Entertainment Spotlight

  • Catching Up: Santana, Taj Mahal and a déjà vu ‘Blue Christmas’

    Posted by Ben Fong-Torres

    Catching Up: Santana, Taj Mahal and a déjà vu ‘Blue Christmas’
    By Ben Fong-Torres It’s short shrift time. I have a life that’s ripe (and slightly wrinkled) for blogs and tweeting; for facebooking and updating. I’m just no good at it. My last column here on AsianConnections was about the memorial in late July for my sister Shirley. My last posting on the authors’ site, Redroom, was about a radio promo tour I did (20 stops, all on the phone...

Arts & Entertainment Articles

  • Quincy Jones is the Executive Producer of new Asian girl group "Blush"

    Posted by Admin


    May 22, 2013

    Legendary music producer/composer Quincy Jones turned 80 this year and he's still going strong. His latest endeavors include representing young talent including K-Pop style Asian girl group Blush. Click here for the story by James McKinley, Jr. at the New York Times.

    Girl group Blush includes talents from five Asian countries, Ji Hae Lee from South Korea, Alisha Budhrani from India, Natsuko Danjo from Japan, Victoria Chan from Hong Kong/China and Angeli Flores from the Philippines. Quincy executive produced Blush's new single "Warrior." Click here to view the music video. 

    On a separate note, Quincy Jones was interviewed for a documentary about Ben Fong-Torres, the legendary rock journalist and former senior editor of Rolling Stone magazine. The documentary is being directed by Suzanne Joe Kai. Thanks Quincy! 



  • Hulu celebrates Asian Pacific American Heritage Month with new Asian film releases

    Posted by Admin

    May, 2013




    New Asian film titles have been added to Hulu in celebration of Asian Pacific Heritage Month.


    Hulu's ChineseJapanese and Korean libraries now include:


    Korean Titles:Korean Dramas: Launching are My Sassy Girl (dir. Jae-Young Kwaek), 200 Pounds Beauty (Young-Hwa Kim), and action drama Crying Fist (Seung-Wan Ryoo with Oldboy’s Min-Sik Choi).Korean Cannes Selections: HahahaVirgin Stripped Bare by Her Bachelors (Sang-Soo Hong), and A Brand New Life (Ounie Lecomte).


    Additionally, the famed Oldboy trilogy is available on Hulu Plus until June 30th. The sci-fi cult classic is about a man determined to find his kidnapper who imprisoned him for 15 years. The film has been recognized at numerous festivals, and took home the Grand Prize of the Jury at Cannes in 2004.  Enter the world of director Chan-Wook Park with OldboySympathy for Mr. Vengeance and Lady Vengeance.


    Chinese Titles

    Chinese dramas, such as Love In a Puff (Ho-Cheung Pang), The Soul Of Bread (Pin-Chuan Kao), and Don’t Go Breaking My Heart (Johnnie To) make their Hulu debut in the Chinese film category as well.


    Japanese Titles: Criterion Collection features masterpieces by Akira KurosawaMasaki Koboyashi and Nagisa Oshima, among many others. New Criterion titles never before seen on DVD are coming exclusively to Hulu soon, so stay tuned.


    To find Asian films at Hulu, you can go to its categorized playlists, such as New Asian Films on HuluChinese or Korean Dramas and A Beginner’s Guide to Korean Dramas.






  • ROCKSHOW - Paul McCartney and Wings Concert Film Screens in 1,000 theaters and 750+ cities

    Posted by Suzanne Kai

    Update: May 17, 2013


    Photo credit: Robert Ellis, Paul McCartney and Wings on 1975-1976 "Wings Across America" tour. 


    We saw ROCKSHOW last night, May 16. If you are a Paul McCartney fan - this is a must see remastered concert film of his 1975-1976 "Wings Across America" tour with Wings, the band he and his late wife Linda put together back in 1971.


    By its 1975-1976 tour Wings was going full throttle.


    You can still check the theatrical screening schedule at  http://www.rockshowonscreen.com of this concert film for future dates.


    May 9, 2013


    Here we are in mid-2013, and Paul McCartney is still as popular as ever selling out entire stadiums around the U.S. on his latest live tour "Out There." 


