All posts tagged entertainment

Great care – seven days a week

Published September 30, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



Mahachai Hospital comes up with a new weekend clinic to ensure that patients enjoy timely and effective treatment

PATIENTS have long avoided hospitals over the weekend out of well-justified concerns that fewer senior staff and specialists will be on hand than during the week and that many diagnostic tests cannot be performed. That’s fine if there is nothing urgent about their complaint but urgent cases need prompt treatment no matter the day of the week or the outcome could be disastrous.

While no research has been conducted locally, Mahachai Hospital Group is responding to international studies that highlight the negative “weekend effect” on the sick with the launch a new weekend speciality medical centre at Mahachai Hospital 1, which ensures the same levels of care and treatment as on a normal working day. In another bonus, prices will also be the same as on weekdays.

The centre , which is known as the “Weekend Hospital” and is based on the concept “Because Care Has No Weekend”, has been under preparation for more than a year and was officially introduced on June 19.

Pongpat Patnavanich, chairman of Mahachai Group, explained that the new clinic would be of particular benefit to the parents of young people in Mahachai and nearby, who work in Bangkok or other cities and can only return home at weekends.

“The weekend hospital means that children can take their parents for consultation on their days off and be confident that the service will be top class,” he says.

“Today more and more people from Bangkok are coming for consultation at Mahachai Hospital 1 because they know they will have good access to specialists.”

Pongpat adds that the hospital’s 24-hour cardiac centre was recognised as among the best thanks to highly experienced physicians and well-trained staff. Indeed, since opening, the centre has treated more than 10,000 patients with cardiac catheterisation and performed surgery on some 1,000 heart patients.

Tinnakorn Rujinarong, architect and interior designer, said that he was admitted to Mahachai Hospital for colon cancer treatment 12 years ago. Today, he is in full remission and sees his doctor just for his annual check-up.

“People are often curious why my family and I go to Mahachai Hospital when we live in the Lat Phrao area. They point out that there are many renowned hospitals in Bangkok with highly skilled specialists much nearer to home.

“But it’s not just medical standards, I’m very satisfied with the service here. The doctors are friendly and that makes patients feel comfortable and relaxed. Moreover, the doctors make time to talk about symptoms and give detailed advice on treatment options,” Tinnakorn says.

“I think the weekend hospital will be useful for the patients. In addition to emergency cases, many people find it more convenient to meet specialists at the weekends for their regular check-ups.

Manop Ativanichayapong, executive district director at AIA Thailand, says he trusts Mahachai Hospital because of its strong management system.

“The team is efficient and works closely together in caring for the patient,” he says of his own experiences of treatment for the bone narrow disorder Polycythemia vera.

Manop agrees that the weekend hospital initiative will be of benefit to people, especially those living in Samut Sakhon province and nearby.

“It’s not easy to operate the weekend speciality medical centre because it requires doctors and staff to sacrifice their weekends,” he notes.


Bowled over by beauty

Published September 30, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



Marsha Vadhanapanich, Penpak Sirikul and Ruangsak Loychusak are named presenters for new beauty brand Life Star

MEDIA AND entertainment company RS Public has gone into the beauty and personal-care business, recently launching new brand Life Star and introducing its three presenters, Marsha Vadhanapanich, Penpak “Tai” Sirikul and Ruangsak “James” Loychusak, during an event held in the Dusit Thani Bangkok’s Napalai Ballroom.

“Everyone is paying more attention to their health these days, so dietary supplements and beauty products have become social must-haves,” said Surachai Chetchotisak, chief executive officer of RS Public.

“Life Star has highly experienced management and production teams and our supplements and beauty care products are of the highest standards. We have also benefitted from expert advice from research institutes in Switzerland, France, Spain, and Japan. We are now ready to develop and expand our business.”

Life Star’s managing director Chakrit Pichyangkul added that the feedback from sales through teleshopping on Channels 8 and 2 over the past few months had been satisfactory enough to warrant distribution through such retail stores such as Watsons and EveAndBoy.

Life Star is planning to introduce four products targeting premium consumers who are looking for beauty products priced from Bt300 to Bt2,000. They are Magique anti-ageing cream, Gravitas facial-lifting cream, Revive hair-loss-control serum, and Noble White, a whitening product.

