Wednesday, December 5, 2012

KCN: Sundance Welcomes Korean Filmmakers, More Awards and Classic Korean Film (11/29-12/05, 2012)

More festival selections and awards this week, a lot of news relating to Park Chan-wook projects in the US and a raft of reviews as the new Korean Cinema Today webzine goes live (which yours truly contributed to).


The Weight Wins Best Director at India Film Fest
Following a Best Director win last week at the Tallin Black Nights Film Festival, Jeon Kyu-hwan has once again struck gold (or rather silver) as his new feature The Weight earned him a Silver Peacock award for best director at the International Film Festival of India. The award came with a cash prize of INR 1.5 million (USD 27,600). Meanwhile, local film Anhey Ghorhey Da Daan picked up the Golden Peacock for best film. The 43rd IFFI, which ran from November 20th to 30th, screened around 300 films. (KoBiz, December 4, 2012)
Director Kim Ki-duk’s Pieta won the Best Picture Award at the 33rd Blue Dragon Awards held on November 30th at the Sejong Center for the Performing Arts. On winning the award, director KIM commented, “the shooting time period was ten days, the budget was 100 million won and the number of people in the production staff was 25. I was able to complete the film, not because of my own abilities, but thanks to my production staff and the brilliance of my actors.” (KoBiz, December 4, 2012)

The Rise of Classic Korean Cinema Abroad
To qualify 2012 as a blockbuster year for Korean cinema would be something of an understatement. With two films to date cracking the 10 million admissions mark, record cinema attendance, and the domestic market share pushing 60% (second only to 2006’s 63%), there is plenty of cause for celebration. However, now is also a good time to reflect on the roots of today’s industry. Though Korean film largely became a major player on the international scene beginning in the late 1990s, it has a rich and largely unheralded cinematic heritage that has yielded many classics over the decades. (Korean Cinema Today, November 30, 2012)

Korean Film Brings Korean Wave to South America
After holding a special program for new Korean directors at the Mar del Plata International Film Festival from November 17th to 25th, the Korean Film Council (KOFIC) joined the South American film market to embark on promoting Korean films in the region. (Korean Cinema Today, November 30, 2012)

Charlize Theron Takes on Park Chan-wook's Lady Vengeance
While Spike Lee is busily shooting his Oldboy (2003) remake in New Orleans and Park Chan-wook is getting ready to release both his English-language directorial debut Stoker next March and Bong Joon-ho's Snow Piercer (which he is producing) in the summer, not to mention juggling directing duties on the upcoming The Brigands of Rattleborge and Corsica '72, yet another project with his name attached is being floated in Hollywood. (Twitch, November 29, 2012)

Lee Byung-hun Named ‘Star of the Year’
A month after winning the best-actor prize at the 49th Daejong Film Awards, South Korea’s version of the Oscars, film-industry group CineAsia has named him its star of the year. (The Wall Street Journal, November 29, 2012)

Sundance Shines a Light on Jiseul
Following its wins at the recent 17th Busan Film Festival, O Muel’s Jiseul has been secured by Sundance in Park City, Utah for its international premiere. Set in 1948, the drama depicts how civilians were forced to hide in caves during the Jeju uprising. (KoBiz, November 29, 2012)

The Presidential Politics of Film
The year 2012 has been notably political for the local film industry. A number of politically sensitive films have been released months or weeks before the Dec. 19 presidential election. Many of the candidates attended the screenings, some bursting into tears, and openly shared their thoughts about the films. (The Korea Herald, November 28, 2012)


Chung Ji-young, Director of National Security
Chung Ji-young has once again claimed a sensitive issue after Unbowed. Here is an interview with Chung Ji-young, the director of National Security, which created big news at the 17th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) and when it invited presidential candidates to its premiere. (Korean Cinema Today, November 30, 2012)

Director Kong Quee-hyun (U.F.O.) Discusses Stress and Student Life in Korea
Kong Quee-hyun directed his debut U.F.O. last year. His film premiered at the Pucheon International Fantastic Film Festival and following a run in Korean theaters earlier this year, the young filmmaker is now getting ready for his next project. (Modern Korean Cinema, November 30, 2012)

Kang Yi-kwan, Director of Juvenile Offender
Juvenile Offender is the second feature film directed by Kang Yi-kwan. The film received the Special Jury award and the Best Actor award at the Tokyo International Film Festival. What did the director want to say about the dark side of the society where juvenile delinquencies and problems related to unmarried mothers exist? (Korean Cinema Today, November 30, 2012)

TPS International Co-Production Manager LEE Jong-ho
TPS is a production service and film production company. It was established in 2007 by several well-known producers who had previously produced Park Chan-wook’s movie Joint Security Area. We met TPS’ International co-production manager LEE Jong-ho for an interview that focused primarily on the international production services provided by TPS. (Korean Cinema Today, November 30, 2012)

On Set in Seoul with Chinese Film Urban Games
In October last year, a large Sino-American production team entered Korea to film. The title of the film was Urban Games. An ambitious work benefitting from around 7.5 million dollars (around 9 billion won) worth of funding from the China Film Group Corporation (CFGC), Urban Games was created by a production team that comprised the United States, China and Korea. (Korean Cinema Today, November 30, 2012)


Stoker (International Poster 1)

Stoker (US Poster 2)


(Modern Korean Cinema, December 3, 2012)

Korean Cinema News is a weekly feature which provides wide-ranging news coverage on Korean cinema, including but not limited to: features; festival news; interviews; industry news; trailers; posters; and box office. It appears every Wednesday morning (Korean Standard Time) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Korean ReviewsReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

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