollectionDX Special Thanks to Joshua Bernard For decades, Godzilla, Ultraman, Gundam, and scores of other tokusatsu and anime characters have inspired an unending wave of merchandising and memorabilia. Toys and figures are particularly popular, with collectors in the United States constantly searching out items through stores and online retailers, or even taking pilgrimages to Japan to track down the new and the rare. For anyone planning such a trip to Japan— whether for the first time or the tenth— Super7 Media, Inc. has published the invaluable travel guide Tokyo Underground. The hardcover book was written by Brian Flynn, co-owner of Super7 (Super7 magazine, toy line, and San Francisco store) with the assistance of Joshua Bernard of the website CollectionDX, and full color photographs by Jeff Dey. Flynn, Bernard, and Dey provide information on more than 60

    Source: iMages from the iD Official Site: The iDol The following production notes were created by iMages from the iD for their Japanese science fiction film THE iDol. The text is © 2007 iMages from the iD. The entire THE iDol presskit (complete with photos, reviews and news articles) can be downloaded here. Mild-mannered Ken has a sweet tooth for figure collecting. On a visit to a local toy collectors shop he acquires a seemingly rare alien action figure that unknown to the young office worker is a creature of extraterrestrial origin! In no time Ken’s life is turned inside out as the somewhat silly looking alien alters his life by benevolently giving him everything he has ever dreamed of before callously taking it all back! SYNOPSIS A homeless man (Yukijiro Hotaru) returns to his makeshift shelter on the banks of Tokyo’s Tamagawa

    New SPFX series from the makers of GRANSAZER Author: James Ballard Official Website: KAWAII! JENNY (simply meaning "Cute! Jenny") is a new and somewhat bizarre late-night special effects series produced by Toho Co,. Ltd and Dream Planet Japan Inc. The project is headed by director Koichi Kawakita, who once lead as the director of special effects for some of Toho`s biggest FX productions, including all the Godzilla films produced between GODZILLA VS. BIOLLANTE (Gojira tai Biorante, 1989) and GODZILLA VS. DESTOROYAH (Gojira tai Desutoroia, 1995). After retiring from Toho, Kawakita established his own visual effects company, Dream Planet Japan, in January 2003. Since that time, Dream Planet Japan have collaborated with Toho on the TV series SUPER STAR GOD GRANSAZER (Chouseishin Guranseizaa, 2003), THE JUSTIRISERS (Genseishin Jasutiraizaa, 2004) and SUPER STAR FLEET SAZER-X (Chousei Kantai Seizaa Ekkusu, 2005), the movie SUPER STAR FLEET SAZER-X: FIGHT! WARRIORS

    Shusuke Kaneko is coming to Vancouver Canada for the Western Canadian premiere of his film DEATH NOTE Author: Stan Hyde Tokyo based film makers Norman England and Shusuke Kaneko will visit the city for events on Saturday October 20th and Sunday October 21st. The visit is sponsored by Leonard Wong and the Vancouver Comicon, Stan Hyde and Monster Attack Team - Canada, and the Churchill Film Studies program. On Saturday October 20th, there will be two film presentations at the Film Society Theatre at the University of British Columbia (U.B.C.). The Film Society Theatre is on the main floor near the south entrance to the U.B.C. Student Union Building, 6138 Student Union Boulevard in Vancouver. DEATH NOTE shows at 11:30. Admission for this showing will be $6.00 THE iDOL and DEATH NOTE will show at 2:15. Directors Norman England and Shusuke Kaneko will

    Spanish-speaking horror fans may enjoy Horrormanía: La Enciclopedia de cine de terror, a new book published in Madrid. From the press release... HORRORMANÍA: ENCICLOPEDIA DE CINE DE TERROR (Horrormania: The Encyclopedia of Terror Cinema) Author: José Manuel Serrano Cueto Editor: Alberto Santos (Madrid, Spain, 2007). 480 pages, SRP: 26.50 € (approximately $37.50 US) Horrormanía is the most complete horror cinema dictionary published in Spanish. The book features more than 2,500 references: actors (Bela Lugosi, Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney, Jr., Paul Naschy, Robert Englund, etc.), directors (John Carpenter, David Cronenberg, Jesús Franco, Dario Argento, James Whale...), musicians (Jerry Goldsmith, Ennio Morricone, Marco Beltrami...), writers (Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Anne Rice...), movies (THE EXORCIST, A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET, THE BIRDS, THE OTHERS...), critics (David J. Skal, Carlos Aguilar, Danilo Arona...), and magazines (Fangoria, Gorezone, Famous Monsters of Filmland...). Horrormanía includes all epochs and nationalities, with a good

    The Latest Info on What`s New and What`s Next for Younggu Art Entertainment Author: Loomis (Kim Song-ho) Source: Cine 21, KOBIS, Twitch, various Official Site: DRAGON DRAGON WARS: D-WAR, which opened on September 14 across America, has become this past summer one of the most successful blockbusters in Korea. Like many blockbusters, the opening record of DRAGON WARS was very strong from the start. As I reported in a SFJ news bite on August 2, the film, which opened on the previous day in Korea, attracted 417,298 admissions at 530 screens nationwide. It was quite close behind the first day record of THE HOST, which devoured 450,000 moviegoers on the first day and went on to swallow 13 million of them in 2006 to finally become the biggest hit in Korean film history. Rather naturally, critics didn`t like DRAGON WARS (this part is beginning to

    Based on the Popular Anime and Manga Series that have Taken Japan and North America by Storm Source: VIZ Media VIZ Pictures, an affiliate of VIZ Media LLC that focuses on Japanese live-action film distribution, has announced that it has licensed from Nippon Television (NTV) the North American theatrical and DVD distribution rights to the live-action feature film DEATH NOTE (Desu Noto) and its sequel, DEATH NOTE: THE LAST NAME (Desu Noto 2), based on the DEATH NOTE anime and manga series which have gained massive followings in Japan and North America. VIZ Media is the exclusive North American publisher and distributor of the DEATH NOTE anime and manga series. “We are extremely proud to announce the license of DEATH NOTE and DEATH NOTE: THE LAST NAME,” says Seiji Horibuchi President and CEO of VIZ Pictures. “Both films were smash hits in Japan

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