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Korean Film News
Beijing Film Festival Welcomes 5 from Korea
Apr 18, 2019
- Writerby Pierce Conran
Festival Favorites and Commercial Hits Screen in China
Five Korean films have been invited to screen at the 9th edition of the Beijing International Film Festival, which kicked off on April 13 with the opening film The Composer by Xirzat YAHUP, a co-production between China and Kazakhstan. This year’s Korean selection includes CHOI Kook-hee's Default (2018), Hong Sangsoo's Hotel by the River, JUNG Bum-shik’s GONJIAM: Haunted Asylum (2018), LEE Han’s Innocent Witness and ZHANG Lu’s Japanese-Korean co-production FUKUOKA.
The latest work by the prolific auteur Hong, Hotel by the River debuted at the Locarno International Film Festival last year, where it earned leading man KI Joo-bong the Silver Leopard for Best Actor. JUNG’s found footage horror GONJIAM: Haunted Asylum (2018) became one of the most successful Korean horror films of all time when it welcomed over two million viewers early last year. ZHANG’s latest drama Fukuoka debuted at the Berlin International Film Festival earlier this year. The second film by SPLIT (2016) director CHOI, Default (2018) chronicles the IMF bailout crisis of 1997 in Korea. Punch (2011) director LEE’s legal melodrama Innocent Witness with JUNG Woo-sung and KIM Hyang-gi became a hit after opening in Korea last month.
Due to an overall cooling of ties between Korea and China over the placement of THAAD missile launchers on the Korean peninsula, the Beijing International Film Festival screened no Korean films in 2017 but Korean works were welcomed once again starting last year.
This year’s festival will continue until April 20 when it will close with the Indian Shah Rukh KHAN-vehicle Zero.