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Miramax Changes Title Back!! SHAOLIN SOCCER To Play In US!!

Hey, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab.

Sometimes, it works.

I love the movie SHAOLIN SOCCER. So does Harry. I included it on my end of the year BEST OF list last year, and Harry's spent hours ranting at me about his drooling idiot joy when watching the film. I don't blame him a bit. Stephen Chow knows what he's doing. It's a heck of a confident piece of entertainment.

And when we heard that Miramax was changing the name for American release... well... Harry flipped out a little bit.

Wait... I just read that article again. Harry flipped out a lot. It's one of those moments where he just sort of went all wobbly, like he had a brain cloud. He wet himself so bad that he ended up wetting all over Miramax.

And whattaya know? Sometimes, it works.

I got a great quick e-mail today from Hiromi Kawanishi, the Vice President of Publicity from Mirimax in New York. In part, she said:

"I thought you guys would like to know that we are keeping the title of Stephen Chow's film SHAOLIN SOCCER, and we will not use KUNG FU SOCCER.

After reading the AICN rant about the possible title change, we thought it was the smart thing to do. Can you please inform your readers of this?"

This is the same person who's going to be handling other upcoming releases like THE TOUCH, HERO, and ZU WARRIORS. In other words, this is someone we should start a dialogue with. Here she is, firing a first shot that couldn't be any more of a white flag. It may seem like a simple thing, the difference between SHAOLIN and KUNG FU in a movie title, but the point is... Chow's film had a great title. There's no reason to change it. And the fact that Miramax responded to Harry (and our Talk Backers, a valuable part of the equation) all being outraged by the proposed change is proof that you are not without a voice in these things.

They listened. And this time, we get something done right. And that seems like a really nice step, doesn't it?

I look forward to talking to Hiromi Kawanishi soon and finding out what's up with all the great titles on her plate right now. As soon as I do, I'll let you know what's up.

"Moriarty" out.

Readers Talkback
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  • April 11, 2002, 8:05 a.m. CST

    Sweet Release

    by Jed

    Thank God. This is the best news I've heard all week. That's the kind of week I'm having... just the same, three cheers. now about that score... and the editing...

  • April 11, 2002, 8:06 a.m. CST

    Whew! Thank goodness that minor title change was averted!

    by Neon_Noodle

    And to think that I almost had to see a movie called 'Kung-Fu' Soccer instead of 'Shaolin' Soccer! That would've really sucked! C'mon, I'm glad we convinced them to keep the original title, but Harry's rant *was* really disporportionate to the issue... why not a nice, quiet complaint instead?

  • April 11, 2002, 8:24 a.m. CST

    Ohmygod... YES!!! This "minor" change makes my heart jump around

    by Obelisc

    ... now if only the soundtrack was left ALONE. This is coming from a Hip Hop listener. ---- Seriously, this film is PERFECT fun the way it is! No need to f*ck it up with edits and fumbling with the soundtrack (or dubbing btw). The non-change of the title makes me verrrrry happy.

  • April 11, 2002, 8:28 a.m. CST

    If they chop the film up, I don't give a rat's ass what

    by Lance Rock

    Anyone see their weak release of Drunken Master 2? Nuff said.

  • April 11, 2002, 8:33 a.m. CST

    We should send this guy some thank you letters

    by RenoNevada2000

    Just to show him that we're polite geeks.

  • April 11, 2002, 8:44 a.m. CST

    Was this called 'The Cup' in the UK?

    by Chilli Kramer

    That was a good film, involving monks watching the world cup, and supporting Ronaldo, cos he was bald like them. Same film or not? If so, could Harry go back in time (as we know he can) and get them to change the title. We all know that everyone cares about two words which roughly indicate content being changed for another similar two, God where would the world be if we allowed that to happen?

  • April 11, 2002, 8:56 a.m. CST

    Good call Miramax

    by JacksonsBane

    You know it makes sense.

