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  1. YumCha! Picks: 10 + 1 Films Based on TV Series
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    Made with a bigger budget, bigger cast and a bigger story, feature-length film has become a part of every successful television show's natural evolution. As the feature film adaptation of TVB drama Triumph in the Skies lands on home video, we take a look at several television shows that made successful transitions to cinema. 1. Boys Over Flowers: Final One of the most successful drama-to-movie adaptations ever, Boys Over Flowers: Final was part of a pan-Asian phenomenon based around Kamio Yoko's now-legendary manga series Hana Yori Dango, about a poor girl who falls for the king of all bratty rich kids. Starring Inoue Mao as the earnest, feisty Makino Tsukushi and Arashi's Matsumoto Jun as... [read more]
  2. 9th Asian Film Awards Preview: The Nominated Films
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    Since 2007, filmmakers and actors from across Asia have gathered every March for the Asian Film Awards (AFA). Now organized by the Asian Film Awards Academy – which was founded in 2013 by the Busan, Hong Kong and Tokyo Film Festivals – the AFA aims to celebrate and promote excellence in Asian cinema. This year's awards will be held soon on March 25, 2015 in Macau. With the 9th AFA ceremony only one week away, we take a closer look at the major films in contention this year. BLACK COAL, THIN ICE (China) Nominations: Best Film, Best Actor, Best Screenwriter, Best Cinematographer Diao Yi Nan's third directorial effort deftly combines film noir and social realism into a gritty and haunting... [read more]
  3. Romancing in Milkyway Image
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    Johnnie To and Milkyway Image may be best known to overseas film buffs for their action films. However, the prolific production company has also produced some of the most popular Hong Kong romance films of the past two decades. With the release of To and frequent collaborator Wai Ka Fai's latest romantic comedy blockbuster Don't Go Breaking My Heart 2, we take a look back at the Milkyway Image films that have moved the hearts of audiences everywhere. 1. Needing You (2000) Now fully ensconced as one of Hong Kong's all-time greatest on-screen couples, Andy Lau and Sammi Cheng began their partnership with 2000's Needing You, the highest-grossing Hong Kong film that year. The quintessential... [read more]
  4. YesAsia 2014 Bestsellers - TV Dramas
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    The below rankings are based on sales of television releases on from January 1 to December 31, 2014. Sales of all editions and versions of the same title are summed up to determine the total sales and ranking of each title. KOREAN TV BESTSELLERS No surprises here: the sensational drama You Who Came From the Stars starring Jeon Ji Hyun and Kim Soo Hyun came in first among TV dramas by a huge margin. It's followed by three other hot-topic dramas of the past two years – The Heirs, Master's Sun and I Hear Your Voice. Kim Soo Hyun's 2012 series Moon That Embraces the Sun sneaked back into the top ten thanks to his popularity and Gu Family Book stayed in the top sellers for the second... [read more]
  5. YesAsia 2014 Bestsellers - Japanese Music
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    After losing the top spot to Arashi on the album chart last year, Girls' Generation made a roaring comeback this year as compilation album The Best became the top J-pop album of 2014. B.A.P. and BTS fans also showed their love in a huge way in 2014, as each group has two singles in the singles chart. Korean artists are more popular than ever in J-pop, taking seven out of the top ten selling J-pop artists spots in 2014. Nevertheless, Arashi remained the best-selling J-pop artist of the year, thanks to the popularity of The Digitalian and their two concert releases in 2014. KAT-TUN and AKB48 also remained popular as the seventh and eighth best-selling J-pop artists of 2014, respectively.... [read more]
  6. YesAsia 2014 Bestsellers - Chinese Music
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    K-pop artists continued to dominate our C-pop album bestsellers' list in 2014 with EXO leading the way, claiming the top two, fourth and seventh spots. Coming in first is, of course, EXO's 2014 mini album Overdose, but XOXO, MAMA and Miracles in December also showed remarkable staying power. Following EXO are labelmates Super Junior-M, whose Swing comes in at number three. Veteran divas also had strong showings, with Sandy Lam, Sammi Cheng, Priscilla Chan and Stefanie Sun making big comebacks in the past year. Representing male crooners is Jacky Cheung, who celebrated his 30th anniversary in 2014 and managed to come in at number nine with Wake Up Dreaming, despite the album's late December... [read more]
  7. YesAsia 2014 Bestsellers - Movies
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    The below rankings are based on sales of movie releases on from January 1 to December 31, 2014. Sales of all editions and versions of the same title are summed up to determine the total sales and ranking of each title. TOP 10 MOVIES (OVERALL) 1. Monkey King 2. Firestorm 3. Grandmaster 4. White Storm 5. Special ID 6. Police Story 7. Rigor Mortis 8. Iceman 9. The Four II 10. Secretly Greatly BEST-SELLING CHINESE MOVIES 2014 was undoubtedly the year of Donnie Yen. The martial artist/actor starred in three of our top ten, including the top overall film, The Monkey King. Police action dramas starring big-name actors like Andy Lau, Louis Koo, Nick Cheung, Lau Ching Wan and Jackie Chan... [read more]
