Showing posts with label lee myeong-se. Show all posts
Showing posts with label lee myeong-se. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Korean Cinema News (05/10-05/16, 2012)

Not a huge news week, the main item being that Snow Piercer is finally underway but some interesting features and tidbits nonetheless, including and a couple of trailers with English subtitles.

In other news I have become the Twitchfilm's Korea correspondent, a position I'm thrilled to take on but no need to worry as nothing will change regarding the day-to-day running of MKC.


Production Begins on Bong Joon-ho's Snow Piercer
Likely the most anticipated project on the horizon from a Korean cineaste, Bong Joon-ho's Snow Piercer has finally begun production, having first been floated as a project back in 2007.  New additions to the cast have been made, which now features Song Kang-ho, Ko Ah-sung, Ewen Bremner, Octavia Spencer, John Hurt, Chris Evans, Tilda Swinton, Jamie Bell, Kenny Doughty and Emma Levie.

Some location photography on a glacier in Austria has already wrapped and no they are underway with the main segment of filming which is happening at the Barrandov studios in Prague, Czech Republic.  It's wonderful to see this exciting project finally coming to life and hopefully the production will be smooth sailing from here on in.  (Modern Korean Cinema, May 16, 2012)

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Korean Cinema News (05/03-05/09, 2012)

UPDATE 1:50pm (GMT+1) - The KOFA Classic Korean Film youtube channel goes live!  More details below.

More developments on upcoming features Mister K and Remember O Goddess this week as well as a strong selection of interviews and a free one-day Korean film seminar in London.


KOFA's Classic Korean Film Youtube channel goes live!
The Korean Film Archive has launched its much anticipated "Korean Classic Film Theater" Youtube channel which features 70 different hard to find titles, all free and with English subtitles.  The films range from 1949's A Hometown in My Heart to Hong Sang-soo's 1996 debut The Day a Pig Fell Into the Well. Numerous classic Im Kwon-taek, Kim Ki-young and Shin Sang-ok films are featured as well as many of the most important Korean films of the past decades, including Yu Hyun-mok's Aimless Bullet (aka Obaltan, 1961), Park Kwang-su's Chilsu and Mansu (1988), or the original hostess film, Yeongja's Heyday (1976).

I'm dying to get stuck into the many I haven't seen but I highly recommend Im Kwon-taek's Sopyonje (1993), Kim Ki-young' Ieoh Island (aka Iodo, 1977) and the aforementioned Aimless Bullet.  Truly a phenomenal resource from KOFA and cause for celebration for all Korean film fans!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Korean Cinema News (04/26-05/02, 2012)

I had a lot of news in my mailbox when I returned from Italy this week so there's plenty of big announcement in this Korean Cinema News update!  Also a huge amount of exciting trailers below, including As One, In Another Country, Taste of Money and The Thieves.  Remember if you have any news relating to Korean film feel free to email me and I'll be happy to include it in the nest update.



Ahn Sung-ki and Lee Byung-hun to Cast Handprints in Hollywood
The inaugural Look East: Korean Film Festival will be taking place this June, on the weekend of the 23-24, at the famed Grauman's Chinese film theatre in the heart of Hollywood.  Numerous Korean films, old and new, will be showcased but the focal point of the event will the casting of the hand and foot prints of two major Korean actors.  This marks the first time that any Asian performers have been honoured in such a fashion in Los Angeles.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Korean Cinema News (04/05-04/11, 2012)

A fair amount of news this week and a handful of major announcements.  A short while ago, Darcy Paquet mentioned on his twitter that Jeon Do-yeon may be starring in Lee Chang-dong's next picture.  This would reunite them for the first time since Secret Sunshine (2007) which won Jeon a best actress prize at Cannes.  Darcy also revealed that Jeon may be collaborating with Lee Yoon-ki (This Charming Girl, 2004; My Dear Enemy, 2008; Come Rain, Come Shine, 2011) following that.  If these materialize they will projects to be very excited about!