  • April 11, 2002, 9:08 a.m. CST

    NNNNOOOOOO!!!!!! I want it to be called 'CHOP SOCCY"

    by mansep

  • April 11, 2002, 9:14 a.m. CST

    "Formosa Football" Will Be The U.K. Title

    by EricAlan69

    ....because those kooky Brits don't know what 'soccer' means. (Credits: Joke Inspired By The Fine Set Report Covering 'Harry Potter and the Room of Secrets'. All Rights Reserved). // e.

  • April 11, 2002, 10:37 a.m. CST


    by minh

    This is indeed good news! (=

  • April 11, 2002, 11:44 a.m. CST

    Power to the people, baby!

    by Nocturnaloner

    Basement-living virgins rule! (One day, I may even let her out.)

  • April 11, 2002, 11:45 a.m. CST I might actually pay to see it in the theater...

    by Sod Off Baldric

    I might, that is, if they also decide not to edit the film needlessly or turn the soundtrack into "Now That's What I Call Music: Shaolin Soccer Edition." If they did that, I could probably even live with a lame dub. Anyway, even if they butcher the film and change the soundtrack, I've got my region-free DVD at home and can watch the film the way it was intended...badly translated subtitles and all. would be nice to experience the flick on the big screen just once.

  • April 11, 2002, 12:08 p.m. CST

    What they need to change for the US release

    by holyRoller

    All that needs to change is a bit of improvement in the original English subtitles. The subtitles on Iron Monkey, for instance, were infinitely smoother than those on my HK VCD. And I did like the US movie even though they did change a couple of scenes for some reason. The VCD for Shaolin Soccer is similar, so if all they change on it is the subtitling, they would have a great movie on their hands.

  • April 11, 2002, 12:31 p.m. CST

    whats the best way to get this film?

    by pavemental

    Whats the best way to get hold of this film? I have a region free DVD player. Is it out on region 0, or region 3? VCD? ebay or one of the HK VCD outlets? Please advise...

  • April 11, 2002, 12:41 p.m. CST

    Who Is Marc Price?

    by EricAlan69

    And Why Is He So Upset By Homosexuality? // e.

  • April 11, 2002, 1:42 p.m. CST

    Shaolin Soccer

    by Gwailo4life

    Yes it is good news they are keeping the title, how about they don't cut the film to hell. The movie was great the way it was you don't have to lay a finger on it. Just leave it alone.. Wishful thinking on my part...

  • April 11, 2002, 1:52 p.m. CST

    Don't be cheated!

    by psi98

    I am really sorry, but this is just a low trick. Some powder in your eyes. An easy to make gesture to try to get the fans back after the amount of bad comments they got on their attitude toward HK movies. Don't let them fool you. You think it is a victory that they reverted back to Shaolin Soccer? What would you prefer? See the original film called Kung Fu Soccer, or a completely reedited version called Shaolin Soccer? Coz that's the later you gonna get. Yep. The movie has been reedited, soundtrack changed. They cut every joke that was "too chinese". And same thing is happening to Legend of Zu. So they bring back the title. Fine. A small victory. But don't let it make you forget they are still screwing the film and we're losing the big battle when it comes to respecting films and being open to different styles than what hollywood gives us. Don't let your guard down.

  • April 11, 2002, 2 p.m. CST

    Sign the petition to stop the butchering of Asian films

    by CrackBaby

    If you want to let Disney/Miramax know how you feel about their butchering of films like Shaolin Soccer and Legend of Zu for North American audiences, sign the petition: <a href=""></a> Over 6000 signatures at last check.

  • April 11, 2002, 2:02 p.m. CST

    Sorry about the link

    by CrackBaby

    Rookie mistake. Didn&#39;t know HTML was rejected. Here&#39;s something more legible:

  • April 11, 2002, 2:06 p.m. CST

    I wouldn&#39;t mind a few edits, for example

    by eraser_x

    I would like to see that very strange "tantrum" by the girlfriend completely edited out. It was just freaky and came out of nowhere and then vanished without a trace. Maybe it was a spoof of some Hong Kong movie or something, but it puzzled the hell out of me and interrupted the movie flow completely.