Marsha Vadhanapanich, Penpak “Tai” Sirikul and Ruangsak “James” Loychusak expressed their thanks to Surachai for choosing them as Life Star’s ambassadors.

“It is a honour for me to be a presenter for these good-quality products,” Marsha said.

“I’m very proud to represent the products by Gravitas. I’ve tried them and I can honestly say that they suit my skin,” added Penpak.

James too was happy.

“I’ve had a hair problem for a while so was pleased to see that Revive worked for me. I’ve even stopped going to a specialist,” he said.

Many celebrities from the acting and music world turned out for the opening event, among them Rattapoom “Film” Toekongsap, Sittha “Iang” Sapanuchart, Kulamas “KnomJean” Limprawuttiwaranonth, Ratthapoom “Peck” Khainark, Prisana “Bowling” Kumpusiri, Leila “Pon” Soontornvinate, Patida “May” Kamnerdploy, Kullanat “Namfon” Kulpreeyawat, Napapat “Mod” Wattanakamolwut, and Miss Universe Thailand 2014 Weluree “Fai” Ditsayabut.


Thailand by design

Published August 19, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation




The Kingdom has plenty of talent in the design field as evidenced by the entries for the 2016 DEmark Awards

THE COMMERCE Ministry’s Department of International Trade Promotion (DITP) recently joined up with the Thailand Institute of Design and Innovation Promotion to present the creative designs that made it into the finals of the 2016 edition of the DEmark Awards. The DEmark Show 2016, as it was dubbed, was held last week at Siam Paragon’s Lifestyle Hall and also brought together design experts from Thailand and Japan including G-Mark representative Yoshiaki Irobe, and Kazushige Miyake from Japan Institute of Design Promotion (JDP). A DEmark concept store was also opened to customers and assembled the DEmark products from over the past eight years in one place.

“The Design Excellence Award (DEmark) has been held annually for the last nine years. The aim is to promote Thai products and help them become internationally recognised. We try to encourage Thai companies and Thai designers to improve their products and services by adding creativity in terms of functionality and aesthetics, as well as creating a brand that is unique, outstanding, and different. DEmark is a project that has helped Thai designers and Thai brands compete with other countries,” DIPT’s deputy director general Chantira Jimreivat Vivatrat explained.

“Over the past eight years, we have seen Thai designers continue to improve and there are now many new Thai brands whose creative design has been recognised by DEmark. DEmark is a symbol of design excellence. To date, 568 items have been granted the DEmark stamp of approval. Thailand is transforming into a creative economy, and this will lead to sustainable growth in international trade with Asean and international markets.

“This year’s awards have as their concept “Design-Driven Business” to highlight Thailand’s status as a creative economy and to show the Asean and international markets that Thai products are creative, unique and different,” Chantira continued.


“This year, DITP has partnered with Siam Piwat to open the Object of Desire Store in the newly renovated Siam Discovery. This will serve as a retail channel for Thai brands which have won DEmark and other design awards in the home decor category and features more than 160 products.”

ML Kathathong Thongyai, director of Thailand Institute of Design Promotion, was delighted by the interest in the awards noting that the 2016 edition had received 616 entries from 330 applicants.

The awards are divided into six categories: “Industrial Process/Industrial Craft”, “Gift & Decorative Items/Household Items”, “Fashion Apparel/Leather Goods/Jewellery/Textile”, “Home Appliances/Equipment and Facilities for Office”, “Food Packaging/Health & Beauty Packaging”, and “Font/ Graphic on Surface/Digital Media/Identity Design.”


Going to war over wildlife

Published August 18, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



Carter views a carcass left by poachers. Photo/Ivan Carter

Carter views a carcass left by poachers. Photo/Ivan Carter

An elephant kicks up dust on the Savannah. Photo/Ivan Carter

An elephant kicks up dust on the Savannah. Photo/Ivan Carter

Zebra stampede across the grassland. Photo/Ivan Carter

Zebra stampede across the grassland. Photo/Ivan Carter

Ivan Carter and his team keep their eyes peeled for poachers. Photo/Ivan Carter

Ivan Carter and his team keep their eyes peeled for poachers. Photo/Ivan Carter

Hunter-conservationist Ivan Carter takes viewers deep inside Africa on his quest to stop poachers

PROFESSIONAL HUNTER and committed conservationist Ivan Carter makes his television debut in Asia tonight with “Carter’s WAR”, an Outdoor Channel series that takes viewers deep inside Africa to the frontlines of the war being waged with the continent’s wildlife.

