The Korea Herald


This year's Busan film fest to proceed without festival director

Two co-deputy directors to lead 29th BIFF

By Kim Da-sol

Published : March 31, 2024 - 14:29

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(Busan International Film Festival) (Busan International Film Festival)

Asia’s largest film festival, the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF), will proceed with the post of festival director yet to be filled.

In a statement released Friday night, the BIFF said that there were “no qualified candidates” despite its continued search for someone to lead the festival. In February, the festival organizers began another search for the post of festival director, accepting applications through March 19. The post has been vacant since May last year.

“Many talented candidates with expertise and experience in the movie industry, academia and local community applied to the first and second rounds of recruitment. But it was difficult for us to find one who met the values we were seeking,” said the BIFF.

Following discussions, the authorities decided to postpone filling the festival director position and proceed with this year’s edition with two co-deputy directors: Park Do-shin and Kang Seung-ah.

The organizers added that BIFF Chairperson Park Kwang-su and newly appointed Director of Asian Contents & Film Market (ACFM) Kim Young-deok will support the co-deputy directors to minimize the impact of the festival director post remaining vacant.

The process of appointing a new festival director will resume after this year’s festival.

Co-deputy Director Park Do-shin (BIFF) Co-deputy Director Park Do-shin (BIFF)

Park, with 24 years of experience at the BIFF, was newly appointed a co-deputy director to helm the overall management of the festival and select films that will be invited to the festival. He has served in various positions at the BIFF, including as program manager, PR manager, senior programmer and head of the Jiseok Film Institute.

Kang, a former journalist at Busan Ilbo who was appointed to the co-deputy director post in 2019, will continue to be charge of overall budgeting and administration.

Kim, the new director of ACFM, a comprehensive platform for trading content ranging from film and video to intellectual property such as books, is a former senior programmer at the BIFF.

In February, veteran film director Park Kwang-su was appointed BIFF chairperson for a four-year term. His appointment came nine months after the abrupt resignation of Lee Yong-kwan in May 2023 after coming under fire for a string of leadership changes that exposed internal differences over how the festival should be run.

The 29th BIFF will take place in Busan Oct. 2-11. The 19th ACFM will take place Oct. 5-8.