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'Wonderland' lets you video call your lost loved ones

May 10, 2024
  • Source by Yonhap
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Many recent films and TV series have portrayed a future enhanced by highly advanced artificial intelligence technologies. 

 

This hot topic returns to the Korean cinema with "Wonderland," a Korean sci-fi fantasy drama slated for release next month.

 

The film tells the story of people who use an innovative AI service called "Wonderland," which allows them to communicate with their deceased loved ones through video calls.

 

Written and directed by Kim Tae-yong, best known for "Late Autumn" (2011), the new flick boasts a star-studded cast, featuring Bae Suzy, Park Bo-gum, Jung Yu-mi, Choi Woo-shik and Tang Wei.

 



A scene from the Korean sci-fi film "Wonderland," provided by Acemaker Movieworks  


"I make video calls often. But after hanging up, I would wonder if that was really a real person I was talking to," Kim said during a press conference in Seoul on Thursday to promote "Wonderland."


"When I meet them again, it feels like a long time has passed, yet also like I just saw them yesterday. It feels like the boundaries of relationships are becoming increasingly blurred," he continued. "This led me to consider the possibility that, unlike the past, there could be a time when even deceased people can communicate and not be truly gone," he said, explaining his motivation for making the film.


He set the movie in the near future using technologies available today, hoping to make the story resonate with the audience.


To further enhance realism, he consulted with a prominent AI expert at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), a national research university in Daejeon.


Director Kim Tae-yong of the Korean sci-fi film "Wonderland" speaks during a press conference to promote the movie in Seoul on May 9, 2024.

 

In "Wonderland," Bae Suzy takes on the role of a young flight attendant who uses the service to communicate with her boyfriend (played by Park Bo-gum) after he falls into a coma from an accident.


Tang Wei plays a mother who subscribes to the service before her death to allow herself to communicate with her young daughter.


Jung Yu-mi and Choi Woo-shik portray a team of coordinators of the service.


The director admitted the actors were so captivating that he found himself constantly moving the camera closer while filming them. "So I had to make a conscious effort to step back," he said, with a smile.


Park Bo-gum said he was drawn to the film's unique concept.


"When I first read the screenplay," he said, "I found the subject matter incredibly interesting. But most of all, I wanted to work with the director."


The actor said it was a "pleasure" to constantly exchange ideas with the director about the characters and their stories throughout filming.


Bae Suzy agreed, saying: "The most fascinating aspect of working with the director was his ability to help me express complex emotions. It was also fun to exchange thoughts with him throughout the filming process."


The cast of the Korean sci-fi film "Wonderland" poses for photographers during a press conference to promote the movie in Seoul on May 9, 2024. (Yonhap)

The cast of the Korean sci-fi film "Wonderland" poses for photographers during a press conference to promote the movie in Seoul on May 9, 2024. 


The cast of the Korean sci-fi film "Wonderland" poses for photographers during a press conference to promote the movie in Seoul on May 9, 2024. (Yonhap)


The upcoming film marks Kim's first feature film in 13 years after "Late Autumn" and his second collaboration with Tang Wei, who is now his wife, after the 2011 romance movie.


When asked about working again with the Chinese actress, Kim described it as "an amazing experience."


"I'd see her on set all day, and then I'd go home, and there she was again," he said.


Choi Woo-shik then chimed in, asking, "So, was it good?"


Kim chuckled and replied: "Absolutely. We could talk about things at home that we couldn't on set. It felt like I was working 24 hours a day."


Tang added, "This is our second project together, and the biggest difference is that I became more comfortable than before.


"The director is a workaholic, and I'm also a detail-oriented and meticulous person. I'm lucky to be able to work with him. I think it would have been quite difficult with someone else," she said, drawing laughter from reporters.


The film will open in local theaters nationwide June 5.


Written by Shim Sun-ah

Republication, copying or redistribution by any means is prohibited without the prior permission of KOFIC and the original news source.
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