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Jun 07, 2021
  • Writer by Pierce Conran
  • View4205

Hong Sangsoo Returns, Han Jaerim to Debut on the Croisette



For the fourth year on the trot, a pair of Korean features have been selected as part of the main slate of the Cannes Film Festival. This year’s 74th edition of the renowned festival will welcome both Hong Sangsoo’s In Front of Your Face and Han Jaerim’s disaster film Emergency Declaration


In Front of Your Face, which will take part in the brand new ‘Premiere’ section, is the 26th feature film by acclaimed auteur Hong and his second of 2021, following Introduction, which screened in competition at the Berlin International Film Festival earlier this year. The film is his eleventh to be invited to Cannes and his first in four years, after both Claire’s Camera and The Day After debuted there in 2017. Hong earned the Un Certain Regard prize at the festival in 2010 for Hahaha.


Though story details are not yet known, the film stars Lee Hyeyoung (No Blood, No Tears, 2002), while Kim Minhee, who has appeared in seven of Hong’s last eight films, served in a producer capacity for the first time. 


Screening out of competition is Emergency Declaration, which features Song Kangho, Lee Byunghun, Jeon Doyeon, Kim Namgil and Im Siwan. It is the fifth film and the Cannes debut of Director Han, who previously made The Face Reader (2013) and The King (2017). The film follows a commercial airliner, which is forced to issue an emergency declaration mid-flight and attempt to land. 


Last year, both Yeon Sangho’s Peninsula and Im Sangsoo’s Heaven: To the Land of Happiness were part of the Cannes selection, though no actual festival was staged owing to the pandemic. Bong Joonho’s Parasite remains the last film to have earned the festival’s top prize, the Palme d’Or, having done so when it premiered there in 2019. It was the first Korean film to win the prize.

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