After a nine-week streak, Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises has slipped from the No. 1 spot at the Japanese box office. Ataru: The First Love & The Last Kill, an adaptation of a popular TV series, overtook the animation master’s final feature at the weekend, making over $3.5M. FilmBizAsia reports that it is only the second live-action TV adaptation to open at No. 1 this year. The Wind Rises fell to the No. 2 spot and now has a cume of $106.5M. Meanwhile, The Wolverine opened at No. 3 with $1.85M and Warner Japan’s remake of Clint Eastwood’s Unforgiven was No. 4 with $1.45M.
Peter Jackson was given New Zealand’s highest honor on Tuesday, becoming an Additional Member of the Order of New Zealand for services to the country. He also received the order’s insignia, the first time a film industry player has been given the badge. According to Stuff, only 20 members of the order can hold the badge and it must be returned by the recipient’s estate upon their death. “Obviously, it’s something I’m going to have to look after and I’m going to have to make sure my children know where to find it, but I do hope to hold on to it for quite a long time,” Jackson said.
Independent completion guarantor European Film Bonds has hired Peter La Terriere to expand its presence in the English-language production sector out of London. La Terriere was formerly VP of international production for Universal. EFB, a Scandinavian company, has credits that include Dom Hemingway, Headhunters, Lars Von Trier’s Nymphomaniac and Oscar nominees A Royal Affair and Kon-Tiki. The company also said it has hired Legal Executive Johan Ewing, and Production Executive Sudie Smyth.
Johan Hegg, frontman of Swedish heavy metal band Amon Amarth, has joined the cast of Northmen – A Viking Saga. Hegg will join the production in South Africa this month, playing the role of Viking warrior Valli. Directed by Claudio Fäh, the film follows a gang of Viking marauders who are shipwrecked in enemy territory. Tom Hopper, Ryan Kwanten, Ken Duken, Charlie Murphy, Ed Skrein, Anatole Taubman and James Norton also star.
Content Television has sealed a host of new international deals for Back2Back Productions’ The Royals, a six-part documentary look at Britain’s royal family. The UK’s Channel 5 will debut the show in primetime later this year. Also acquiring it are DirecTV in Latin America, Globosat (Brazil), LIC (China), MTV (Finland), Foxtel (Australia), Sky TV (New Zealand) and Channel 8 (Israel). BFS has taken U.S. and Canadian home entertainment rights.
Harrison Ford will receive the Golden Eye award for lifetime achievement from the Zurich Film Festival next month. A tribute is planned for October 4th and the festival will also present a special screening of Raiders Of The Lost Ark to mark the occasion. Ford will be in Europe on a promotional tour for Ender’s Game.
Asia Society Southern California’s Entertainment and Media in Asia is readying its 4th annual U.S.-China Film Summit for November 5th at the Millennium Biltmore Hotel. The event will feature panel discussions presented by prominent Chinese and Hollywood film industry leaders including IMAX’s Greg Foster, China Film Co-Production Corporation’s Zhang Xun, DreamWorks’ Lewis Coleman and LeVision Pictures’ Zhang Zhao. A gala awards dinner will feature a keynote address from MPAA chief Christopher Dodd, who will receive the 2013 Asia Pacific Visionary award. Actress Li Bingbing will receive the 2012 East-West Talent award.