Born and raised in Southern Rhodesia, the country that later became Zimbabwe, Carter brings his 25 years of experience as a professional guide to show how the continent’s most precious resource is in danger of extinction. The series takes viewers on a tense and often heart-breaking journey that sees him attempting to confront the wildlife transgressors trying to destroy its habitats for tusks and horns. “WAR” – it stands for wildlife animal response – will also help viewers understand the constant struggle of the African people and the importance of conservation practices.

We chatted with the 46-year-old while he was in Bangkok earlier this month to promote his show.



The way coverage of Africa is handled today, you really only see three things. You look at a news channel and you see all the wars, the drought the starvation and the refugees or you look at Discovery Channel and you see the sunsets and the giraffes. The History Channel focuses on the beautiful people of Africa. Not a single programme talks about a place where the people and the animals meet. Yet in Africa today there are more people than ever before and hence more conflict between wildlife and people than ever before.

With this programme, we try to entertain so viewers will want to know what happens next. Then we want to educate them by providing them information that most of the world doesn’t know. And most importantly we want to show them the solution to these problems in such a way that we all become engaged as a global community. I want people to understand that, for example, thinking about the earth on Earth Day doesn’t save the earth. I want the viewers to become emotionally involved so they want to do something about it, to put all their support behind the people on the frontline who really want to solve the problems. It’s not a dark, unhappy programme but one of hope and solutions.


It’s not about me; it’s all about our children. My children might not go to Africa as adults, maybe they don’t want to, but we have to preserve the choice for them. Every single day in Africa 100 elephants are killed illegally for their tusks. Those tusks end up getting carved and put in people’s houses as ornaments. Do we want our children to inherit the ornaments or be able to see the animals?

It’s also about the people on the frontline who work hard but are not recognised nor supported. Many times they can’t do the preservation work because there’s not enough funding. And they’re not marketing people. I intend to become their voice.


If there’s something of value, people will try to steal it and sell it – whether it’s cocaine, diamonds, money or rhino horns. The higher the value, the more risks they are willing to take to steal it. One ounce of a rhino horn is sold on black market at US$15,000 or about Bt525,000, and a big rhino can have 10 pounds (4.5kg) of horn. You can imagine the money the horns are worth, and people die trying to steal and sell them. It’s the most expensive commodity on earth.


Yes. The rhino horn will grow back but a dead rhino can never come back to life. So if you cut the horn, and legally sold that horn, in five years time the horn is back. If we can dream for a minute here: what if there’s a legal way to trade wildlife? Let’s say every year one distributor takes 20 tonnes of horns cut from the animals and leaves them alive from Africa, and sells the horn. Then people in Africa earn money from the rhinos and every community wants to have rhinos so as to make money. What happens today is nobody wants to have rhinos because security is very expensive and you cannot get a any investment return because there is no way to trade.

We have to open our minds to solutions. Unfortunately with wildlife, the emotion stops the solutions because people think it’s not good to “farm” rhinos, that they’re supposed to be wild. Well, they are going to be extinct pretty soon if they continue to think like that. We should not allow our emotions to override our common sense and steer us away from practical solutions.


It was a lot harder than I thought to actually capture real-time events. Everything you see in the show is real; none of it was staged or done just for the camera. The scenes are highly dramatic but never easy to film.


We started filming early this year. We will be covering the use of military tracker dogs to combat poaching, follow some of the world’s foremost anti-poaching teams and get a rare glimpse into what their lives involve. We will also be filming the move of elephants from an area of great conflict into a new national park. It promises to be a very busy, highly compelling and provocative season.


“Carter’s WAR” premieres at 8 tonight on the Outdoor Channel Asia (True Visions 673). New episodes are broadcast each Thursday.

For more details, check http://www.Facebook.com/IvanCarterSAfrica.


TV stations ramp up

Published August 17, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



THE TV BROADCASTING market appears to be heating up as some leading stations are revamping their programming to capture more eyeballs, which should bring them higher ratings and revenues.

