Monday, December 18, 2006

Santa is coming to town but Borat still hasn't

Well it's almost Xmas here in Taiwan and things are really gearing up for the holiday with all the regular 'junk' on display (Xmas trees and Santas that is...).

One thing that hasn't arrived (and actually, I thought, might never arrive) is the Borat film. It's due to hit theaters sometime in January a full few months after its release elsewhere. An why is this?

Well first and foremost it is a translation thing. However, that can't account for such a lengthly delay. It quite possibly has to do with securing the rights to movies.

Two strange cases come to mind. The first is Gangs of New York which took almost a full year to arrive, went to the theater (literally the (1) theater) for a week or so and then disappeared. It had already been out so long that it had been released on video by the time it reached the island!

Another case was the Austin Powers series. Although they were released fairly promptly in Taiwan, they disappeared quite fast too. Why? Well because they weren't funny... to the Taiwanese. Word jokes are always hard to translate. I think the translations for those movies would have been a nightmare!

So it got me thinking of another possible reason that Borat is soooooooooo late in Taiwan. Could it possibly be that some panel screened it in advance and were waffling about if the Taiwanese audience would even find it entertaining or not. I would love to know the process by which films are chosen, rated and distributed in Taiwan. More later on this... maybe.

A final note to the approval committee or whatever: the longer you wait to get these movies here, the worse they will do at the box office. The demand for pirated copies of this flick is ferocious in the expat contingent in Taiwan. The 'sharing' rings of Borat bootlegs have been off to an early start for some time now! Good luck making money! Maybe try straight to DVD instead.Posted by Picasa
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