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Director Kim Ki-duk named president of jury for Moscow Film Festival

Acclaimed South Korean movie director Kim Ki-duk has been named the president of the jury for the 41st Moscow International Film Festival, the homepage of the event showed Thursday, an appointment likely to stir up controversy over his ethical qualifications.

Kim has shunned public appearances in his home country since he was accused last year of sexually assaulting actresses while filming. 

Kim Ki-duk (Yonhap)
Kim Ki-duk (Yonhap)

He recently filed damage suits against an actress who raised a sexual violence accusation and against local broadcaster MBC for an investigative TV program featuring sexual assault allegations surrounding him, but public opinion here remains hostile to the director.

"Kim Ki-duk has been hailed by both critics and audiences for his hard-to-express characters, shocking visuals and unprecedented messages (since his debut with 'Crocodile' in 1996)," the website of the festival said in an introduction.

"In 2000, his 5th feature 'Real Fiction' was shown in competition program of the Moscow International Film Festival. He continued on making internationally acclaimed films," said the organizer of the festival set to kick off on April 18.

But the appointment has the potential to draw protests and complaints as Kim is still facing sexual violence accusations.

After his late movie "Human, Space, Time and Human" was chosen to open the Yubari film festival on March 7 in the namesake Japanese city in Hokkaido, women's rights groups spoke up to demand the film's removal. (Yonhap)