Monday, August 15, 2011

Korean Cinema News (08/08-08/14, 2011)

Modern Korean Cinema is a proud media partner of the Korean Film Festival in Australia which will get underway on August 24th in Sydney until the 29th and then move on to Melbourne where it will take unspool from the 10th to the 13th. Many excellent films will be screened including: The Man From Nowhere; Bedevilled; The Unjust; The Journals of Musan; The Show Must Go On (2007); Oki's Movie; and Secret Reunion. Some special guests will also be making an appearance including director Ryoo Seung-wan and producer Kang Hye-jung. If you in the area or can make it there be sure not to miss what is shaping up to be an exceptional celebration of Korean cinema!

The Korean Film Festival of Australia will feature films by many luminaries of the Korean film industry. Below are profiles they have put together for some of the festival favorites:

Martin Cleary of New Korean Cinema, another media partner of KOFFIA, gives us an overview of the festival and its films in a series of features.


A Primer on Korean Cinema

Paul Quinn of Hangul Celluloid gives us an overview of the appeal of Korean cinema for Pelter Magazine. (Pelter Mag, August 8, 2011)

Outcry as KBS Airs First Lesbian Drama
Due to the fact that it contained content relating to same-sex couples, a new KBS drama called Daughters of Club Bilitis had viewers up in arms. (, August 8, 2011)

Miss Conspirator Halts Filming
Due to the poor health of director Jung Bum-Sik, as of August 12, 2011 filming for Miss Conspirator was halted. (Asian Media Wiki, August 12, 2011)

Gone With the Wind Casts Cha Tae-hyun
Gone With The Wind, a historical comedy centered around thieves who attempt to steal ice from an ice house, has cast Cha Tae-hyun and will begin filming in September. (Asian Media Wiki, August 12, 2011)

Korean Shortlist For Academy Awards Announced
Poongsan, Sunny, The Yellow Sea, The Front Line, Hanji and The Day He Arrives have been shortlisted for Korea's submission into next year's academy awards. (Hancinema, August 11, 2011)

Korea's Invasion of Alien Bikini
A profile of director Young-Doo Oh’s Invasion of Alien Bikini which will be premiering later this months. Blending the comic science fiction of Save the Green Planet (2003) with the bondage creepiness of a film like Audition (2001), Oh’s film has the potential to be another in the storied line of Korean films where weirdness defies classification. (Asian Movie Pulse, August 11, 2011)

CJ E&M Harbors Global Ambitions
CJ executives are seeking to double CJ E&M's size by 2015, with overseas markets potentially contributing 30-40% of revenue, compared with about 10% today. (Asian Media Journal, August 11, 2011)

The Man From Nowhere to Be Released by Toei in Japan
As the Japanese major Toei announced that it was returning to foreign acquisitions, it stated that The Man From Nowhere would be its first release. (Screen Daily, August 11, 2011)

Quick to Open in US & Canada
Motorcycle summer blockbuster Quick which has been doing well in general release in Korea will open in select theaters in the US and Canada later this month. (, August 10, 20110)

Arirang and Night Fishing Screening at HKSIFF
The Hong Kong Summer International Film Festival will screen Kim Ki-duk's Arirang and Park Chan-wook's iPhone short Night Fishing. The festival runs for two weeks and got underway August 9. (, August 8, 2011)

Lee Jang-ho to Head New Film Organization
Veteran filmmaker and head of the Seoul Film Commission Lee Jang-ho was elected as the first head of Film Korea, a new organisation which aims to promote Korea as a location for foreign productions as well as converge the separate sectors of film, TV drama, manhwa (manga), animation and gaming. (Screen Daily, August 12, 2011)

Ryoo Seung-beom Thanks Fans for Fantasia Award
A video response from Ryoo Seung-beom after learning that he won the best actor award at Fantasia for his role in his brother's film The Unjust. (, August 8, 2011)

Asia Cinema Fund Backs Wide Array of Films
The Busan International Film Festival's Asia Cinema Fund has announced the diverse slate of films it has supported, which includes the Venice Film Festival-bound Cut. (Film Business Asia, August 9, 2011)

Korean Wave Hits Toronto
Cindy Zimmer offers her thoughts on the emergence of Korean culture in Toronto, having moved back there after living in Korea. (Life's An Adventure 2, August 9, 2011)

EDIF to Screen Wide Range of Documentaries
The EBS (Educational Broadcasting System) International Documentary Festival (EDIF), which celebrates non-fiction film, will get underway on August 19, screening 51 films from 29 nations on TV and in theatres. (The Korea Herald, August 10, 2011)


Radio Interview with KOFFIA's Kieran Tully

Kieran Tully, marketing director of KOFFIA, discusses the upcoming festival on SBS radio Australia. (, August 9, 2011)

Sit-down with Action Star Ha Ji-won
The star of summer blockbuster Sector 7 talks about 3D, her image as an action star and her love for melodramas and romance. (, August 8, 2011)



Arrow Impresses While Sector 7 Flounders

Arrow, The Ultimate Weapon got off to a strong start with 967,000 admissions while Sector 7 saw most of audience disappear in its second weekend after it wound up with 246,000, down nearly 80% from last week. Quick and The Front Line also tapered off relatively quickly and scored 190,000 and 126,000 spectators, at this rate 3 million is the final threshold that both of these releases can hope for. Leafie, A Hen Into the Wild remained strong with 233,000 while Ghastly almost disappeared in its second week with 5,000 (a 90% drop) and may not even reach 100,000. After the huge success of Sunny, which opened in early May, there has not been another breakout hit, three recent blockbusters have been unable to break out big numbers but perhaps Arrow, which has garnered good reviews, will hold out for some big figures. (, August 14, 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. 

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