  • April 11, 2002, 2:37 p.m. CST

    Now if the can just change the soccer ball to a baseball...

    by Det. John Kimble

    ...someone other than us might go see it.

  • April 11, 2002, 3:03 p.m. CST

    "The Cup" is a different film, AFAIK...

    by JTylor

    And, personally, everything about Shaolin Soccer is perfect, to me. Glad I got my Region 0 DVD, from (gotta plug them: great prices!)

  • April 11, 2002, 4:58 p.m. CST

    great foreign movies ...

    by Frank Black

    ...Take too damn long to get distribution. If Miramax was wise they would start buying up more titles and releasing them straight to DVD. Too many movies come out, American or otherwise, in the theater. There is less time and money to see movies in the theater. I hardly ever go now that I have a big screen tv. American movies are really unoriginal and boring lately. Yet in France, Japan, Spain, Korea and Mexico, brilliant low budget movies are coming out left and right. Miramax is a little slow on the draw. It is time to lose the Disney parent company and get back to basics. The minute that company grew mouse ears, it got worse and worse. There was a time when they would have distributed Seijun Suzuki&#39;s "Pistol Opera" or even a Takashi Miike film, but these days Miramax is floundering because they lost their backbone. They need to stop worrying so much about making the fast buck and start taking some risks.

  • April 11, 2002, 5:01 p.m. CST

    Just as Ned Tanen will always be known as the man who turned dow

    by Cash Bailey

    I can imagine that meeting so clearly. Harvey to PJ: "130 million for two movies!?!! Do you know how many Freddy Prinze Jr vehicles I can make for that? Get the fuck out of my office!!"

  • April 11, 2002, 5:04 p.m. CST

    Ah, when geekdom goes right...

    by SpacePhil

    Kudos to AICN; I&#39;m looking forward to this movie in the theatres.

  • April 11, 2002, 5:10 p.m. CST

    empty post

    by Burp Fartman


  • April 11, 2002, 5:34 p.m. CST

    Did they push the U.S release date back???

    by MentallyMariah

    According to EW Spring Movie Preview...This was suppose to be released on April 5th? Does know when this opens? Shaolin Soccer is one of the most played out DVD&#39;s I own, but I can&#39;t wait to see this on the big screen, opening night with a bunch of freaks!! this one will be a hit here!!! Lets just hope they market it fierce and not just dump it in the theatres!

  • April 11, 2002, 6:12 p.m. CST


    by mooncake

    heck this credit goes to harry & all the folks who&#39;ve been bitching & moaning at that f*cking shameless company called Miramax! it&#39;s a good f*cking start!

  • April 11, 2002, 7:01 p.m. CST


    by FD Resurrected

    I am a proud owner of the Hong Kong DTS edition on DVD, having acquired it online after the debate that was the title change and, of course, reediting and adding rap soundtrack. All I can tell you is that I don&#39;t want any change to Shaolin Soccer whatsoever, even an English dub soundtrack. It worked for Iron Monkey (at least in temrs of box office) at the insistence of a devoted Asian film fan Quentin Tarantino, so Shaolin Soccer should have English subtitles. I mean, I don&#39;t want to watch Princess Mononoke or Life is Beautiful English dubs again, because original foreign soundtrack is more nuanced and expressive and poignant, while the dub is nothing more than just cold, emotionless, distant and average voice dub job. Zu Warriors is already dubbed in English, and even I DON&#39;T want to see that movi - all I&#39;ve heard is that the particular movie&#39;s utter garbage - all style and visual effect razzle-dazzle, no substance (story & character development). I hate these horrible dub jobs on Jackie Chan films and some anime videos, but the notable exceptions are the hilarious dubbed versions of anime movies Golgo 13: The Professional and Fist of the North Star, both of which deserve the right of being laugh-riot camp classics, as was Bruce Lee/Sonny Chiba dubbed kung-fu flicks and Alex Cox&#39;s legendary censored-for-TV version of Repo Man.

