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James Bond experiences piracy & premiere in China - The Hollywood Reporter 1/30/07


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  • James Bond experiences piracy & premiere in China - The Hollywood Reporter 1/30/07

    Premiere gives Bond team close-up on piracy

    Film unspools in China uncut, uncensored

    By Jonathan Landreth
    The Hollywood Reporter
    Jan 30, 2007

    BEIJING --The specter of piracy gatecrashed the lavish and groundbreaking Chinese premiere of "Casino Royale" in Beijing on Monday.

    In a twist of irony worthy of a 007 plot, Bond star Daniel Craig revealed at the event that he had been offered an illegal "Casino" DVD at a Beijing market without being recognized as the new James Bond.

    The film's director, Martin Campbell, revealed that he actually bought a pirated copy of his work, adding that he "hated" it. "You work so hard to be so pristine and then you see your work on a rotten copy and it is, to put it mildly, disappointing."

    Despite China's upcoming peak moviegoing season centered around the mid-February Lunar New Year holiday, Sony Pictures Entertainment will likely take a hit on earnings from "Casino" here in the face of rampant piracy in China.

    "Casino Royale" became the first James Bond movie ever to screen in China and premiered uncensored -- even restoring brief scenes of torture that Campbell said were cut for U.S. and U.K. viewers.

    Campbell, stars Craig and Eva Green, and producers Barbara Broccoli and Michael Wilson walked the red carpet through a gauntlet of foreign and local reporters gathered at one of the poshest hotels in the capital before leaving for a nearby multiplex to greet fans.

    While the 007 name is well-known in China because of widely available pirated copies, none of the previous 20 Bond films were submitted formally for examination by the state's communist censors, said Li Chow, Sony Pictures Entertainment general manager for China.

    China's censors passed "Casino" to play uncut on 470 prints in 1,000 theaters -- a record for an import. "This film is about fighting the common enemy of terrorism," producer Broccoli said, adding, "It is not political."

    Sony's Li said that dubbing most of the "Casino" prints into Chinese will help explain plot twists too complex for a country where much real-life news is censored.

    "When the villain in 'Casino' 'short sells' the airline stock, we needed to add a few Chinese words to make this concept clear," Li said, describing actor Mads Mikkelsen placing a big bet that an airline stock would drop after an unexpected explosion.

    Director Campbell said he was happy his film would be shown intact here.

    "Casino" is among the first big Hollywood films this year to be granted one of the 20 annual quota slots China uses to restrict foreign movies' influence and competition.

    Producer Wilson said the idea of making a Bond film in China was a good one, but couldn't imagine working in a system where piracy was so out of control.

    "Piracy is bad for foreign films but it's a disaster for Chinese films, so I think that's a point that the government should face up to," Wilson said, adding that he hopes "Casino" can do as well as "Mission: Impossible III" did here.
    "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006

  • #2
    Re: James Bond experiences piracy &amp; premiere in China - The Hollywood Reporter 1/30/0

    Craig attends China Bond premiere

    Craig (l) was joined by co-star Eva Green and director Martin Campbell

    007 actor Daniel Craig has attended the Beijing premiere of Casino Royale -
    the first Bond film to be shown in China.

    The British star, who is nominated for a Bafta for his performance, was joined at the event by his co-star Eva Green and director Martin Campbell.

    Craig said he felt "privileged" to show the movie "in a country that I've been eager to visit for a long time".

    Previous Bond films have fallen foul of government censors, though pirated DVDs are freely available.
    The film is to be shown at more than 1,000 cinemas - the widest release ever for a foreign film in China.

    Dubbing experts
    It will be screened unedited in all major Chinese cities and numerous smaller towns, said distributor Sony Pictures.
    Speaking at the premiere, held in the basement of a Beijing shopping centre, Craig said it was a "good thing" the film would be shown in the country "in its entirety".

    Craig (r) said he was "thrilled" to see the Forbidden City beforehand

    According to the Associated Press, the film's producers hired local experts to ensure the Chinese-language dubbing of its gambling scenes sounded authentic.

    Monday's event in Beijing will be followed on Tuesday by a second premiere in Shanghai.
    Craig has made good use of his time in the Chinese capital, taking the opportunity to visit the Forbidden City with his girlfriend, Satsuki Mitchell.
    "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006


    • #3
      Re: James Bond experiences piracy &amp; premiere in China - The Hollywood Reporter 1/30/0

      Bootleg DVD copies out of China are so far out of control. I don't see how they can stop it with such a monstrous sized population. There on the internet all the time. Check Ebay you will find them.
      1st Amendment-Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.


      • #4
        Re: James Bond experiences piracy &amp; premiere in China - The Hollywood Reporter 1/30/0

        Sweep nets 4.8 million pirated DVDs

        BEIJING, Feb. 9 (UPI) -- A two-month anti-piracy operation launched by the Motion Picture Association in Asia seized 4.8 million pirated discs, mostly in China, and made 870 arrests.

        The goal of the sweep in December and January was to protect sales of movie tickets, DVDs and VCDs during the Christmas and New Year period, Variety said.

        China led in the number of discs seized: almost 3 million during 393 raids that didn't include any arrests, MPA said. Malaysia had 658,614 pirated discs seized and 329 arrests made. Arrests in India totaled 118 during 110 raids. Taiwan had 119 people arrested with 388 optical disc burners taken. In Thailand, almost 300,000 discs were seized and 138 people arrested.
        "Over the past two-and-a-half years, the MPA's five biannual anti-piracy sweeps have resulted in close to 3,500 arrests and more than 26 million pirated optical discs seized," said Mike Ellis, MPA senior vice president and Asia-Pacific regional director.

        Another sweep will take place in the middle of the year.

        MPA said its studios lost $6.1 billion to worldwide piracy in 2005. Of that lost revenue, approximately $1.2 billion of it resulted from piracy in the Asian-Pacific region.
        "If you don't know how to draw, you don't belong in this building" - John Lasseter 2006


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