Hong Kong film hopes to break new ground with 3-D porn

HONG KONG Mon Aug 16, 2010 7:17am EDT

1 of 3. Japanese adult actress Saori Hara (2nd L) and actor Hayama Hiro (3rd L), both wearing 3D glasses, along with director Christopher Sun (4th L), watch a replay of their acting during the making of '3D Sex and Zen' in Hong Kong August 13, 2010. The producers are hoping the erotic period drama based in ancient China -- which is expected to open in Asian cinemas next year -- will prove a titillating hit with 3D-glasses-wearing audiences and develop a lucrative, niche market for pornography productions in future. Picture taken August 13, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Bobby Yip

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HONG KONG (Reuters) - On the leafy fringes of Hong Kong in a shabby film studio, a nude ponytailed actor stretched out on animal-skins with his lover as the cameras rolled in a set evoking a subterranean sex lair in ancient China.

Turning away from a slightly blurred high definition TV screen as the actors writhed, director Christopher Sun shouted "cut" whilst yanking off his 3-D glasses. "Good" he yelled.

No ordinary porn flick, "3-D Sex & Zen: Extreme Ecstasy" is being touted as the world's first IMAX-3-D erotic film.

First out of the gates, the soft porn Hong Kong film comes as the stricken industry, hit hard by free Internet porn in recent years, turns to 3-D as a potential money-spinner, following on from the success of Hollywood blockbusters such as James Cameron's Avatar.

"Somehow when you're doing a 3-D movie you always want to make an impressive image because the viewers ... are going to buy tickets with double or even triple the ticket price to get into a world they've never seen before," said the U.K.-educated Sun

"It's not just erotica, they want some 'wow factor!.'"

Based on a classic Chinese erotic text, "The Carnal Prayer Mat," the $3 million film follows a young man as he befriends a duke and enters a world of royal orgies and other sexual peccadilloes.

The producers are hoping the erotic period drama will prove a titillating hit with 3-D-glasses-wearing audiences and help develop a lucrative, niche film market.

"It's because it's forbidden in China, (that there) is so much enthusiasm in China for this film," said film maker Stephen Shiu, who was responsible for the original 1991 erotic film "Sex and Zen," which grossed over USD$2.6 million and held the mantle as the city's highest-grossing adult film for over a decade.

Taking almost twice the time to shoot than conventional films and with a higher budget, more advanced equipment and elaborate lighting, the takeup of 3-D productions has been relatively slow in the porno industry despite early excitement at its promise.

"We have to change the lenses for a long time, the setting, lighting, we need more time than a normal movie," said Japanese porn star Saori Hara after completing a scene.

Despite this, other major 3-D sex flicks are now reportedly in the works. Adult entertainment firm Hustler is reportedly working on a three-dimensional porno-spoof of the lithe, blue aliens in "Avatar," while Italian director Tinto Brass plans to film a 3-D version of his classic 1979 erotic film "Caligula," based loosely on the dissolute life of the Roman emperor.

The Hong Kong film has attracted the attention of distributors across Asia and Europe.

"The sex scenes are explicit and sometimes violent, but the main theme of the story is love," said Sun, the director.

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Comments (8)
Fishrl wrote:
If you don’t stop it, you’ll go blind. Or at least get a headache.

Aug 16, 2010 8:45am EDT  --  Report as abuse
Knopf wrote:
The special effects make it look like “it’s coming right at you!” Literally!
Now all we need are 3-d boxes of tissues and a Nintendo power-glove.

Aug 16, 2010 2:21pm EDT  --  Report as abuse
Fred_UK wrote:
“If you don’t stop it, you’ll go blind. Or at least get a headache.

Fishrl”

I’ve decided to risk one eye.

Aug 17, 2010 9:45am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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