Art and Entertainment

2020 Taipei Game Show to spotlight future of gaming

'Final Fantasy' producer Shinji Hashimoto to join international lineup of keynote speakers at 18th TGS in February

Taiwan News
Date: 2019/12/28
By: Micah McCartney, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

Hashimoto served as executive producer of next year’s Final Fantasy VII Remake. (Trailer screen capture)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The Taipei Game Show (TGS) is returning to Taipei for its 18th year to give gamers and industry players alike a glimpse into what 2020 has in store for the world of interactive entertainment.

The TGS, which is organized each year by the Taipei Computer Association, had humble beginnings. Once held in a small facility near Taipei Songshan Airport, the two-day convention now fills the sprawling Nangang Exhibition Center and has seen the number of attendees expand from 1,000 to 100,000.

The event is divided into two sections: the B2B (business to business) Zone and B2C (business to customer) Zone, according to organizers. It will also host the Asia Pacific Game Summit (APGS), which features talks by big and up-and-coming names in the industry, from founders of indie startups to producers of major developers.

On the B2C side of things, organizers promise visitors an "amusement park" — a wealth of products to try out that span the realms of online gaming, consoles, virtual reality, eSports, and even board games. More than 100 companies will be showing off their wares, with exhibitors hailing from Taiwan, neighboring Japan, South Korea, China, and Hong Kong as well as Southeast Asia, Europe, and North America.    [FULL  STORY]

Talent show gives those with hearing impairment a stage

Taipei Times
Date: Dec 15, 2019
By: Sherry Hsiao  /  Staff reporter

Dozens of people with hearing impairment, along with their families, yesterday gathered in Taipei to see the results of their performances in a talent show.

The annual event is now in its seventh year, hearing aid provider and event host Clinico said.

The Performers included sisters Chen Yen-jung (陳妍蓉) and Chen Ssu-ching (陳楒晴), eight and seven years old respectively; Yeh Chun-ping (葉君萍), 40; Yang Ting-yu (楊婷淯), 13; Yeh Chun-ho (葉俊和), four; Lin Fei-yang (林飛揚), 12; Chen Yu-lin (陳宥霖), 10; and Huang Yi-chen (黃苡真), five, Clinico said.

Yeh Chun-ping lost hearing in her left ear about 10 years ago, but was initially optimistic, she said.
[FULL  STORY]

‘Over the Rainbow’ turns on the tears in Taiwan

There was crying in the aisles at a preview in Taipei for a biographical movie about star Judy Garland

Taiwan News
Date: 2019/12/14
By: Lyla Liu, Taiwan News, Staff Writer
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“Judy” will be released in Taiwan on Dec. 20. (Cai Chang International photo)\

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — The award-nominated film "Judy" starring Renée Zellweger will be released in Taiwan on Dec. 20.

Featuring the life of the legendary American movie star, Judy Garland, it focuses on the last years of her life, when she lived in London. Zellweger is best known for movies such as "Bridget Jones's Diary," "Chicago," and "Down With Love."

Garland’s life reflects the sadness behind the glamorous entertainment business, according to film company Cai Chang International. Director Rupert Goold said the script, written by Tom Edge, intrigued him by emphasizing just the beginning and end of Garland’s career.

Zellweger has been nominated as Best Actress in the category of Motion Picture Drama by the 77th Golden Globe Awards for her role in the film "Judy." Additionally, the Los Angeles Online Film Critics Society Awards announced that Zellweger is a nominee for the Best Actress Award.
[FULL  STORY]

Q&A With KEFF, Director of ‘The Secret Lives of Asians at Night’

"The Secret Lives of Asians at Night" is a short film featured in the 2019 Taipei Film Festival. Taiwanese-American director KEFF talks about his upbringing and the inspiration for the film.

The News Lens
Date: 2019/12/13
By: New Bloom editor Brian Hioe

Q&A With KEFF, Director of 'The Secret Lives of Asians at Night'

Source: KEFF

BH: So what led you to make the film, The Secret Lives of Asians at Night? Do you think it has to do with your background?

KEFF: I moved to the U.S. when I was 10. When you’re an immigrant at that age, going to a new place, your greatest priority is fitting in. I moved to a neighborhood that was 95 percent white — in that context, it meant having to neglect and suppressing the Asian part of myself.

I remember when my Mom would speak Mandarin to me in public I would get upset at her. I would say, “We’re in America, speak English.” Or she would make luroufan for me and I would bring it to school and get made fun of. I’d ask her, “Why can't you just give me Lunchables or something standard like everyone else?”

As a result, I never really thought that much about being Asian growing up. I didn’t really think of it as a culture or heritage — just more of a statistic, like your height or eye color.    [FULL  INTERVIEW]

Documentary on late American dancer set for release in Taiwan

Radio Taiwan International
Date: 11 December, 2019
By: Shirley Lin

A scene from ChanceOperations, a work of late American dancer Merce Cunningham (Photo by Sky Digi Entertainment)

A documentary about the late American dancer Merce Cunningham will be shown in Taiwan in January 2020. The film incorporates an interview on how I-Ching, an ancient Chinese divination text, influenced his work.    [FULL  STORY]

Dutch singer shares signature hit in S Taiwan

Youtube sensation to perform ‘You Raise Me Up’ at Tainan shopping mall

Taiwan News
Date: 2019/12/01
By: Ching-Tse Cheng, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Winner of the third season of "Holland's Got Talent," Martin Hurkens, arrived

Martin Hurkens (Youtube screenshot)

at Tainan's Tayih Landis Hotel on Saturday (Nov. 30) and is expected to take the stage at the Taiwan Spinning (T.S.) Mall on Sunday (Dec. 1) afternoon.

