Hollywood film producer, Bill Mechanic
Vietnamese legends and folk tales are a source of inspiration for Vietnamese filmmakers, famous Hollywood film producer, Bill Mechanic, has said in a recent meeting with the local movie sector.

The US veteran film producer stressed the treasure of folk culture would give Vietnamese filmmakers great inspiration to create distinctive works.

“However, you must retell what you discovered with state-of-the-art language and point of view,” Mechanic said at the meeting with Vietnamese filmmakers, directors and scriptwriters in Ho Chi Minh City earlier this week.

Mechanic, who was chairman and CEO of Twentieth Century Fox Filmed Entertainment from 1994 to 2000, came to share his experience in movie business.

He focused on two topics “How to make a good film” and “How to earn money from movies”.

According to him, to bring out a good work, the filmmaker must turn a familiar event to the audience into a must-see new event.

Asked by a young director how to make a film with only US$200,000, Mechanic said: “If the funding is too low, you should choose a good screenplay that aims to build characters with original personalities and minimize the cost for shooting.”

He said the most important thing is how to make the audience feel you made the film with $1 million, not $200,000.

Mechanic said there was almost no chance for Vietnamese filmmakers to enter Hollywood – the world’s largest movie kingdom.

However, he said 15 years ago South Korean movies were similar to Vietnam’s, but they had made great progress, saying Vietnam could do the same.

While working for the Twentieth Century Fox, Mechanic oversaw production of such hits as “Independence Day” (1996), “Titanic” (1997), “Braveheart” (1995), “Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace” and “Boys Don’t Cry” (1999).

During his seven years at the helm, Twentieth Century Fox gained 72 nominations for Oscar awards.

Prior to that, Mechanic was president of international distribution and worldwide video at Walt Disney Studios.

Reported by Ha Anh – Translated by Thu Thuy

US studio giant Disney held a news conference in Ho Chi Minh City Wednesday to announce a newly-signed deal in a program to expand operations in Indochina, including Vietnam.

Disney recently signed a licensing agreement with East Media Holdings Inc. (EMHI) to sell toys, apparel and other consumer products in Vietnam, Cambodia and Laos.

EMHI will be Disney’s official partner to license, conduct, exploit and use images and brands of Walt Disney in the Indochina.

A Disney representative flew to HCMC Tuesday, together with the company’s famous ambassadors – Mickey and Minnie.

In related news, Financial Times earlier this month reported Disney was expanding its investments in Vietnam as part of a drive to generate new growth from its international businesses.

The media group, which already has cable channels in Vietnam, had struck an agreement to distribute films there, including the feature film Cars, a much-anticipated animated production from its Pixar division.

The investment reflects the company’s intention to focus on Vietnam, where a rapidly growing economy offers the potential of greater leisure spending.

Andy Bird, president of Disney Consumer Products, said the company was “encouraged” by its growth in China but also stressed the importance of a host of smaller economies in Asia, Latin America and Eastern Europe.

“If you’re going to become a truly global company, it’s important that you focus on countries like Vietnam,” Financial Times quoted Bird as saying.

He also suggested that Disney would take a long-term approach in Vietnam, seeking to build relationships with retailers and deepen awareness of its characters so that it could capitalize as the country’s economy and technology infrastructure develop.

In 2005, Disney generated US$1.4 billion in revenues in Asia compared with $24.8 billion in the US and Canada, and $5.2 billion in Europe.

Reported by Diep Duc Minh – Translated by Thu Thuy

Bill Mechanic, a famous Hollywood film producer met Vietnamese filmmakers and directors Monday and Tuesday to share with them his experience in movie business.

Mechanic, who was chairman and CEO of Twentieth Century Fox Filmed Entertainment from 1994 to 2000, focused on two topics “How to make a good film” and “How to earn money from movies”.

According to him, to bring out a good work the folk maker must turn an event seemed to be familiar to the audience into a new and must-see thing.

While working for the Twentieth Century Fox, Mechanic oversaw production of such hits as “Titanic” (1997), “Braveheart” (1995), and “Boys Don’t Cry” (1999).

