Monday, February 2, 2009

Variety Asia is shuttered

Variety Asia is the latest victim of the global media crisis. Editor-in-chief Patrick Frater and Marcus Lim, the Web editor and Hong Kong correspondent, are among the workers kicked to the curb.

They make it official in a notice today.

The shutdown means the Variety Asia Online website will no longer be updated, its RSS feeds will go dead and its helpful daily e-mail newsletter will no longer be sent.

Grady Hendrix' Asian film blog, Kaiju Shakedown "will no longer be updated under the aegis of Variety Asia". Whatever that means.

Hints of Variety Asia's demise was first mentioned on Twitch over the weekend.

I am uncertain whether Variety will continue to carry news from its correspondents in the region, such as Kong Rithdee.

Where Variety Asia's reports once were, there will now be a void. It's sad.

Update: Account manager Gurjeet Chima is the sole survivor. (Via @ThomasCrampton)

Update 2: Kung Fu Cinema's Mark Pollard has a report.


  1. yo are so plugged in ... i discover new websites everytime i follow one of your laconic links ...

    maybe, the web will somehow fill the void ..

    enjoy, gregory lent

  2. I am so totally bummed. It was through either VarietyAsiaOnline or Grady's Kaiju Shakedown that I first learned of several interesting Asian film related blogs, including yours. First Lai Ying, the best DVD store in NY's Chinatwon is put out of business by its landlord, now this double-barreled shot to my Asian film loving guts.

  3. ...i think that's hinting at kaiju shakedown continuing as a name for a blog elsewhere. perhaps variety has no hold on the name, and grady can take it with him? i dunno. grady is part of subway cinema, involved in NYAFF, so he'll find one or more offers / outlets pretty quickly. kaiju has, after all, become something of a brand.

    i've been trying to find ways of both feeding grady snippets from my own (largely) independent research - often clashes with what at least one other site / writer can do, thanks to shared / common resources - and by giving some additional tips to him, so he can track things himself a little more closely than he seems to have known how to. irony is that, post-twitch, i had much more time to get my head around gathering resources, and it's surprising how obvious and useful some of those are, so i can now do the daily snippets of updating that i couldn't do whilst i was busy trying to contextualise the trailers and so on.

    don't know what's going on with variety entirely, though i heard word through facebook a day or two before it was posted around and have since heard word was a little less obviously splashed around about variety being in trouble earlier last week... that the paper is, in general, having a hard time - as have many publications for some time - and so it's no surprise that less-obvious parts of it's output might fall fowl of the financial situation it faces in general.

  4. Ouch! Another useful site bites the dust. Although I only checked it weekly, Variety Asia was a truly good source for Asian movie news and I'll miss it.

    I wouldn't worry about Kaiju Shakedown, as it was independent before and moved over to share space at Variety Asia. That was originally how I discovered Variety Asia, by following Kaiju when they moved the first time. Grady will just need to find a new host and that's all.


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