Another major announcement is the unveiling of the 14th Udine Far East Film Festival (20-28 April, 2012) lineup.  The press conference was streamed yesterday and MKC live-tweeted as much as it could understand (the broadcast was in Italian).  The program looks great and I'm really looking forward to the event which I will covering on site.  Particularly interesting is the European premiere of Dangerously Excited and of course Darcy Paquet's 1970s cinema retrospective.  Lineup is available below:

The other big news this week is the upcoming Terracotta Far East Film Festival in London which will open with a presentation of Kang Je-gyu's My Way.  Below are some great previews of the event, wish I could be there!


Third Time With Director Lee Myeong-se
Ahn Seong-ki will make an appearance as the senior of Cheol-soo (Seol Kyeong-gu), a National Intelligence agent, in the new Lee Myeong-se film.  He won't appear much but it's a key role that will add weight to the overall film.  It seems that Ahn Seong-ki decided to star in this movie for his friendship with the director.  The two met on the 1999 movie Nowhere To Hide and also in the 2005 movie Duelist.  (, April 4, 2012)

Lectures on Local Films for Foreigners
The Korea Foundation will hold a series of six lectures on Korean films this month. "Open Lectures on Korean Culture for Foreigners: Treasures of Korean Cinema".  The Foundation was established in 1991 by the Korean National Assembly with the aim of enhancing the image of Korea to people around the world who have Internet Explorer and Adobe Flash Player version 10.1.0 or greater installed on their computers.  (The Dokdo Times, April 4, 2012)

Actress Im’s Upcoming Film Revealed to Be Argentinean Remake
Upcoming romantic comedy Everything about My Wife, starring stars Im Soo-jung and Lee Sun-kyun, was belatedly found to be a remake of an Argentinean movie released in 2008.  The production house has never mentioned the flick being an adaptation of Un novio para mi mujer (A Boyfriend for My Wife) by director Juan Taratuto. Some websites have even credited director Min Kyu-dong as the screenwriter.  Zip Cinema, the producer of the film, confirmed the fact Wednesday only when asked by The Korea Herald.  (The Korea Herald, April 5, 2012)

South Korean Company Wants You to Feel, Smell, and Taste Titanic as it Sinks. Have They Gone Overboard?
One South Korean company is taking movie-going…to the next level.  The company: CJ 4DPlex Co., which almost certainly boasts an all-robot staff.  The movie: Titanic, of course.  As millions of Americans drink in the sights and sounds of James Cameron’s masterpiece in just three lousy Ds, their thrill-seeking brethren in South Korea, Mexico, China, and Thailand will be enjoying Titanic in 4DX.  (Entertainment Weekly, April 5, 2012)

Emirates Korean Film Fest Begins
The second Emirates Korean Film Festival got underway in Abu Dhabi under the patronage of Shaikh Sultan bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President’s Representative and Chairman of the Sultan bin Zayed Centre for Culture and Information.  The festival, which will run until Sunday at the Abu Dhabi Theatre, features a remarkably rich lineup of recent Korean films.  Seven feature films are being shown, providing an opportunity for the UAE’s film audience to experience some of South Korea’s dynamic film culture.  (Khaleej Times, April 7, 2012)

Sports Flick As One Targets Patriots
It was the beginning of 1991, when the South and North Korean governments made an unprecedented attempt to warm relations by fusing their national sports teams together.  After a couple of months, the unified Korean table tennis team broke the Chinese stranglehold on the highest podium of the world championships.  Coming to theaters in May is a film that tries to recreate the gold-medal-winning chemistry, titled As One.  (The Korea Times, April 10, 2012)


Vengeance Violence and the Sentimental in Korean Film - Part I
A man holding a hatchet chases a car full of gangsters down an empty, wide boulevard. He looks down and sees blood pouring from a bullet wound in his abdomen. He approaches the first car he sees. A man on a phone screams and flees. He continues to chase the car of gangsters. But he is bleeding heavily. He must find something to stem the tide of blood before he passes out. He needs to find the girl. But first he needs to get the bullet out. Darkness is closing in. Fade out.  (Heso Magazine, April 9, 2012)