Prior to that, Mechanic was president of international distribution and worldwide video at Walt Disney Studios.

Source: Nguoi Lao Dong – Translated by Thu Thuy

The Japanese Photographers Association (JPA) will hold an exhibition of photos capturing Vietnam’s landscape, culture and its people in Tokyo early next month.

The month-long exhibition will feature selected photos taken by Vietnamese photographers from many parts of the country.

Three Vietnamese photographers will attend the exhibition at the invitation of the organizer.

Ba Han of Ho Chi Minh City will showcase his photo collection Thoi Tho Au (Childhood), while Nguyen Hoai Linh of Hanoi will display photographs capturing daily life in the capital city of Vietnam.

Do Dien Khanh will join the exhibition with a collection of photos featuring the scenery and people of Vietnam’s central region.

The JPA will also hold many exhibition rooms in Tokyo displaying works by members of the Hue Photographers Club in central Thua Thien-Hue province and women’s photographic club of Hai Au in HCMC. Since 1996, JPA has organized annual photo exhibitions of works by photographers from Japan and other countries.

Vietnam was selected as the invitee for this year’s event, which marks JPA’s 144th anniversary.

Reported by Quang Thi – Translated by Thu Thuy

A cinema in famous beach Ha Long City screens mostly foreign films  

Vietnam’s first free-of-charge film library was inaugurated Saturday in Hanoi with a collection of classic films and research documents.

The library offers Italian, French, English and other films, newspapers and film-related documents with the cost limited to membership fees.


Members can watch DVDs and tapes on TVs at the library.


Titled Movie Space, the library is financed and managed by the Vietnam Association of Cinematography.


Source: Vietnam Television – Translated by Hoang Bao 

BUENOS AIRES — A seminar to discuss potential travel tours throughout southeast Asia, and Viet Nam in particular, was held in Buenos Aires, Argentina, with participation from nearly 50 travel agencies.

At the seminar, hosted by The Omega Travel Company of Argentina onTuesday, director Sergio Melman spoke highly of Viet Nam’s history and culture, as well as the tourism potential in Ha Long Bay, Ha Noi’s Old Quarter, the former imperial city of Hue, Hoi An, HCM City and the Cuu Long (Mekong) Delta provinces.
They were also introduced Viet Nam’s traditional dress, the "ao dai" and a number of pictures of Viet Nam landscapes. The company will organise the second seminar on Viet Nam on May 31.

Third Made–in–Viet Nam fair to be held in Da Nang

DA NANG — The third Made–in–Viet Nam fair will open in the central city of Da Nang on Saturday, with the participation of 200 enterprises nationwide.

Co-organised by the Viet Nam Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Bac Ha Exhibition and Trade Co, the six-day fair will display industrial products, handicrafts, and food products in 280 pavilions.

Programmes to support Vietnamese enterprises in building and advertising their trademarks will also be held on the sidelines of the fair.

Trade through Lao Cai border gate nears $42.6m

LAO CAI — Import-export value across the Lao Cai border gate in the first four months of this year reached US$42.6 million, marking a modest increase of 3 per cent over the same time last year.

Imports contributed US$24 million to the total, accounting for 56 per cent of the total trade value and representing a 20 per cent decline year-on-year.

Key export products via the bordergate included cashews, fruit, iron ore, footwear and plastic goods. — VNS


May 28, 2006

Top Vietnamese player to train abroad
   05/25/2006 — 11:25(GMT+7)

Ha Noi (VNA) – Nguyen Tien Minh, ranked number one nationally in badminton, has been selected as the only badminton player to receive a scholarship to train abroad from the International Olympics Committee (IOC).

The committee and the Viet Nam Badminton Federation are working together to perfect Minh's form through practice in Malaysia, one of the most developed badminton countries in the world.

Minh is among eight Vietnamese athletes receiving scholarships from IOC.

IOC provides scholarships for shooting, taekwondo, badminton, athletics, weightlifting, and rowing.

The Viet Nam Olympics Committee is discussing with IOC a scholarship offer for tennis player Ngo Viet Ha, who has been performing well lately.-Enditem

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