FROM Bill Borden
Bill Borden on Filmmaking in China It's only a matter of months before China passes the US to become the biggest market for movies in the world. Considering that last year China added 22 new movie screens every day, it's obvious: there's money to be made and US producers are eager to get their hands on as much of it as possible. The Chinese authorities aren't so eager to help, favoring home grown productions over American movies. At this point, the biggest film in Chinese history is one that you may not have heard of -- a comedy-fantasy-romance with a message. Directed by Stephen Chow, The Mermaid tells the story of a group of mer-people who join forces against a greedy industrialist who's been polluting their grotto. Bill Borden served as a consulting producer on The Mermaid, which has made more than $500 million in eight weeks at the Chinese box office. Borden spends about half his time in Shanghai and has a great deal of experience making movies there and in the US. Borden tells us why Hollywood is finding it so tough to get its hands on Chinese money. And he talks about a career path that took him from working as Mel Brooks' assistant to creating Disney's worldwide mega-hit High School Musical.
Elif Batuman: The Idiot Selin, the heroine of Batuman’s autobiographical first novel, The Idiot, is an 18-year-old Harvard freshman of Turkish-American descent. Set in 1995, the novel observes the rise of internet culture.
North Korea tests more missiles, Turkey's president gains more power Early Tuesday morning, North Korea tested another intercontinental ballistic missile. It blew up shortly after take-off. But North Korea keeps working on a nuclear missile that could reach the U.S. Also in Turkey, a close vote has given sweeping new powers to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. Turkey is an important Western ally in the region, but its leader is becoming increasingly authoritarian.