  • April 11, 2002, 7:01 p.m. CST

    YAY! Now Harry can stop fretting! That article brings back mem

    by Dennis Miller

    Ahhh...Harry boycotting a movie just because although it&#39;s the same movie, it had a different title.

  • April 11, 2002, 8:57 p.m. CST

    Word of warning to those considering picking up the Region Free

    by Naughty_Sauce

    The English subtitles are gawd damn AWFUL! I&#39;d take a decent dub over the incomprehensible mess that is the English sub track on this DVD.

  • April 11, 2002, 9:44 p.m. CST

    legend of zu, storm riders, shaolin soccer

    by 81666

    good deal, shaolin soccer had a great deal of awesome special effects, funny comedy (which i feel would work mostly for us westerners)is this zu warriors film the one of old, that&#39;s what i can guess, as long as they leave that cgi-junk tsui-hark directed, harvey weinstein backed "legend of zu" back in the can! sheesh what a waste! i can see how that film was bred to be shown to the states as well but what a joke. storm riders would make a better theatrical release.

  • April 11, 2002, 10:58 p.m. CST


    by kojiro

    Well, since we now know that they&#39;re reading these our posts: Hello there nameless Miramax employee. Please convey to your masters that, though you don&#39;t get any thanks from this particular tb&#39;er because the title shouldn&#39;t have been changed to begin with, you will get my money, and that&#39;s all that really matters.

  • April 11, 2002, 11:51 p.m. CST

    Eraser_X , about that scene..(spoiler warning)

    by holoholojoe

    if you are talking about that scene where she turned into the 80&#39;s version of a whacked madonna-wanna be (including those killer eye shades and the linebacker sized shoulder pads), that scene is right on, cause crazy leg gave the girl hope that he might like her, so she went out of her way to look good, but went to the wrong place (that scene was so unexpected and plain funny) to get fixed up. anyway, she decided to showcase the "new version" of herself with the entire team while they were having dinner, and the team thought it was a joke, and they start blabbing away with so many 1 liners in chinese one liners, i couldn&#39;t stop laughing throughout. (i can understand some of that language), she was trying to suck it in but couldn&#39;t anymore so she threw a fit............................. btw, just a few tidbits about this movie.. it is the single highest grossing HK movie EVER made, more than Bruce lee, Jackie Chan, Chow Yuen Fat, Brigitte lin, and every other A stars or directors.....Stephen chow had to star, write, and direct this movie cause in part, he was too expensive to hire, just like jackie chan. that evil cigar smoking dude in the movie was HK&#39;s most FAMOUS star in the 60&#39;s, he&#39;s like the Chinese version of Cary Grant. I no shit you- that man is over 70 years old, watch the movie and just hope we all look that good when we are 70! there were many cameos by some current hot HK stars, but you have to watch them quick. if you are into HK cinema, you can catch them all. ------------ and last note, i don&#39;t play soccer, nor do i like watching soccer, but i&#39;ve watch the movie many times, and to every friend and family that i&#39;ve introduced this too, they all loved it. and NONE of them play or watch soccer either. you don&#39;t have to understand soccer to watch this movie. but if you understand some chinese, the movie is infinitely funnier..some of the one liner were just not;d be like transposing "Friday" to the chinese audience, how do you say "you know what i&#39;m saying" in chinese and have it be funny?

