Within minutes of The Untamed airing, historical suspense drama The Longest Day in Chang’an 长安十二时辰 released twelve episodes without any warning. You can watch it here (update: now region-blocked; update 2: it will be up on Amazon, Youtube and Viki sometimes in July). Only the first four episodes are available for non-VIP members. I’m not sure when/if the rest will be available for non-VIP members.
The Climbers 攀登者 tells of the first successful Mt. Everest expedition by Chinese climbers. The star-studded cast includes Wu Jing, Zhang Ziyi, Zhang Yi, Jing Boran, Hu Ge, Wang Jingchun and Jackie Chan.
Directed by Daniel Lee (Time Raiders), the film is slated to premiere on September 30th.
- Ma Li will star in buddy comedy written by Karen McCullah (Legally Blond, Ella Enchanted, She’s the Man) . Eva Jin (Sophie’s Revenge) will direct. (Deadline)
The story centers on an unlikely pair of alpha females — Zoe, an American tech entrepreneur who relocates her company to China, and Maylin (Ma), a local female bodyguard who is hired to protect her. When Zoe’s life is threatened, the odd couple must put aside differences and join forces in order to survive.
- Gong Li signed on to star as volleyball legend Lang Ping in upcoming film. (SCMP)
- Hu Ge signed on to play coach and husband Jiang Shan in upcoming Li Na epic by Peter Chan. Poster below the cut. (Sina)
- Avengers and I, Tonya star Sebastian Stan will star in 355, the spy-thriller starring Fan Bingbing, Jessica Chastain, Lupita Nyong’o and Penélope Cruz. Marion Cortillard has dropped out due to personal reasons. Filming is expected to begin in July (The Hollywood Reporter)
The Sleuth of Ming Dynasty 成化十四年 stars Guan Hong (New Meteor Garden) as local officer Tang Fan, who must work together with secret police agent Sui Zhou (Fu Mengbo) to solve a series of murder cases that are all connected within a bigger conspiracy. Liu Yaoyuan costars as Wang Zhi, leader of the Eastern Depot.
Jackie Chan’s latest co-production, The Foreigner starring himself, Pierce Brosnan (007 franchise) , Liu Tao (The Advisors Alliance) and Katie Leung (Harry Potter), is directed by Martin Campbell (Casino Royale ), and is the first co-production that I actually want to watch.
See trailer to get what I mean:
Apologies for the really short round-up this time, but quality over quantity, right? Also, cats.
Hu Ge, who is currently filming for the suspense/spy drama The Disguiser (伪装者), shared a funny conversation with this cat. Keep in mind that the first character in “owl” (mao tou ying) is the same character for “cat” (mao).
Day 41 of The Disguiser—- Do you think that just because you won’t come down, that makes you an owl? Try flying, let me see.
It’s not enough to have a “Break-up guru?” We don’t know about box office figures yet, but upcoming movie The Break-up Artist 分手达人 will at least beat Yang Mi and Deng Chao’s movie to the screens, with a release date on June 6th. The movie uses “break-up” as its tagline, with a professional break-up artist who advertises “painless, ten-year guaranteed breakups” and reels in customers with her motto “Love, (then you’re) not fussy; No love, then break up!” Starring Fan Youchen (Van Fan) as the leading male, alongside Lin Peng as the female lead. The movie is produced by Jackie Chan.
Lin Peng’s character is the head of a break-up corporation in the film. She has also, in real life, started a sort of break-up corporation. She noted that “My company’s main enterprise is to safe-keep lovers’ mementos, and and also some of those unforgettable love stories. (1)” (Unsure how close her real company is to her fictional company, but you can still find a few more stills below the cut). (more…)
Riding on her foray into Hollywood, actress Fan Bingbing has retained her top-ranking position on the Forbes China Celebrity List. The list, which ranks the top 100 Chinese celebrities based on media exposure and income, sees more Mainland stars this year than ever before, with 60 (or so) of the listees basing their careers in Mainland China. Aside from a handful of actors, however, the biggest A-listers were overwhelming from Hong Kong or Taiwan, with 14 of the top 20 hailing from either of the two islands.
