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Korean Movies Draw Attentions at Cannes Film Festival

2009/05/15 Source

Korean films have never been this prolific at the world-renowned French film festival in Cannes before. At this year's 62nd Cannes Film Festival (May 13 to 24) a total of 10 Korean films will be screened.

One of the most attention-grabbing films from Korea is director Park Chan-wook's "Thirst" about a priest-turned-vampire. This film once again, highlights Park's unique storytelling and sensational imagery. The movie premieres on Friday (May 15). It will be competing for the Palme d'Or, the highest honor at Cannes along with 19 other candidates and the winner will be announced on May 24.

Park already won the Grand Prix with his movie "Old Boy" in 2004. "Thirst" was sold to foreign buyers from Brazil, Spain and Turkey upon its second day at the festival. The film was sold to 10 nations including France and Greece prior to its release at home, where it attracted nearly 2 million viewers.

Director Bong Joon-ho will also take part in the festival with his new film "Mother - 2009" at the Un Certain Regard section, about a mother's quest to prove her son's innocence of an accusation of murder. The movie will be screened on Saturday (May 16).

Director Hong Sang-soo also returned to Cannes, invited for the non-competitive Director's Fortnight Section for the fifth time with his latest film, "Like You Know It All". Also being screened in the same section will be the animation "Dust Kid" by director Jung Yu-mi.

At Cinefoundation, a competitive section for young directors there will be two films "The Horn" by director Yim Kyung-dong and "Don't Step Out of the House" by Jo Sung-hee (part of "Nice Shorts"). In Cannes Classics "Prince Yeonsan" (1961) by the late director Shin Sang-ok will be shown in a digitally restored print.

Other Korean films that have arrived in Cannes include "6 Hours" by director Moon Seong-hyeok, which will be shown during the International Critics Week, and "The Land of Scarecrows" by Noh Kyeong-tae, screened as part of the ACID program.

Meanwhile, Cannes has also appointed another Korean director Lee Chang-dong as part of its jury. His 2007 film "Secret Sunshine" was nominated for the Palme d'Or. Lee is at Cannes as one of the producers for the joint French-Korean film "A Brand New Life", directed by Ounie Lecomte. It will have a special screening for this year.

Korean films already scored quite a few achievements at Cannes over the past few years, including the Best Actress Award, won by Korean actress Jeon Do-yeon for the movie "Secret Sunshine" in 2007, and the Best Director Award won by director Im Kwon-taek with this movie "Chihwaseon" in 2002.

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