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Former Teen Star Promotes 'Adult' Japanese Films

2008/11/06 | 11125 views |  | Permalink | Source

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Ju Hee, 38, has not changed much in 20 years. Many people remember her big, wide eyes and articulate speaking manner. Ju Hee, a teen star in the 1980s, made a comeback as a film festival programmer after finishing her studies in Japan. She is now an executive of a Cinus multiplex and a planner of the 2008 Pink Film Festival, which opened last Saturday.

The Pink Film Festival, which was launched last year, is the only women's film fest showcasing low-budget Japanese adult movies in Korea. The festival runs from Nov.1 to 28 in four Cinus theaters in Isu, Seoul, Busan, Daejeon and Paju (the one in Seoul ends next Tuesday).

"Last year, we held the festival as a limited test-run, and sold 83 percent of seats", said Ju.

After she quit acting in 1991, Ju began a graduate film studies program in Nihon University, Japan the following year. While studying for her master's and doctorate degrees, she won Japanese government scholarships that covered all her tuition fees.

She began to take interest in adult films when preparing for her doctorate dissertation. "My topic for the dissertation was research on the mentality of Japanese people as seen through 'yakuza' gangster movies.

"I was wondering where the Japanese stereotype that Korean people have comes from, and began to look at yakuza movies from the 1960s and 70s. That's when I began studying representations of sexuality depicted in the films. After having discussions with many renowned professors, I decided to shed light upon this topic", said Ju.

It is not only adult movies that she was interested in. Since she became an executive and cinema curator at Cinus, she has been actively showcasing low-budget art and independent movies through special "mini theater" exhibitions. "Please remember me as a film festival programmer, rather than an actress", she said with a smile.

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