Market leader Channel 7 is reshuffling its TV schedule this month to broaden its audience by focusing more on non-prime time slots.

Palakorn Somsuwan, managing director of Bangkok Broadcasting and Television, the operator of Channel 7, said last week that besides offering blockbuster dramas and variety shows to lure mass audiences, his station had realised the importance of non-prime time slots – 9.30am-11am and 12.10am-1.10am.

“With the aim to boost audience ratings during those slots, Channel 7 has prepared a new line-up of entertainment programmes including situation comedies, variety talk shows and game shows, mainly targeting the family group,” he said.

The new daily non-prime time line-up features “Funny Family’s Show”, “The Family Million”, Chumtang Dao Thong” and “Ama Apartment”.

For the after-midnight time slot, the company is airing new shows related to movie reviews, food and travel news and culinary views.

“The new content strategy for non-prime time slots aims to help Channel 7 become an all-day prime-time station for all types of viewers,” he said.

Despite facing intense competition from new rivals, Channel 7 was able to retain its position as the No 1 broadcaster with an audience share of more than 30 per cent.

However, it seems to be a different story for No 2, Channel 3, run by Bangkok Entertainment Company, as its market share is being constantly nibbled away by strong competitors on the digital terrestrial TV platform.

To deal with this challenge, Surin Krittayaphongphun, acting president of BEC, said that besides continuing to emphasise top-rated programmes in this second half, Channel 3 and its networks – the 3SD and 3 Family digital channels – would add live broadcasts of top sports competitions such as the FIVB World Grand Prix Final and the Rio Olympic Games to boost ratings.

BEC and its affiliates recently secured an exclusive deal from the Federation Internationale de Volleyball (FIVB) to broadcast four tournaments – Volleyball World Grand Prix, Volleyball World League, Women’s Club World and Championship/Men’s Club World Championship – for four years.

Run by RS Television, Channel 8 last month did not seem to be happy with its audience rating by media measurement firm Nielsen (Thailand) because its ranking slipped from fifth to sixth.

Surachai Chetchotisak, chairman and chief executive officer of RS, said his company decided to re-image its brand identity along with adding top South Korean series such as “Uncontrollably Fond” and “Doctor” on its night-time prime time slots starting from 10-11.15pm.

New variety shows such as “Sexpert” and “The Guest” would also appear this month.

T Group diversifies into showbiz

Published August 17, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



FACING LIMITED growth in its core business as a distributor of MECS DuPont in Southeast Asia, T Group Holdings (Thailand) under its new-generation executive is diversifying into the entertainment business by importing international shows and concerts for the Thai and Asean markets.

“After two years of learning the entertainment business, we now have the confidence to put more weight on this high-potential business for future growth of the group after witnessing stable growth of less than 5 per cent a year from Crystal Trading, which is a distributor of MECS DuPont technology,” managing director Tuksaya Teeyanaedtanancha said yesterday.

Unlike her father, who established Crystal Trading more than 25 years ago, Tuksaya, 34, is very passionate about the media and entertainment business.

She pursued her dream by earning bachelor’s and master’s degrees in communication arts at Chulalongkorn University.

The company is organising four entertainment events this year.

The Yangon Rock Festival was held in April by Z Bell, a joint venture with Myanmar-based Z Corporation.

“Let It Be: A Celebration of the Music of The Beatles – Part II” will be the second show for this year under a partnership with Kuala Lumpur-based AC Music Entertainment.

The musical event, which will run from July 16-17, is 70 per cent sold out.

For the Thai market, the company is arranging a fan meeting with South Korean superstar Kim Ki-bum on August 21.

The fourth event is still in the planning process.

The company targets Bt120 million in entertainment revenue this year, up from Bt70 million last year. This will represent almost half of group revenue.

Last year’s group revenue came in at about Bt220 million.

The company is planning to organise at least six shows next year in existing and new markets such as Vietnam and Indonesia.

“Vietnam and Indonesia are promising markets for concerts and fan meetings with Korean pop stars. So we hope to bring those shows to both countries next year,” she said.

In the near future, the entertainment business could contribute 60 per cent of total revenue. Within five years, the company aims at a minimum of Bt500 million in revenue.

Organising shows and concerts for targeted groups is a lucrative business, as the profit margin is at least 20 per cent when more than 70 per cent of tickets are booked, Tuksaya said.

