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N. Korean Novel to Be Made Into S. Korean Film

2005/05/10 | 144 views | Permalink | Source

By Kim Ki-tae
Staff Reporter

A South Korean filmmaker will screen a North Korean novel on the life of the 16th century hostess Hwang Chin-i.

Siz Entertainment yesterday said that it had recently signed a copyright agreement with unidentified North Korean authorities. The novel "Hwang Chin-i" was written by North Korean novelist Hong Sok-jung in 2002 and also published in South Korea last year.

"We reached the agreement during a recent visit to Kaesong in the North", Siz's president Jo Seong-won said. However, he declined to comment on the details. The filmmaker is to hold a relevant press conference at 2 p.m. today.

Meanwhile, Yonhap News Agency yesterday reported the filmmaker will likely shoot most of the scenes in the North from spring next year. If the reported plan is realized, it will be the first South Korean film shot on North Korean soil. A local flick, "Bold Family", had several scenes filmed in the North, but only in the tourist area around Mt. Kumgang.

However, the Foundation of Inter-Korean Cooperation, which has brokered the copyright deal, denied the report. "Most of the reports are misleading or wrong", its official said on condition of anonymity.

The author, Hong, is the grandson of Hong Myong-hi, one of the greatest modern-time novelists and the author of "Im Kkok-chong". Hong Sok-jung drew attention early this year for criticizing Sakyejul, a South Korean publisher of "Im Kkok-chong" for violating his copyright.

Hong Sok-jung's novel "Hwang Chin-i" depicts the life of the legendary kisaeng, female courtesan and entertainers.

Siz Entertainment has produced "Springtime" in 2004 and "My Beautiful Girl, Mari" in 2001.

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