3-D omnibus film to open this year’s Jeonju film festival

By Claire Lee

181 films, including 50 Asian premieres, to be screened in Jeonju

  • Published : Apr 6, 2014 - 20:19
  • Updated : Apr 6, 2014 - 20:19

A 3-D omnibus film collaborated on by three Korean filmmakers will open this year’s Jeonju International Film Festival, its organizers announced last week.

The opening film, titled “Mad Sad Bad,” consists of three short films, each directed by Kim Tae-yong (“Late Autumn,” “Family Ties”), Ryu Seung-wan (“The Berlin File,” “The Unjust”) and Han Ji-seung (“Papa”). While Ryu’s “Ghost” deals with a murder revolving around university students, Kim’s “Picnic” tells the story of a little girl whose younger brother is autistic. Han’s “I Saw You,” on the other hand, features an unusual romance between a zombie and a human.

JIFF celebrates its 15th edition this year with 181 films from 44 countries, including 40 world and 50 Asian premieres. The annual film festival held in Jeonju, North Jeolla Province, is one of the biggest Asian film festivals and a supporter of independent and experimental film projects in Korea. It is also known for introducing unconventional works by up-and-coming filmmakers around the world. 
From left: Park Jeong-min, Sohn Soo-hyeon and Lee David, who star in Ryu Seung-wan, Kim Tae-yong and Han Ji-seung’s omnibus film “Mad Sad Bad,” this year’s opener for the Jeonju International Film Festival, pose for a photo during a press conference in Seoul on Thursday. ( CJ E&M)

The film festival made a number of changes to its structure for the upcoming edition, which will be divided into two sessions. From May 1-7, the festival will screen most of the films in all sections of the lineup, while winners of the three competition sections ― the Korean competition, international competition and Korean short competition ― as well as the competing films in the international competition will be screened again May 8-10.

The winners of the competition sections will be announced during an awards ceremony on May 7, and the Grand Prize winning film of the international competition section will be screened as one of the festival’s closing films on May 10.

Ten films are included in the international lineup, including Japanese filmmaker Masaki Horiguchi’s “Short Hope,” which tells the story of a young boy whose adoptive parents conceive a biological child, and Ethiopian filmmaker Zeresenay Berhane Mehari’s feature “Difret,” a film which deals with an Ethiopian town and its old practice of abducting women for forced marriages. One of the executive producers of “Difret” is Hollywood actress Angelina Jolie.

Also competing in the section is “She’s Lost Control,” an American film about a sexual surrogate who falls for one of her clients, and Brazilian director Fellipe Barbosa’s upcoming-of-age tale “Casa Grande.”

Other films in the lineup are: “History of Fear” by Argentinean director Benjamin Naishtat; “The Well” by Mexican helmer Michael Rowe; “Coast of Death” by Spanish director Lois Patino; “The Virgin Arguments” by Indian director Ram Ramesh Sharma; “The Blue Wave” by Turkish filmmakers Zeynep Dadak and Merve Kayan, and “Hotel Nueva Isla” by Cuban filmmakers Irene Gutierrez and Javier Labrador.

Veteran Korean director and producer Chung Ji-young (“Unbowed,” “National Security”) is heading this year’s international competition jury. Joining Chung are Korean actress Yeh ji-won (“Our Sunhi,” “Ha Ha Ha”), Venice festival programmer Paolo Bertolin and Korean-Japanese helmer Lee Sang-il.

This year’s Jeonju International Film Festival runs from May 1-10 at various venues in the city. For tickets and information, visit www.jiff.or.kr.

By Claire Lee (dyc@heraldcorp.com)