Haeundae-gu, Busan, Republic of Korea,
The 7th London East Asia Film Festival Ended Successfully
London Critics' Association Was ‘Surprised by the Diversity of Korean Films’
The London East Asia Film Festival closed its 12-day events on the 30th (local time) with the screening of Warriors of Future, a film starring Actor Louis Koo, a Hong Kong star actor. The London East Asian Film Festival this year provided an opportunity to experience various K-culture beyond K-content, drawing the hottest response from local British audiences since the festival began.
It is also noteworthy that the ‘Asian Film Awards’ section was established in cooperation with the London Critics Association for the first time this year. It is an award ceremony introduced in Europe to expand the scope of criticism of Asian films by appointing critics from the London Critics Association, who are active in the British critic world, as the jury members. The first award went to the films from China, Taiwan, and Korea, respectively.
The Best Film in Competition was awarded to ANIMA, directed by Cao Jinling from China, who focused on the relationship between nature and humans. The Special Jury Mention was for MAMA BOY, directed by Arvin Chen from Taiwan. The Best Documentary in Competition went to VIRGA, directed by Won Hoyeon and Jung Taekyoung from Korea. VIRGA is a work that tells the stories of unregistered migrant children in various Asian countries such as Taiwan, the Philippines, and Thailand.
Korean films and actors also have made a series of achievements at the London East Asia Film Festival. Actor Lee Jungjae, the director/main character of Hunt, the opening film of the festival, won the LEAFF Honorary Award in recognition of his contribution to raising the status of Asian films. Actor Lee Jungeun of the movie Hommage won the LEAFF Best Actor Award, and Actor Im Siwan of Emergency Declaration won the LEAFF Rising Star Award.
The London East Asia Film Festival returned to the scale of its events, which had been reduced due to COVID-19 over the past two years, inviting about 50 films that lead the Asian film trend. In addition, since K-content is growing popular in Europe, it prepared K-culture programs to encourage the audience’s participation by linking Korean food and tourist attractions including Seoul, which enjoy intensified interest nowadays.
Jeon Hyejung, the festival director said, "In the UK, Korean culture passed the point of spread and absorption and has entered the period of consumption. We plan to try various plans next year so that Korean culture, including movies, can settle in Europe."