The Korea Herald


EBS doc festival to deliver spirit of the age

By Hwang Joo-young

Published : Aug. 2, 2023 - 15:37

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Poster for the 20th EBS International Documentary Festival (EIDF) Poster for the 20th EBS International Documentary Festival (EIDF)

The 20th EBS International Documentary Festival will take place from Aug. 21 to 27, introducing 56 documentary films from 35 countries.

The annual documentary festival will begin with an opening ceremony at the EBS headquarters in Goyang, Gyeonggi Province, which will also be aired on EBS 1TV, the EIDF organizing committee said in a press conference Tuesday.

South Korean director Jeong Da-woon’s “Poetry on Land” will open the festival. The documentary revolves around the daily life of Jeong Yung-seon, 82, the country's first female landscape designer.

“EBS aspires to popularize documentary films, as they are a means of communication between individuals and respect diversity, reflecting the spirit of the age," the festival's director Kim Dong-kwan said during the press conference.

The two major programs of the documentary film festival are the Festival Choice competition and the 20th Anniversary Retrospective.

The Festival Choice will award five documentaries. The 13 films in competition were selected for their depiction of topics such as war, amnesia, the environment and women's rights in creative ways.

A total of 1,240 documentaries were submitted rom 70 countries including Spain, France, the Netherlands, Canada, India and Brazil, according to the EIDF organizing committee.

The top award carries a cash prize of 10 million won ($7,700).

Some of the most beloved documentary films of previous festivals will be revisited in the retrospective program. Included are last year’s opener, “Dark Red Forest,” which depicts the retreat of thousands of Tibetan nuns to the Tibetan Plateau, as well as the winner of EIDF 2022, “Nelly & Nadine,” which narrates the story of two women falling in love in the Ravensbruck concentration camp in Germany.

The festival's documentaries will be screened at the Megabox theater in Goyang and the Cinecube theater in central Seoul from Aug. 24 to 27. The documentaries can also be seen on EBS 1TV during the festival period.