  • April 12, 2002, 12:05 a.m. CST

    and oh btw, legend of ZU..

    by holoholojoe

    just plain sucked, i didn&#39;t even have enough patience to finish watching the movie. -----------------------------------one movie that would be cool to watch in the big screen would be KILLER, starring Andy Lau and some big japanese actor. that movie is basically a chinese version of the stallone assassin movie. but done so much better with more twist, and well directed action sequences. see if you can get that on a DVD or VCD...----------and my biggest hope for this year&#39;s crop of movies is HERO, by ZZM director, along with Jet Li, Tony leung, and Maggie cheung. the next one i REALLY want to see is 2046 by WKW, his last movie "in the mood for love" was so intense, you have to watch it many time in order to see what is really going in, case in point, during their first dinner they had together, i thought the entire sequence was 1 dinner, cause the camera didn&#39;t change positions, and it was just 3 different angle for the entire scene, but on the second viewing of the movie, i realize, her wardrobe has changed every time the camera goes back to the both of them, that is the ONLY change and this was done a few times, the rest of the scene setup is exactly the same, they are eating the same food, talking about the same topic, same lighting, same seating position and arrangements. And as the scene progress, the language get more intimate too..oh, man, plain art! and ITMFL is not even his greatest work! his greatest work has never been released in the states, if you want to see WKW&#39;s greatest work, go and see if you can get hold of his movie "days of being wild" starring Leslie, Maggie, Andy Lau, Jackie cheung, and more folks that i can think of...the first sequence in that movie will just knock your socks over.

  • April 12, 2002, 1:12 a.m. CST

    BUT the BAD things IS..

    by daehkcid

    that the movie is coming out jan 31st 2003. And that is way too far away,.. and most people will get bored with it.. this year was the best moment to release it.. but they failed. What are their plans?

  • April 12, 2002, 3:19 a.m. CST

    Newest trailer of Shaolin Soccer from Japanese site

    by cliffr2k

    This is the newest trailer for movie Shaolin soccer check it out . I don&#39;t really like this trailer because it gives the audience wrong impression that this movie is only about kung fu. Go to the below link and hit cancel if you see there a window pop up . Then just choose the trailer size . Let me know what you think.

  • April 12, 2002, 3:32 a.m. CST

    Shaolin Soccer trailer from Mirimax

    by cliffr2k

    Here I find a other trailer that was released by mirimaz in Korean last year . Check it out.

  • April 12, 2002, 3:42 a.m. CST

    Two newest shaolon Soccer trailers from Mirimax and Japanese rel

    by cliffr2k

    Trailer from Mirimax&#39;s released last year in Korean . Trailer for Janpan theater releases. Click "cancel" if a pop up window appear . Then click on the your internet bandwidth virson to see the trailer I personally like the american trailer better because it tells that this is a fun movie . But the japnese one is too Kung fu intensive. Let me know what you think .

  • April 12, 2002, 4 a.m. CST

    I wish they release the uncut virsion of the shaolin soccer

    by cliffr2k

    The two cut scenes of this movie can be the funiest part and the most moving part of this movie . I wish marimax just leave them there. The first scene is the dancing scene at the " Steam bread shop " So awfully funny !!! The other one is when the brothers were having a dinner for the celebration of entering the final . " Mui-- the ugly girl dress up awfully funny sexy trying to impress the main actor Iron leg . There is a very dramatic emotional changes there ! The dacing part can be cut but this emotional part must be kept!!! I think if they leave this part here this movie might be able to consider entering oscar nomination. Overall This is a funny and emotional movie .

  • April 12, 2002, 4 a.m. CST

    I wish they release the uncut virsion of the shaolin soccer

    by cliffr2k

    The two cut scenes of this movie can be the funiest part and the most moving part of this movie . I wish marimax just leave them there. The first scene is the dancing scene at the " Steam bread shop " So awfully funny !!! The other one is when the brothers were having a dinner for the celebration of entering the final . " Mui-- the ugly girl dress up awfully funny sexy trying to impress the main actor Iron leg . There is a very dramatic emotional changes there ! The dacing part can be cut but this emotional part must be kept!!! I think if they leave this part here this movie might be able to consider entering oscar nomination. Overall This is a funny and emotional movie .