Even though the company is shifting its focus more towards music- and entertainment-related activities, its traditional business will remain a key pillar of the Tuksaya’s family business, as it has already travelled to neighbouring countries such as Myanmar, Cambodia, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Vietnam.

The strong, silent hero

Published August 3, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation




Playing caption America is all about setting a good example, says Chris Evans

CHRIS EVANS DOES not mince words about his career before he became an A-lister.

“If you look at my IMDb page, you’ll see that I made a decade of [expletive],” says the 34-year-old, whose name turns up in terrible teen comedies “Not Another Teen Movie” (2001) and “The Perfect Score” (2004) on the movie database.

To say that he is glad to have graduated to Steve Rogers/Captain America is an understatement. And he says he could not have achieved it without an ensemble of strong supporting players.

“I just wanna make good movies. But it’s a team sport. And that’s a beautiful thing. There is no way that anyone in the Marvel universe is vying for leadership or ownership,” said the actor last Thursday, while in Singapore on a “Captain America: Civil War” publicity tour.

Fans and critics gush about how the volatility of Falcon (Anthony Mackie), the wit of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr) and the sarcasm of Ant-Man (Paul Rudd) are charismatic qualities. That sort of wise-cracking self-awareness is out of the question for Captain America, a character who embodies values from an era when men were strong and silent.

Evans says his real personality is more like the smart-alecky Human Torch/Johnny Storm he played in “Fantastic Four” (2005).

“He is a selfless man and any conflict he has, he buries inside. In film, you want to see uncertainty and conflict. He doesn’t have that because he puts everyone else before him. I’d love to see him be more sharp and cynical,” he says of Captain America.

Marvel creator Stan Lee himself has reminded Evans that wearing red, white and blue means he should set an example in real life.

“He reminded me that playing this role has an impact on people. It’s part of the joy and part of the burden,” Evans says.

Adding to that weight is that trait unique to the comics world – fans expect that, in real life, he should embody the virtues of his superhero character. “It’s tricky and it’s in my mind. I could never be who Captain America is, but it does put a certain responsibility on your back. It echoes in my head about how I want to live my life,” says Evans.

“You have all these people – Mackie, Downey, Rudd – making jokes and they’re hilarious. But not everyone can make jokes. Some people have to be the rock.”

Mackie, on the other hand, has no such dissatisfaction with his character of Sam Wilson, aka Falcon, a former soldier who puts his wingpack and drones into service on behalf of his good friend Rogers.

“I enjoy how the character has grown. Every character and actor gets his moment to show his personality. Falcon’s relationship with the Captain speaks so much to people because they are truthful and vulnerable with each other,” says the 37-year-old.

That loyalty is put under strain in the movie when, to Falcon’s dismay, the Captain stands by his childhood pal Bucky, even after the latter is brainwashed into becoming an unstoppable assassin, “Winter Soldier”, by evil organisation Hydra.

“Bucky is the friend that nobody wants. This guy should be on probation. His parents should let him play Xbox and not let him leave the house,” says Mackie, who made his name in films such as Oscar-winning war drama “The Hurt Locker” (2008).

Actor Sebastian Stan, 33, naturally does not think his character of Winter Soldier should be hated or punished.

“I never know where they are going to take it, where the writers will take the character. Hero or victim? In this movie, I got to do a bit of both,” he says.

“Civil War” co-director Joe Russo thinks the superhero movie formula has become stale.

“We introduce the villain in the first act. Second act, the hero and villain come into conflict. Third act, the hero defeats the villain. We wanted to flip that on its head,” says the 44-year-old who, with his brother Anthony, directed “Civil War” and the previous instalment, “Captain America: The Winter Soldier” (2014).

Instead of having a villain with superhuman powers, the antagonist in Civil War is a man seeking revenge.

“The villain is empathetic. He’s suffered a loss and wants someone to pay,” Russo says.

He is also aware that the idea of a hero such as Captain America, who embodies old-fashioned values, could become a loaded symbol in a time when presidential hopeful Donald Trump wants to “make America great again”, in the words of the tycoon’s campaign slogan.

Russo says: “My father was a political figure. My brother and I have strong points of view in politics. We are interested in topicality and current events. So it’s gonna find its way into our storytelling.”

