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<nettime> Die Another Day: Activism at the Box Office
Are Flagan on Thu, 12 Dec 2002 08:54:02 +0100 (CET)


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<nettime> Die Another Day: Activism at the Box Office


[Looks like the global franchise may be in trouble locally...-af]

+ + + + +

http://channels.netscape.com/ns/news/story.jsp?floc=FF-PLS-PLS&id=1211013950
01000015&dt=20021211013900&w=CNN&coview=

The latest James Bond film "Die Another Day" is not sitting well with the
Korean audience, though it hasn't even opened in theaters here yet, Variety
reports.

Due to debut in Korea at the end of the month, the 20th official Bond
feature is the target of fierce criticism among young Koreans who claim the
picture is culturally ignorant and degrading to Korea as a whole.

The country is the 10th biggest foreign box office territory for U.S.
pictures.

Among specific problems is the picture's portrayal of North Korea as "an
axis of evil," the final scene in which Bond makes love to a woman in a
Buddhist Temple (a taboo of the worst kind here) and outdated scenes like a
South Korean walking a cow in a farming landscape (a perceived insult to
Korea's modern, industrial image).

"Die Another Day" features inter-Korean confrontations, starring
Korean-American actor Rick Yune as a ruthless character who goes to great
lengths to achieve Korean reunification.

The film was criticized by Koreans from the get-go.

The Korea Federation of University Student Councils (Hanchongnyon) issued a
statement at the end of last year, calling for production to be canceled.

Leading Korean actor Cha In-pyo refused an offer earlier this year to play a
North Korean colonel in the movie. Now he is considered a hero among the
young.

Accordingly, actor Yune was not very well received when he visited Seoul
Monday to promote the film. He spent much time at the press conference
answering questions about the anti-U.S. feeling in Korea and its potential
effects on the movie. A local TV show bumped him from its lineup.

"There are some misunderstandings of the movie. The enemy described in the
movie is extreme nationalists, not North Korea," a 20th Century Fox Korea
statement said, promising an on-schedule release and an extensive marketing
campaign. Fox is handling overseas distribution for MGM.

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