    In our upcoming documentary in development, Like A Rolling Stone: The Life & Times of Ben Fong-Torres, about legendary rock journalist and former senior editor at Rolling Stone magazine, and our resident columnist, we will be including some fascinating never-before-released excerpts of Ben's exclusive interviews with Paul McCartney.


    While our documentary about Ben Fong-Torres' fabled life is still in the works, go out and enjoy ROCKSHOW. 


    SpectiCast, in association with Eagle Rock Entertainment releases the film May 15 in the UK with Sir Paul McCartney at the red carpet premiere, and worldwide on May 16 on more than 1,000 screens in 750+ cities. For screenings in your area check http://www.rockshowonscreen.com 

  • International best-selling author Haruki Murakami breaks book sales record

    Posted by Admin


    May 13, 2013 

    Haruki Murakami Photo credit: Random HouseWhen Haruki Murakami's latest book became available for pre-order in Japan last month it broke the country's record for pre-orders on Amazon.co.jp within eleven days.

    After the first week of the release, Bungeishungu, his publisher in Japan ordered one million copies to be printed. Last month book stores in Japan opened at midnight to greet long lines of customers. Haruki Murakami's latest novel is Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage. This is his first new novel since writing best-selling IQ84 three years ago which also received worldwide acclaim. Murakami's books have been translated into 42 languages. Murakami lives near Tokyo and was born in Kyoto in 1949. 

    Murakami was a writing fellow at Princeton Univeresity in Princeton, New Jersey, Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts, and Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts. 

    No word yet on when Murakami's latest book will be translated into English, but if you can read Japanese you can check it out here.


    For more articles related to Haruki Murakami's books and life:

    Official Random House U.S. site for author Haruki MurakamiJapantimes.co.jpAmazon.co.jpAmazon.com author page on Haruki MurakamiFacebook page on author Haruki Murakami managed by Alfred A. Knopf/Vintage Books, part of Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group (Random House)Blog post at NewYorker.com by Roland Kelts "Lost in Translation"Wikipedia

     Japanese edition of Haruki Murakami's "Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage"

  • Mario Machado - Pioneer Los Angeles TV and Radio Broadcaster - 1935 - 2013

    Posted by Suzanne Kai

    Los Angeles May 6, 2013

    by Suzanne Joe Kai

    In Memoriam: Mario Machado 1935-2013 Pioneer Radio and TV Newsman, Anchor and ActorMario Machado, the nation's first Asian American on-air television news reporter and anchor passed away May 4, 2013 at age 78. Mario was a pioneer who blazed a trail for all of us. A pioneer with heart, he went out of his way to encourage us to follow our dreams. 

    In 2010, the Asian American Journalists Association honored Mario Machado inducting him onto its new Honor Roll of Asian American Pioneers in U.S. Journalism (1925-1975) at AAJA's 29th annual National Convention in Los Angeles.

    In 1999, Machado was honored by the Chinese Historical Society of America in San Francisco. The CHSA produced this video which has excerpts of some of his early broadcasts.

    As fellow pioneer television broadcaster Christopher Chow says about Mario:"Everybody in our field and in the Asian American community owes him for opening doors for us and for helping us to gain credibility and opportunities.  Not only did he perform well on air but he actively advocated for us, for our inclusion, for the hiring and promoting of Asian Pacific Islander journalists by news media organizations all across America. Mario, we salute you."

    Chow wrote about Mario in his "Casting Our Voices" for the Chinese Historical Society's tribute to Chinese American Pioneer Broadcasters:

    "His father's Portuguese name and his Chinese mother's heritage steeled him for the travails of the mass media system that often prejudged him as a Mexican and ignored him as a Chinese American. His undeniable talent for communications made him one of the first and few ethnic minority national network sports analysts when he joined CBS Sports in 1968 as a color commentator."

    Mario began his career as an on-air news reporter at KHJ-TV (now KCAL-TV) in 1967. In 1969 he became the first consumer affairs reporterin the nation at KNXT Los Angeles (now KCBS-TV Channel 2), where he...