  8. YesAsia 2014 Bestsellers - Korean Music
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    In the usual breakdown of SM Entertainment artists and everyone else, Super Junior edged out labelmates EXO and Girls' Generation to take the top-selling K-pop album of 2014. SM artists occupied half of both the album and DVD top ten bestsellers, including the first three spots on both charts, and easily presided over the best-selling artists rankings. EXO was the top-selling artist overall for the second straight year, and Girls' Generation continued their unchallenged reign as the best-selling female artist. Among newer names, GOT7 and BTS stormed into the top ten in a big way. GOT7's debut mini-album closed the year as our fourth best-selling album of 2014 (their second mini-album just... [read more]
  9. YumCha! Picks: Best Asian Albums of 2014
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    On the last day of 2014, let's take some time to replay the music that made the year better. Here are our favorite Chinese, Korean and Japanese albums of 2014! BEST KOREAN ALBUMS
 2NE1 - Crush In the album's first track Crush, 2NE1 declares with an emphatic hair flip: "They love me cuz I'm real / They love me cuz I kill." Can't argue with that. 2NE1 is still bringing the fist-pumping girl power and addictive hooks, but this album also sees the YG creative team (mainly Teddy, Choice 37, Dee.P and Choi Pil Kang) wisely toning down the bombastic elements of previous records in favor of more approachable songs. We're able to hear a more mature and expressive 2NE1 in the slower songs as well as... [read more]
  10. YumCha! Picks: Best Asian Dramas of 2014
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    We dedicated way too many hours of our year to watching Asian dramas. Now here are our picks for the best Chinese, Korean and Japanese TV Dramas of 2014! BEST KOREAN DRAMAS Bad Guys Who needs good guys when Bad Guys are so much more charismatically destructive? OCN lives up to its genre reputation with this gritty crime action drama about a special unit of convicted killers tasked to hunt down criminals that elude police capture in exchange for sentence reduction. Bad guys teaming up to take down other bad guys is always entertaining, especially when the antiheroes are an interesting, terrifying bunch (Cho Dong Hyuk as a tortured contract killer, Ma Dong Seok as a gruff gangster with hard... [read more]
  11. YumCha! Picks: Best Asian Movies of 2014
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    With the year ending soon, we're taking a look back at our picks for the best Asian movies released on video in 2014! ROCKMAN'S PICKS The Attorney (Korea) I doubt that The Attorney would have the same impact on me if it had been released here in Hong Kong any other year. Arriving just months before the pinnacle of the social unrest movement in the city, Yang Woo Suk's rousing legal drama gave liberal-minded Hong Kongers the ideal image of an activist leader: a once indifferent man whose ideals for democracy and justice are awakened by his conscience. Though the fact-based story is essentially a fantasy disguised as mainstream activist cinema, The Attorney was absolutely the film that Hong... [read more]
  12. Another year, another MAMA! One of K-pop's biggest music events, the Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA) is fast turning into a Hong Kong year-end staple, with the award ceremony taking place in the city for the third year running. Now in its 6th edition, MAMA was held again at Hong Kong's AsiaWorld-Arena on December 3, 2014. K-pop's finest came out for the night including Big Bang's Tae Yang and G-Dragon, EXO, IU, Epik High, 2PM, Infinite, Block B, Sistar, Ailee, Girl's Day, BTS and Winner. Building on last year's meteoric rise, EXO emerged as the biggest winner of the night, sweeping three major awards including two grand prizes. Big Bang, be it as a group or as solo artists, also continues to... [read more]
  13. Originally published on Reprinted with permission. This is our countdown of THE BEST HONG KONG FILMS EVER as decided upon by readers. Originally we were going to list 150 films but because of the amount of participation - 166 voters, 481 films nominated - we were able to extend this out to a massive list of 200 films. Shocking. I mean, who knew people liked that many Hong Kong movies? So, what's this list good for? Well, besides reading material at work, you can use this as a list of recommended films as selected by your peers. Who better to tell you what to watch than other normal people, plus a few journalists, film fest personnel, the occasional producer... [read more]
  14. YumCha! Picks: 10 + 1 Asian School Movies