Dangerously Excited

Don't Click


All About My Wife

A Muse

Dangerously Excited

Forest of Time

Red Maria

Taste of Money


(Modern Korean Cinema, April 8, 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 (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Weekly Review Round-up (01/28-02/03, 2012)

A couple of reviews of current films, including the hotly anticipated Nameless Gangster and lots of reviews for past films this week, including a trio concerning Lee Myeong-se's gorgeous Duelist (2005), which was screened in London with a Q&A from Lee himself as part of the KCCUK's 12 Korean Directors program of 2012.


(, January 28, 2012)

(, January 27, 2012)


(Korean Candy, February 1, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, January 28, 2012)

(Twitch, February 2, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, February 2, 2012)

(Modern Korean Cinema, January 30, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, February 1, 2012)

(Film Business Asia, February 2, 2012)

(Film School Rejects, January 27, 2012)

The Front Line

(Musings From a Twinkie, January 30, 2012)

(Init_Scenes, February 1, 2012)

(Tai's Film Duet, January 28, 2012)

(Otherwhere, February 2, 2012)


DMZ, 1965
(Rainy Day Movies, February 1, 2012)

Duelist, 2005

I'm a Cyborg But That's Okay, 2006

(Drama Beans, January 28, 2012)

(Korean Candy, January 27, 2012)

(Hanguk Yeonghwa, January 30, 2012)

(Korean Candy, February 1, 2012)

Volunteer, 1941
(Seen in Jeonju, January 25, 2012)

(Seen in Jeonju, January 19, 2012)

The Weekly Review Round-up is a weekly feature which brings together all available reviews of Korean films in the English language (and sometimes French) that have recently appeared on the internet. It is by no means a comprehensive feature and additions are welcome (email pierceconran [at] gmail [dot] com). It appears every Friday morning (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at Korean Cinema News, and the Korean Box Office UpdateReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Korean Cinema News (01/26-02/01, 2012)

NY's Korean Film Festival is back and the KCCUK is holding 12 mini director's retrospectives through 2012 in London, so it's a good time to be a Korean film fan (at least if you live in a major metropolis).  Lots of interviews, including three for Lee Myeung-se, trailers, posters, and box office news this week.  

Don't miss MKC's own feature on How Korean Cinema Fared on 2011's Year-end Lists.


“Should I put the word ‘arrowhead’ in a movie title?” joked a film producer during a recent meeting with the Hankyoreh.  The producer’s company certainly hit their target at the box office.  The follow-up to last year’s hit War of the Arrows, which drew 7.4 million viewers, Unbowed (the Korean title of which translates as Broken Arrow), passed the one million viewer mark just over a week after its debut early this year.  (The Hankyoreh, January 27, 2012)

Kwon Sang-woo Finishes Work on New Action Film with Jackie Chan
Hallyu star Kwon Sang-woo has finished work on the movie 12 Chinese Zodiac Heads with Jackie Chan.  The announcement was made yesterday by the actor’s agency, which also reported that Kwon had returned to Korea just before Lunar New Year.  “Currently, Kwon is taking a well-deserved break and is looking over some movie proposals from China, the United States and other countries,” said a representative from the agency.  (Joong Ang Daily, January 28, 2012)

NYC Happenings: NY Korean Film Festival 2012
Whether it's a full-on retrospective at Japan Society, a centennial celebration of studio giant Nikkatsu, or the annual wackiness of NYAFF, New York is a city never short on cinematic offerings from across East Asia, and that has always included a healthy helping of Korean cinema.  From February 24th - 26th, BAMcinĂ©matek and the Korean Society, along with Korean movie giant CJ Entertainment, will be presenting 7 contemporary features, big and small in the 10th edition of the New York Korean Film Festival.  (Twitch, January 30, 2012)

