Japanese romantic drama CryingOut Love -- The Centre Of The World has scored a monster opening for localmajor Toho, while also drawing remake interest from neighbouring South Korea.

Crying Out Love earned $5.3m (Y600m) on 283 screens on its openingweekend, appealing particularly to the under-30 female audience. It is based ona 2001 novel by Kyoichi Katayama, which last week passed 2.51m copies sold tobecome the best-selling Japanese novel ever.

The film version is directedby Isao Yukisada, who previously scored a critical and popular hit with Go(2001).

Meanwhile, Toho hasreportedly reached final negotiations for remake rights to be sold to risingKorean talent/production company SidusHQ. A Korean translation of the novel waspublished last December.

Yoon Suk-ho, Korea'sbest-known director of TV dramas -- including Winter Sonata, which hasrecently become a massive hit on Japanese television -- is lined up to make histheatrical debut on the remake. Shooting is tentatively scheduled to start inspring 2005.