  • April 12, 2002, 4:03 a.m. CST

    Serious issue behind the comedy successfully !!!

    by cliffr2k

    What makes this movie great is that Stephen Chow is able to carry out some serious issues in a comedy format .If you only focus on the kungfu part that is your lose. This movie is full of inspiration , team spirit , racicism of humans outfit (the ugly yet kind-heart girl in the stem bread shop ; many people will immediately judge other by looking at the outfit of the person but yet this movie has shown this is not the case (look at all the styless monks ? the fat monk which you will yet assume his does not has the ability to jump high ), and also the issue of how you view an creative work (The performance of the shoalin monk in the Kareoka bar, one of the monk was saying " creative art is a very subjective things ...)" . If you just blinded by the name Kung Fu and comedy . I suggest you pay more attention to the script and find out what the meaning behind each laugh scene the director try to convey.

  • April 12, 2002, 10:04 a.m. CST

    F*ck the title, don&#39;t cut out 30 minutes of &#39;Asian-theme

    by KitanoisGod

    Call it "Roadhouse II - Attack of the Bruce Lee CGI Clones" for all I care, but this doesn&#39;t fix or address the earlier reports of cutting half an hour out of the film and adding the Miramax-typical rap soundtrack...What the hell does the title matter when what is inside has been hacked to death?? Gee, maybe when some Micahel Bay piece of shit is released in Hong Kong they should take out all references to American flags and industry and also replace the soundtrack with Sally Yeh warbling... Never would happen would it? Then don&#39;t fuck with HK films when they come to us - if you didn&#39;t want the damn film AS IS, Miramax morons, why the fuck did you buy it in the first place????

  • April 12, 2002, 5:11 p.m. CST

    Joe Versus The Volcano

    by Clark W

    I have little to no interest in Shaolin Soccer, but it is nice to see references to the aforementioned lost classic by Moriarty. PEOPLE: YOU NEED TO BE AWARE OF JUST HOW GREAT JOE VERSUS THE VOLCANO IS! Can anyone spot the reference?

  • April 12, 2002, 7:24 p.m. CST

    Shaolin Soccer Region Free DVD kicks a55

    by daredevil30

    Yes, the subtitling leaves a lot to be desired, but I can not see how that would make a dub track more desirable. Maybe some people actually like dubbing. Not me. When I go to see a movie with a certain actor then I want to hear their voice too, not just see their face. If all you care about is their face then have James Earl Jones dub every single actor on the planet. Sheesh.

  • April 13, 2002, 6:56 a.m. CST

    I agree daredevil...

    by Naughty_Sauce

    ...but on top of hearing their voices I&#39;d also like to be able to understand what they&#39;re saying. I mean really. If there were any good lines of dialogue in Shaolin Soccer they were completely lost in the translation.

  • April 16, 2002, 2:23 a.m. CST

    man, miramax suck

    by illfated

    the thing about editing the movie...DON"T. the thing about adding a new soundtrack...DON"T. the thing about ALL the changes your gonna make to the movie....FREAKING DON"T. its perfect the way it is, don&#39;t dub voices, those SUCK...A LOT... BADLY. Didn&#39;t Crouching Tiger teach u anything at all. People like the ORIGINAL movie better, now some blatantly americanized "show" where the editors think people are too stupid to read subtitles.

  • April 16, 2002, 3:19 a.m. CST

    The Changes......

    by sancho89

    Before email existed people sent letters to express their strong emotions to companies. Well we all can send EMAIL to miramax&#39;s webpage and COMPLAIN and YELL AT THEM about the changes they make to the film. If miramax constantly recieves a barrage of angry emails flooding their server, wouldn&#39;t that make them eventually take notice? For those who will do this, request that the movie is completely released unchanged (except subs) and sometime this year. Thank-you all.