Unbowed, a low-budget South Korean film based on the true story of the so-called “crossbow terror” incident of a college professor, is heating up the local box office, drawing renewed public debate over the 2006 incident.  The movie claimed the No. 2 spot by bringing in more than 1 million viewers at local cinemas as of Wednesday, a week after making a robust debut, the Korean Film Council, a government agency in charge of promoting domestic films, said on Thursday.  (The Korea Herald, January 26, 2012)

Controversial Film on Gangjeong Village Finally Hits Theatres
An independent documentary film titled Jam Docu Gangjeong is finally showing in independent movie theaters 40 days after having been banned by the Korean Film Commission. Pressure from the film industry resulted in the film’s eventual release.  The film was reportedly delayed due to its controversial subject matter and the independent film industry is now calling for a policy reform to prevent the Korean Film Commission from banning films it finds politically objectionable.  (The Hankyoreh, January 26, 2012)

Korean movie and K-Pop stars united together for a new effort against piracy being led by Gaon Chartcalled the '2012 Good Downloader Campaign'.  Actors Ahn Sung Gi, Park Joong Hoon, Lee Min Jung, Jang Hyuk, and music stars Yoon Do Hyun (YB), Kim Yuna (Jaurim), Yunho (TVXQ), Nickhun (2PM), Sohee (Wonder Girls), as well as Sulli (f(x)) banded together for the campaign during a shoot yesterday, sending the message that pirating movies and music is illegal and wrong.  (allkpop, January 30, 2012)

Film of the Year Awards (Korea Film Reporters Association)

The Korea Film Reporters Association feted Korean cinema in its 3rd Film of the Year Awards last night.  Silenced picked up best film, with the director prize going to Kang Hyung-chul for Sunny.  Meanwhile Kim Yun-seok and Tang Wei were best actor and actress for their respective roles in Punch and Late Autumn.   (AsianMediaWiki, January 31, 2012)

Over on the Otherwhere blog, Alua has kindly transcribed the full 2012 programme for the Korean Film Nights at the KCCUK.  12 Korean directors will be featured with 4 films and a Q&A each month.  It's hard not to be incredibly jealous of anyone living in London right now.  (Otherwhere, January 27, 2012)


In one excruciating scene of Kang Je-kyu’s new movie My Way, Soviet soldiers order two war prisoners of different nationalities to fight to the death, but the Korean one refuses to kill his fellow Japanese captive, who he had known as a rival in sports.  Instead, an unlikely alliance begins to form.  The movie is the most expensive ever made in South Korea, a fictionalized account of the real-life story of how a Korean man ended up fighting for the Germans in World War II and being found by American soldiers at the invasion of Normandy.  (The Wall Street Journal, January 26, 2012)

Thanks to her previous films In Between Days and Treeless Mountain, and a none-more-indie cast featuringPaul Dano and Jena Malone, So Yong Kim's latest For Ellen had to be one of the most anticipated films of the Sundance Film Festival. Forming one half of a power couple of indie cinema (with Bradley Rust Gray, director of The Exploding Girl and the upcoming Jack and Diane), it marks her first time working with more established names and proves to be her most accessible project to date.  (indieWire, January 25, 2012)

To the present day, Lee Myung-se is probably best known for his 1999 film Nowhere To Hide which was the first ever Korean film to be released on DVD in the UK.  Born on August 20th, 1957, his first directorial feature film was Gagman in 1989, and in 1991 he won the Best New Director award at the Asia-Pacific Film Festival for My Love My Bride.  Since then, he has gone on to make a number of iconic films, including Duelist (2005) and M (2007) - as visually stunning as they are narratively interesting.  (Hangul Celluloid, January 26, 2012)