Accompanied by his wife, Hurkens was greeted by Tainan City Mayor Huang Wei-cher (黃偉哲) with pressed flower art and a scarf made from orchids. Huang said he was introduced to Hurken's singing during his campaign last year when a friend shared a music clip of the 65-year-old from the Netherlands, reported CNA.    [FULL  STORY]

Ignored by China, Taiwan cinema walks its own road

Taipei film awards honor homegrown hit 'Detention'

Nikkei Asian Review
Date: December 01, 2019
By: Chris Horton

A still from the hit film “Detention,” which explores the “White Terror,” a 38-year period of martial law in Taiwan during which vigilance against communist infiltration dominated daily life. (Courtesy of 1 Production)\

TAIPEI — Stymied by censorship and political repression during decades of one-party rule, Taiwan’s film industry blossomed during the island’s liberalization in the 1980s and 1990s. But in recent years, it has felt cross pressure from the censorship regime of the neighboring Chinese Communist Party in Beijing.

With a heavily Mandarin-speaking population of 23 million, compared with 1.4 billion in China, many of the democratic island’s filmmakers are attracted to the larger market across the Taiwan strait. But bigger-budget films like “The Assassin,” a 2015 release by director Hou Hsiao-hsien, have had to comply with increasingly restrictive Chinese censors, whose demands include downplaying or erasing Taiwanese identity.

Some filmmakers, though, are succeeding with low-budget Taiwan-centered stories told by young directors and aimed at the local market. John Hsu’s hit film “Detention” offers a prime example of how Taiwanese films can find success. Not only is the film Taiwan’s highest-grossing release this year, it landed a slew of awards at the annual Golden Horse Awards held in Taipei on Saturday.

Hsu, who has directed a number of successful short films, starting with “Intoxicant” (2008), had been deeply moved by the video game “Detention” (2017), he told the Nikkei Asian Review. The survival horror adventure was created by Taiwan’s Red Candle Games for Steam, a distribution platform owned by Valve Corp. of the U.S.    [FULL  STORY]

Donnie Yen’s ‘Ip Man’ finale

The fourth film in the series focuses on the relationship between Ip Man and his greatest student, Bruce Lee

Taiwan News
Date: 2019/12/01
By: Lyla Liu, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Hong Kong martial arts actor Donnie Yen (甄子丹) has announced that 'Ip

“Ip Man 4” will be the final bow for Donnie Yen in the title role. (Sky Film photo)\

Man 4: The Finale' (葉問4:完結篇) will be his last kung fu film.

The classic kung fu film series, Ip Man, has been running for a decade. Dozens of popular scenes have in that time been created by Yen, such as the three-minute fight with boxer Mike Tyson.

The Ip Man series of films unveiled the legendary life of Wing Chun (詠春拳) kung fu master Ip Man, who inspired generations of martial artists. 'Ip Man 4: The Finale' opens on Dec. 20 and stars Yen, Wu Yue (吳樾), who plays the Tai Chi master Wang Tsung-hua (萬宗華), and martial art instructor Chris Collins.

Among all Ip Man’s apprentices, his relationship with Bruce Lee (李小龍) is the most intriguing one. Despite the heated fight scenes in 'Ip Man 4,' the film mainly focuses on the relationship between the master and Lee, played by Hong Kong actor Chan Kwok-kwan (陳國坤) — who looks just like Lee himself.    [FULL  STORY]

‘Detention’: A Clichéd Salute to Freedom

2019 Golden Horse Awards

The News Lens
Date: 2019/11/21
By: Daphne K. Lee


“Have you forgotten or are you scared of remembering?” This eerie quote from the recent Taiwanese horror film Detention (返校) has become a catchphrase among the twentysomethings.

For the younger Taiwanese who never lived through an authoritarian era, they might just use the haunting question to mock their forgetful friends. But it alludes to a traumatic history that’s still relevant today.

Adapted from a survival video game of the same title, Detention is the first feature film directed by John Hsu. The film has received widespread attention for its attempt to explore — or exploit — a highly sensitive topic: Taiwan’s martial law period between 1949 and 1987. It was one of the world’s longest martial law periods, during which hundreds of thousands of Taiwanese were jailed or executed for their alleged opposition to the authoritarian government Kuomintang.

Set in the fictional Greenwood High School in 1962, the first segment of the film, “Nightmare,” opens with a female student, Fang Ray-shin (Gingle Wang), waking up from a nap and finding herself in a ghostly classroom with broken windows and chilling winds. In an act that mimics the original gameplay, Fang lights a red candle that becomes the only light source leading us from one dimly-lit scene to another.    [FULL  STORY]

Taiwan rock band Fire Ex. and lyricist Albert Leung launch song about Hong Kong

Song draws parallel between Taiwan's 228 Incident and Hong Kong's present predicament

Taiwan News
Date: 2019/11/16
By: Matthew Strong, Taiwan News, Staff Writer

“A City of Sadness” by Fire Ex. with Albert Leung (photo from Facebook). (CNA photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – Taiwanese rock band Fire Ex. (滅火器) and Hong Kong songwriter Albert Leung (林夕) have collaborated on a song in support of the Hong Kong pro-democracy protesters, with the title of “A City Of Sadness,” reminiscent of Taiwan’s own 228 Incident.

The four members of the Kaohsiung rock group have a history of supporting student activism in Taiwan, while the new song, with a Chinese title which can be translated as “A Tale of Two Cities” (雙城記), bears the same official English-language title as the 1989 Hou Hsiao-hsien (侯孝賢) movie about the 228 Incident, the large-scale repression of a Taiwanese uprising by the Kuomintang government in which thousands of people died, and which was followed by the White Terror period of executions, disappearances and banishment.

What Hong Kong is going through today, looks more and more like what Taiwan went through 70 years ago, Fire Ex. members wrote on their Facebook page.    [FULL  STORY]