According to Forbes, Fan raked in nearly $20 million last year, putting her on par with Jennifer Aniston and Kanye West. The celebrity with the deepest pockets, Jay Chou, banked $25 million, around the same as Ben Affleck or Buffy creator and Avengers director Joss Whedon.
Despite the success of China’s biggest stars (this year’s top 10 took home $20 million more than last year’s), the overall earnings of the Celebrity 100 decreased for a second consecutive year, accumulating $65 million less wealth than the year before. However, the celebrities still managed to bring home more than half a billion dollars between them.
Actors and actresses made up the bulk of the list, accounting for 72 of the celebrities. It is common for celebrities to both sing and act in the Chinese entertainment industry, however, and several were identified as both.
Of the 29 singers and musical groups on the list, only six were from Mainland China. Of those six, five were involved in reality television singing competitions, with the exception of Hong Kong-launched Faye Wong.
Mainland Pianists Lang Lang and Li Yundi maintained their presence on the list, with Li (ranked 56) overtaking Lang Lang (57) for the first time.
New entrants to the list include Tiny Times author Guo Jingming who debuted at 27, model Zhang Liang of Where Are We Going, Dad? fame, and I Am A Singer runner-up G.E.M and Taiwanese actor Kai Ko just sneaking onto the list at 91 and 97 respectively.
Meanwhile, notable dropouts include Taiwanese film director Ang Lee (previously ranked 29), Hong Kong funnyman Stephen Chow (24), Jet Li (41), Nobel laureate Mo Yan (16), Olympic gold medalist Sun Yang (31), former Super Junior member Han Geng (87), and Super Girls Chris Li (15) and Jane Zhang (45).
|Rank||Name||Income (million RMB)||Income (million USD)||Income rank|
With the recent drama Prince of Orchid Hills/Lanling Wang coming to an end, most viewers have already reconciled themselves with Feng Shaofeng’s pretty-boy general. But on that note, which other actors might have made a convincing case for feminine beauty? (Sorry, Jet Li, and Jackie Chan. I can’t look at your female forms without wanting to laugh). Take a look below to see a selection cross-dressing men in Chinese entertainment. Wallace Huo dresses up as a Victorian lady (and puckers up for a kiss as his wuxia counterpart stares in disbelief). Nicolas Tse sports two braids and what looks like a schoolgirl outfit. Throw in Tony Leung, Du Haitao, Sammul Chan, Li Yugang, and Eason Chan, and it’s a field day – you’ll find a list of contenders to be the fairest of them all.
Although, if you’ll remember this music video (where Ma Tianyu, after being ditched by Deng Sha for her best friend on their wedding day, dresses up as a woman to seduce the said girlfriend, in the end winning back his own fiance/girlfriend…) you’ll know who the winner is before we even begin. Update: Chen Xiao (giving Ma Tianyu a run for his money), Kimi Qiao Renliang, and Jimmy Lin have joined our list of crossdressers. Du Haitao has a real schoolgirl costume, replete with little flowers in his hair… (more…)
- The world seems to be concerned that Hollywood films are no longer beating the domestic films in China, read about it from the New York Times and the Guardian. Is this a temporary phenomenon or a lasting trend?
How quickly do cultural works depreciate in value? The Slate does an economic analysis here.
- China’s new first lady quickly becomes style icon for a nation. This article on singer Peng Liyuan suggests that only those with “imperfect bodies,” such as Zhou Xun or Fan Bingbing (what flaws?) , will become fashion icons.
- Tennis player Li Na chosen for one of the seven covers of Times 100.
- Dreamworks Oriental, the Shanghai-based offshoot of the animation company that’s partly owned by the Shanghai Media Group, has announced Tibet Code as one of its first projects. More from Variety here. (more…)