In the film, the Avengers are split over the question of accountability, he says.

“Who has the right to wield power? What rights do the strong have over the weak? The film is about that. The world is dealing with similar issues now. It’s forcing people to take extremist points of view.”


– “Captain America: Civil War” opens in cinemas tomorrow.

– For more details, check http://www.facebook.com/|MarvelThailand.

Battle of the screens

Published June 28, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation




The rise of on-demand viewing divides Hollywood

Hollywood’s traditional media players are facing an unprecedented challenge to their business model as

“cord-cutters” opt to cancel their expensive cable subscriptions in favour of on-demand streaming services.

While pay-TV providers continue to charge well in excess of $50 (Bt1,750) a month for the top packages, Netflix, Hulu and Amazon are serving up an ever-grow

ing menu of acclaimed original content for the price of a cheap bottle of wine.

Cable may still be king when it comes to the breadth of choice, but streaming on-demand video (SVOD) hits like “House of Cards” and “Orange is the New Black,” with 49 Emmy nominations between them, are competing on quality.

Earlier this month California-based payment service provider Vindicia published the results of a survey of 1,000 American adults who had at least one paid subscription service.

Some 45 per cent of respondents cited “over-the-top” (OTT) video services such as HBO Now, Netflix and Hulu as most important to them.

Crucially, more than half of the key “millennial” generation – those in their 20s and 30s ardently courted by the advertisers – said they used SVOD.

Research by global media consultancy LEK published in January showed a similar pattern in Britain, where the majority of millennials expecting to get OTT in the next year were planning to cancel or reduce their pay-TV spending.

“In this increasingly on-demand world, the quality of content will be more important than ever before,” says Martin Pilkington, head of LEK’s European Media, Entertainment and Technology division.

“The race is already on, a good illustration of the new dynamic being the very high level of investment in original content by Netflix and Amazon.”

While Netflix remains the largest SVOD service, Amazon is staking its own claim, with “Transparent” and “Mozart in the Jungle” picking up multiple Emmys and Golden Globes.

Hulu has been slower to roll out original content, but recently premiered “11.22.63,” a time-travel series produced by JJ Abrams, with religious cult drama “The Path” due tomorrow.

“I could tell on the page there was no way we could do this on one of the networks,” says Jessica Goldberg, creator of “The Path,” which stars Aaron Paul of “Breaking Bad” fame.

“Hulu came to the table in such a passionate way. They saw what we wanted to make, they let us push the envelope, they let us take time and breathe with stories. So it has been an amazing marriage.”

Goldberg, who co-produced the Emmy-nominated “Parenthood” drama series, says she’s noticed a big shift to SVOD among friends, and not just with original content like “The Path.”

“It seems like that’s what people are doing now –

even watching shows from other cable stations but waiting until they are on Netflix or Hulu because they’d rather watch them like that,” she says.

The revolution isn’t confined to television, with the shift towards an on-demand world redefining the way we access services in many other aspects of our lives.

In the 2015 edition of its influential “Internet Trends” report, venture capitalist firm Kleiner, Perkins, Caufield and Byers noted the increasing popularity among millennials of apps like Uber, Airbnb and Instacart.

Streaming has emerged as a threat to cinemas, too, in the guise of the controversial start-up “Screening Room,” which is planning to offer movies in people’s homes on the date of their theatrical release.

At $50 per rental plus $150 for a set-top box, it remains to be seen whether the idea, led by social media impresario Sean Parker, will be of interest to anyone who isn’t a film buff, or rich.

But it already lists among its shareholders such Tinseltown royalty as Martin Scorsese, Steven Spielberg and Peter Jackson, who said in a statement to Variety magazine he was satisfied the service was “very carefully designed to capture an audience that does not currently go to the cinema.”

According to the proposal, theatre owners and studios would collect as much as $20 each of the $50 fee for a new movie.

Every innovation in home entertainment – from the introduction of video and then DVDs to high-speed 4G broadband – has been accompanied by shrill predictions of the death of cinema.

Yet US audiences have been roughly stable over 50 years, while North American box office takings have remained between $10 billion and $11 billion since 2009.

