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Korean Film News

Time Likely to Be KIM Ki-duk`s Last Domestic Release

Aug 17, 2006
  • Writerby Yi Ch'ang-ho (KOFIC)
  • View2467
Director KIM Ki-duk announced that if his latest film Time will fail commercially in Korea like his previous films he won't sell his future films for a domestic release anymore. KIM Ki-duk is an international renowned director with awards from the most prestigious international film festivals to show for it. However, his films are ignored by the Korean audience and KIM feels that he is unjustly criticized by the Korean press and critics. KIM's latest two films 3-iron and The Bow gained critical acclaim internationally and were relatively commercially successful when released in cinemas overseas. In the U.S., France and Italy; both films drew over 200,000 viewers. At home, his films got nowhere close to a similar number. KIM ventilated his frustrations with the domestic market and critics after the press screening of Time. It has come to the point that if Time fails; he'll also refrain from submitting his films to Korean international film festivals. In relation to his concern for smaller films like his own, KIM also commented on the record breaking runaway success of another local film, The Host. KIM is critical of how one commercial film can dominate the screens in Korea. The Host director BONG Joon-ho said that he was perplexed by the unprecedented success of The Host, but that it was reached fairly. Also, BONG shares KIM's concern for smaller films and argued for a 'minority quota' to protect smaller films and secure diversity in Korean cinema. BONG spoke out of experience; before his commercial success, his small debut film Barking Dogs Never Bite gained critical acclaim, but couldn't compete with commercial films. Time deals with the obsession with physical beauty and the use of plastic surgery to achieve it. KIM didn't intend to release Time in domestic cinemas, but in the end it was picked up by art film distributor Sponge for a Korean release. Yi Ch'ang-ho (KOFIC)
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