For January’s edition the director in question was Lee Myeong-se in conjunction with his 2005 film Duelist.  Presiding over the event was Dr. Daniel Martin who introduced both the film and the director, giving the history and context to Lee Myeong-se’s illustrious career and auteuristic sensibilities.  (Hanguk Yeonghwa, January 27, 2012)

Taekwondo at the Apollo: Lee Myung-se and the Great Safety vs. Cinema Debate
The ‘Year of the 12 Directors’ idea is a wonderful one—what began as a series of film screenings in the Korean Cultural Centre has become, for 2012, a celebratory mini-series of director retrospectives which promises to roll on from now until December.  On Thursday night, we spent three engaging hours in the pleasant company of director Lee Myung-se, whose 1999 action/police procedural Nowhere to Hide officially opened the 12 Directors programme over three weeks ago.  (New Korean Cinema, January 30, 2012)


2 Lines

Russian Coffee



Doomsday Book


(Modern Korean Cinema, January 30, 2012)

South Korean films enjoyed a 22% growth in revenue last year, according to new data from the Korean Film Council (KOFIC).  Nationwide, admissions grew by 8% to 158 million, while box office revenues grew in local currency terms by 7% to ₩1.23 trillion ($1.10 billion).  (Film Business Asia, January 30, 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 (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Korean Cinema News (12/22-12/28, 2011)

Bit of a slow news week over Christmas but a few great features nonetheless and some interesting tidbits on Cloud Atlas and Lee Myung-se's new film, not to mention more trailers, posters, and box office.

To sum up Korean Cinema News for 2011, I will post a feature of what I felt were the top 10 Korean film stories of the year on New Year's Eve.


Bae Doo Na’s Hollywood Debut Piece Wraps Filming
After an 18-week shoot, Bae Doo-na has wrapped filming of the highly anticipated adaptation of David Mitchell's time-jumping opus Cloud Atlas.  The film is directoed by Tom Tykwer and the Wachowski Brothers and Bae stars in one of its six stories, set in a futuristic Seoul.  Tom Hanks, Hugh Grant and Halle Berry also appear as leads.  (eNewsWorld, December 27, 2011)

The English-language Arirang TV network has produced three works as part of its annual film project which were shot in Bucheon, Pohang, and Gwangju.  Each of the writer-directors, Kim In-sik, Lee Sang-woo, and Kim Young-bin, shot their pieces in just two weeks.  (The Korea Herald, December 22, 2011)

Film Therapy Institute Names Punch as Year’s Most Healing
Runaway hit Punch has been named the most healing motion picture of the year at the Korea Institute of Film Application (KIFA) annual Healing Cinema Best 10 event.  A relatively novel technique in the field of psychotherapy, cinema therapy involves therapists who prescribe films to their patients.  Advocates of the technique say that watching films with relatable life themes and subject matter can alleviate patients’ mental distress.  (Joong Ang Daily, December 23, 2011)

The Unlikely Survival Story of Korean Cinema
Korean cinema hasn’t always been as dynamic and acclaimed as it is today. Along the way, Korean filmmakers have had to overcome Japanese colonial oppression, wartime destruction, authoritarian censorship and competition with Hollywood blockbusters.   (10 Magazine, December 2011)

Top & Flop 2011
Ki Mun, the lead editor over at AsianMediaWiki guests posts on Wildgrounds with a look at the best and most disappointing films of 2011.  A lot of independent Korean films made the cut!  (Wildgrounds, December 23, 2011)

Local Films Foray Into Chinese Market
The past year has seen Korean cinema on an upward climb from the recession that hit the industry hard in the mid-2000s, particularly as homespun works made successful debuts in the Chinese box office and more experimental mid-budget films drew crowds domestically.  In the early 2000s, few Korean movies enjoyed wide releases in large neighboring Asian markets such as Japan. In September, however, The Man From Nowhere, a 2010 crime drama, made successful box office debuts not only in Japan but also in China, one of the world’s fastest growing markets.  (The Korea Times, December 26, 2011)

