Saturday, July 18, 2009

Please let it be true

I haven't found any confirmation on this yet, but the website Shaw Brothers Reloaded is reporting that Celestial is gearing up to release another batch of Shaw Brothers titles on DVD, possibly as early as Autumn/Winter 2009. I really hope that this is true, especially because among those titles are a few that I've been wanting to see for quite a long time, in particular a couple of 1960s spy films directed by Umetsugu Inoue, the Japanese director responsible for fun-n'-frothy Shaw Brothers musicals like Hong Kong Nocturne and Hong Kong Rhapsody.

The first of these is 1967's Operation Lipstick, which stars Cheng Pei-Pei, Temptress of a Thousand Faces' Tina Chin Fei, and The Golden Buddha's Paul Chang Chung. The other is 1968's The Brain Stealers, a Lilly Ho starrer for which I found the accompanying very strange looking poster on the Celestial website. (Alleged brain theft aside, I'd say it looks more like someone stole Lilly's body -- and then replaced it with a drunken Etch-a-sketch rendering.) Given Inoue's flamboyant sensibility, both of these promise to offer something a bit different from the numerous Bond knock-offs that Lo Wei helmed for SB during the 60s.

Right now I would characterize my reaction to this potential news as one of "cautious excitement", which in practice means that I am jumping up and down while maintaining a very serious expression on my face. This is proving to be a lot more difficult to do on a prolonged basis than I initially thought it would be, so I hope that either someone confirms this story or Celestial poops out those DVDs sooner than later.

(Thanks to Durian Dave over at Soft Film for steering me toward the original post.)

7 comments:

prof. grewbeard said...

sounds Shawsome!...

venoms5 said...

I've been looking forward to this since first hearing about it a couple months ago. Shaw reloaded had previously posted some false news about a "16 Sparkling Diamonds Shaw Stars Tour" that turned out to be a fake. So hopefully, this turns out to be true. I would think they wouldn't make false claims on purpose, anyways. I am curious, though, why Celestial has been mum about this. It's not like there's bootlegs of AVENGERS FROM HELL or WELL OF DOOM floating around there much less in those dreaded English dubs that a lot of people go crazy over.

Michael Barnum said...

Gosh, I hope it is true!! I need me some more Hong Kong spy films!

duriandave said...

I'm trying not to get my hopes up, since there are quite a few titles on that list that I've been dying to see, but I will join you in "cautious excitement". ;)

Keith said...

More cautious excitement. To be honest, I never thought Celestial's Shaw Bros. experiment would last this long. The sales numbers on those things must be really low.

That poster looks like one of those plywood things you stick your face through for a photo op at tourist traps.

venoms5 said...

They managed to release over 540 movies so someone was buying them. Some titles didn't move many units, though, but others did. I'm grateful for what got put out there for I thought they would never come out since they'd been bootlegged to death in the interim and were still being bootlegged both here and Asia when the discs hit the streets. Some Chinatown shops had the bootleg R0 subbed versions right next to the legit ones and those crappy Red Sun discs weren't too far away, either.

Todd said...

I've heard that the entire line is supported by sales of Whose Baby Is In The Classroom.