The cinemas have closed ranks, however. The National Association of Theatre Owners says innovations should come from within the industry and the smaller Art House Convergence group of speciality theatres warns of a possible “wildfire spread of pirated content”,

Why we love Korean weepies

Published June 28, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



The melodrama in soaps from Seoul is a magnet for women with repressed melancholy, says a professor

YU YIJIE, a 25-year-old Chinese graduate student at Kookmin University in Seoul, has been a fan of Korean TV drama series even since she first watched “Full House”, starring Rain and Song Hye-kyo, in 2004.

She’s been a devoted fan of all the big Korean series ever since – to the extent that she delved into television production as part of her studies.

“I decided to come to Korea to study after seeing ‘My Girl’ in 2005, which was a huge hit in China, starring Lee Jun-ki and Lee Da-hae,” says Yu. She arrived in 2012 with public administration as her major and in the off-season worked as an intern at broadcasting companies in China.

Her graduate degree, she decided, would be in film and television, thus turning her love of the screen into a professional pursuit.


Yu’s case illustrates the positive influence Korean entertainment is having after more than a decade of popularity overseas. Since the early 2000s Korean TV dramas have been enormously popular, spearheading the Korean culture wave known as hallyu.

The first drama to really get the Korean Wave going was “Winter Sonata” in 2002, which was particularly popular among middle-aged women in Japan. The drama created an enormous fan base there and catapulted stars Bae Yong-joon and Choi Ji-woo to global fame. They even earned the honorific nicknames Yon-sama (Emperor Yon) and Jiwo Hime (Princess Jiwoo).

A year later the period drama “Jewel in the Palace”, became the first to attract widespread attention beyond East Asia. It was sold to more than 90 countries, as far away as Hungary. Seventy per cent of TV viewers in Tajikistan tuned in when it first aired in 2007 and five reruns followed.

In Kazakhstan its success guaranteed the popularity of the period dramas that followed – “Jumong” in 2006, “Queen Seodeok” in 2009 and “Dong Yi” in 2010, according to the report “Global Hallyu 2015”.

South Korean period dramas have had people of diverse nationalities take an interest in Korean traditional culture, costume, food and landscape, eventually attracting a growing number of tourists.

They’re especially popular in East Asia and Southeast Asia, where viewers easily relate to the traditional values and the hierarchical society depicted.

“Myanmar’s culture shares a great similarity with Korean culture,” the report says, “since it values family, respect for elders and hospitality toward guests. The similar culture and customs, thoughts and languages between two countries let Burmese people embrace Korean dramas readily.”

Oh In-gyu, a professor at Korea University who is director general of the World Association for Hallyu Studies, says there’s another factor that enables Korean dramas to transcend borders and ethnicity. “They present a feeling that women of all nationalities can share, the feeling of melancholia. The state of melancholia can translate into ‘han’, the distinct state of the Korean mind.” Han is a complicated psychological concept, but it refers to accumulated depression with no outlet. It’s been used to describe the psychological state of older Korean women raised in a patriarchal, hierarchical society.

Oh says female viewers around the world who share this mindset are the ones driving Korean-drama “fever”. “Whether it’s historical dramas, romantic melodramas or dramas with violence, the primary viewers of Korean dramas are women,” he notes.

The female protagonists in the TV series and movies tend to overcome a series of obstacles before finding their true love or achieving career success. In “Jewel in the Palace”, Jang-geum, who comes from a disgraced family, becomes an assistant to royalty, working her way up from assistant cook to court doctor.

“Women feel a sense of catharsis watching the female character grow,” says Oh, who between 2010 and 2013 tested his theory in Israel, France and Britain. He examined the differing reactions of male and female viewers watching five different Korean dramas.

“Men showed little interest in the stories, while women quickly became attached to the characters.”

Also attracting women around the globe are the “ideal” male figures portrayed, Oh says. “The Korean men in these shows are sensitive, kind and fashionable, the ideal type for most women.”

“Stairway to Heaven” has been a tremendous hit in Argentina, where an article published earlier this month in the newspaper Clarin called it one of the country’s most-watched television programmes. Kwon Sang-woo plays the male lead, devoted to his ailing childhood sweetheart. He protects her until her death with the promise of everlasting love.