On December 15, new action-comedy Miss Conspirator wrapped shooting.  The film stars Ko Hyun-jung and is directed by Park Chul-kwan who previously brought the successful gangster comedy Hi Dharma (2001) to the screen.  The film, which has been presold by 9ers Entertainment to Thailand's STG is set to be released in the first half of 2012.  Next Entertainment World, better known as N.E.W., is releasing the film in South Korea.  (KOBIZ, December 26, 2011)

Witness the Seoul of the Future in New Cloud Atlas Concept Art
The upcoming big screen adaptation of David Mitchell's sprawling, time hopping novel Cloud Atlas has been much in the news over the last year thanks to its high profile cast, directing team and the unusual manner of its creation.  The picture is being shot simultaneously by two separate film crews – one directed by Tom Tykwer, the other by the Wachowskis - with cast members each playing multiple characters in multiple time periods.  (Twitch, December 27, 2011)

Palm Springs Fest to Screen The Front Line
The upcoming Palm Springs International Film Festival (PSIFF) will screen South Korea’s Oscar submission The Front Line in its Awards Buzz section.  The section will feature 40 of the 63 official submissions the Academy Awards’ Best Foreign Language Film category.  The 40 films were selected by festival programmers as the strongest entries in this year’s race.  The 2012 Palm Springs International Film Festival will run Jan. 5 – 16.  (KOBIZ, December 26, 2011)

Daniel Henney Will Play His First Villain in Lee Myeong-se's Mr. K
Daniel Henney's new challenge will be to make his debut as a terrorist villain in 'master of mise-en-scène' Lee Myeong-se's new film, Mr. K. The action blockbuster will also star Seol Kyeong-gu and Moon So-ri as a couple.  As associate of Henney told TV Report on December 26th, "Henney has been cast in a stylish role for famous director Lee Myeong-se's new film" and "He will appear as a terrorist that clashes with Seol Kyeong-gu over secret information, showing a side of himself we've never seen before".  (, December 26, 2011)

Busan calls For Submissions to Ties That Bind
The Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) / Asian Project Market (APM) has made a call for submissions for the 2012 Ties That Bind – Asia / Europe Producers Workshop.  In its fourth edition, the workshop is held in partnership with EAVE, the Udine Fareast Film Festival, and Friuli Venezia Giulia (FVG) Audiovisual Fund.  (KOBIZ, December 26, 2011)

Cinemart Selects Jang Cheol-soo’s Service for People
The Rotterdam film festival’s co-production market CineMart has selected Korean director Jang Cheol-soo’s project Service for People for its upcoming 29th edition.  CineMart ultimately chose a total of 36 projects from 465 entries.  The finalists will be presented to 850 potential co-financiers, Jan. 29 – Feb 1.  Director Jang Cheol-soo made his feature debut with the much-lauded thriller Bedevilled in 2010 at the Cannes Film Festival’s Critics’ Week.  The film won the Puchon Choice Award at the Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan) as well as the Audience Award and the Best Actress Award at Fantastic Fest in Austin, Texas.  (KOBIZ, December 23, 2011)


Having recently appeared at several international festivals, Through Korean Cinema will appear on DVD in 2012.  Director Leonardo Cinieri Lombroso was kind enough to answer some questions about his work – to explain how and why he decided to explore this subject and what his future plans are for further examining the work of Korean filmmakers…  (New Korean Cinema, December 21, 2011)


Jesus Hospital

Love Fiction

Never Ending Story

Tarbosaurus 3D



Tom Cruise's MI4 Scales Over My Way for Surprise Top Spot
(Modern Korean Cinema, December 26, 2011)

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 (GMT+1) on Modern Korean Cinema. For other weekly features, take a look at the Korean Box Office Update and the Weekly Review Round-upReviews and features on Korean film also appear regularly on the site. 

To keep up with the best in Korean film you can sign up to our RSS Feed, like us on Facebook, or follow us on Twitter.