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    Less than a month into September and summer already seems so very far away, especially for all the students out there. We've decided to head back to school as well with some of our favorite school movies about student life, the learning process and the precious lessons and rites of passage that come with the student experience, be it in university, high school, primary school, kindergarten or even ninja academy! 1. 3 Idiots (India) If Bollywood films are accurate, most Indian parents want their children to be an engineer, a doctor or a lawyer. Those children are the subject of 3 Idiots, a comedy about the pressures that aspiring engineers in an elite university face when they're made to... [read more]
  15. YesAsia 2014 Bestsellers - Half-Year Report
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    The below rankings are based on sales of movie, music and TV releases on from January 1 to June 30, 2014. Sales of all editions and versions of the same title are summed up to determine the total sales and ranking of each title. BEST-SELLING C-POP RELEASES EXO continues to dominate the C-pop charts in the first half of 2014, filling a whopping four spots in the top ten bestsellers list with their latest album Overdose leading the pack. Coming in at number two is EXO's senior labelmate Super Junior M with Swing. Canto-pop veterans also have a strong showing with Sandy Lam's album Re: Workz slotting right after the SM youngsters, followed by fellow diva Sammi Cheng. Longtime... [read more]
  16. AmadeuS Revisited - Q&A with Topp Dogg
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    Though Topp Dogg has debuted for less than a year, the hip-hop boy band has been bringing fresh new ideas and surprises to the K-pop world with every release. After the fantasy concept of their Arario special album, the group turns to classical with the third mini-album AmadeuS, which is inspired by the same-titled 1984 movie about the rivalry between Mozart and Antonio Salieri. The famous story of Amadeus takes on a whole new look and sound when transplanted into the world of K-pop. The genius of Mozart and the jealousy of Salieri are reflected in the contrasting tone and structure of Topp Dogg's new album as well as the division of the members into two teams – Team Mozart (B-Joo, Nakta,... [read more]
  17. 15 Years and Counting - Q&A with Fly to the Sky
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    K-pop groups often seem to have a limited lifespan, but this spring a duo that debuted in the late nineties has returned to claim the charts. Five years after their eighth album, Fly to the Sky finally makes their long-awaited comeback with the ninth album Continuum, just in time for their 15th anniversary! Both Brian and Hwanhee have successful solo careers of their own, but nothing makes the hearts of music fans flutter quite like when their voices come together, as evident in their title song "You You You." The dramatic ballad written, composed and arranged by Lee Sang In, who also composed Hwanhee's solo "Because I Missed Your Heart" and "Alcohol" from Fly to the Sky's Decennium album,... [read more]
  18. Fruit Chan and The Midnight After
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    The Midnight After, director Fruit Chan's highly anticipated adaptation of internet novel Lost on a Red Minibus to Taipo, has finally arrived. In addition to achieving box office success, the film was also critically acclaimed as the most spectacular post-apocalyptic film to come out of Hong Kong in recent years. Starring pop duo Shine (Tsui Tin Yau, Wong Yau Nam), Janice Man, Simon Yam, Kara Hui and others, the film depicts the odd and darkly comical adventures of a minibus full of everyday citizens when they become the only survivors in a desolate Hong Kong. Selected for the Berlin Film Festival, the Hong Kong International Film Festival and the Udine Far East Film Festival, The Midnight... [read more]
  19. YumCha! Picks: 10 + 1 Graduation Songs
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    In the US, students usually graduate in May and June. In Japan, it's March; in Korea, February; in China, June. No matter when and where you graduate, though, there's probably a song or two accompanying your final days of school. Songs to belt out together with friends, songs with corny lyrics that ring so true, songs that bring back memories when you hear them again years later. Here are the 10+1 songs on our graduation playlist of friendship, days gone by and days to come! 1. Arai Yumi (Matsutoya Yumi) – Sotsugyou Shashin Singer-songwriter Arai Yumi (now Matsutoya Yumi) tied the theme of graduation in with another popular schoolyard story in her hit 1975 ballad about an adult woman who... [read more]
  20. Rock Voyage - Five Questions with Royal Pirates
    Written By YumCha! Editorial Team
    Korean-American rock band Royal Pirates first caught the attention of music fans back in 2009 when they were racking up views on YouTube with their covers. Their videos of K-pop hits were particularly popular: their rock renditions of Super Junior's Sorry Sorry and Wonder Girls' Nobody have accumulated over half a million views. Despite all the YouTube sensation buzz surrounding them at the time, Royal Pirates chose to take a longer voyage and make music at their own pace. The band – formed by Kim Moon Chul, Kim Soo Yoon and James Lee – did not formally make their debut until August 2013 with the single Shout Out. Now, over four years after they entered the K-pop radar with a raw indie band... [read more]
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