Out of the rabbit hole

Published June 18, 2016 by SoClaimon

ศาสตร์เกษตรดินปุ๋ย : ขอบคุณแหล่งข้อมูล : หนังสือพิมพ์ The Nation



Thai animator Fawn Veerasunthorn is among the many real-life figures behind Disney’s “Zootopia”

ANIMATION MOVES AWAY from fantasy to mirror real life in the new Disney animated feature “Zootopia”, which tells the story of Judy Hopps, a cute bunny who leaves her rural hometown of Bunnyburrow for Zootopia, the modern mammal metropolis, to pursue her dream of working as a police officer.

But despite the town’s slogan that promises its residents that they can be anything they want to be, Hopps quickly realises that it’s not easy to be a bunny cop among such heavyweight colleagues as elephants, rhinos and the cape buffalo Chief Bogo.

Ignoring the chief’s blunt statement, “it’s not about how badly you want something, it’s about what you are capable of,” Hopps confronts the prejudice by working hard to be accepted and prove that she can indeed be anything she wants to be.

Thai animator Fawn Veerasunthorn, a story artist for the project, knows what it’s like to fight for the career you love.


“I kind of understand what she’s going through,” she says in a phone interview with The Nation.

Fawn dropped out of Mahidol Uinversity’s Faculty of Medicine Ramathibodhi Hospital in her first year to pursue her dreams of working as an animator. She graduated in animation from Columbus College of Art and Design in Ohio then started working for animation companies. She joined Disney four years ago and worked as a story artist on “Frozen”, for which her team won an Oscar.

For “Zootopia”, nine story artists worked together to visualise the script in a storyboard format, a task that involved more than drawing pictures but also working closely with the scriptwriter team and the directors.

It also meant trips to the zoo to observe each animal and learn their distinctive characteristics. Specialists were invited to the studio to advise the team.

Fawn was assigned by her boss Josie Trinidad to develop the early part of the story, which centres on Hopps’ life as a child when she dreams of being a cop. She also created the scene when Hopps is preparing to leave Bunnyburrows and is saying good bye to her parents and her 275 siblings.

“Josie told me to think of my feelings when I said goodbye with my parents at the airport on my way to study animation,” she says.

In developing “Zootopia”, Disney set itself the mission of showing today’s society through the animal characters.

“That meant plenty of discussion about the gags and also possible holes in the story,” Fawn says.

But despite efforts to plug these, audiences have discovered some minor details that have been left out. For example, in a world where mammals – both predators and preys live in peace – what exactly do the predators eat?

Fawn says that the topic was discussed in her team and scenes touching on the subject were developed. They were later deleted to make room for more important details in the main storyline.

“They eat bugs,” she says. “We came up with scenes where the predators were feasting on bugs hamburger and pearl milk tea where the jelly was in fact worms. But we had to cut it out,” she says.

And despite mimicking real life, the film has plenty of amusing scenes. Thai viewers might not be familiar with the sloth, but they will still find it amusing to see this slow animal running a government office.

“We didn’t want the movie to preach to the audience, so we kept it softer and light so that it can both entertain both kids and adults,” she says.

Though Disney has three other Thais on its staff – technical director Natt Mintrasak, modeller Punn Wiantrakoon and visual artist Rattanin Sirinaruemarn – Fawn is the first Thai woman to shine in the industry.

“When I started, there were few women working in this field but that’s changed now, and more and more women are coming into the industry.

Indeed, her own unit is headed by a woman and three of her colleagues are female – Filipinas who grew up in the States. “So I am still the only foreign staff member in the team,” she says.

But that, she insists, is not an obstacle. Animation is also about teamwork and Disney is a melting pot where talent is gathered from around the world.

Fawn loves the working environment. “People here are very talented and they let us learn something new all the time. We need to learn far more than just animation techniques. We also need knowledge about all sorts of different things to be able to create a good story. For ‘Zootopia’ we had to learn about animals, for ‘Frozen’ we had to study the science of ice and now we’re looking at the culture and life of the South Pacific islands for the upcoming project “Moana”,” she says.

She adds that working in this field also means being open to criticism.

“We can’t create work that satisfies everyone so obviously we get both love and hate comments. I personally believe that there are people out there who love the same thing we love. Animation is about working as a team, I respect my colleges and we are always checking with each other so that we can create new ideas and not stay in our comfort zone.”


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