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Ko - production in Busan
  • ASHFALL to Open 22th Far East Film Festival
  • by Pierce Conran /  Jun 15, 2020
  • 11 Korean Films Invited to Online Edition of Udine

    The Korean disaster action blockbuster ASHFALL (2019) will serve as the opening film of this year’s online-only edition of the Far East Film Festival (FEFF) in Udine, Italy, leading a program of 46 titles from around Asia. FEFF was originally scheduled to take place in late April and early May this year but owing to the COVID-19 Pandemic the festival was forced to postpone until June 26, and eventually declared that its 22nd edition would be held exclusively online for the very first time.

    From directors KIM Byeong-seo (Cold Eyes, 2013) and LEE Hae-jun (Castaway on the Moon, 2009), ASHFALL (2019) stars HA Jung-woo as a South Korean special forces operative who is forced to team up with a North Korean agent played by LEE Byung-hun when the threat of a devastating volcanic eruption looms over the Korean peninsula. 

    As ever, FEFF will present a wide range of Korean titles, with 11 features invited this year, which range from indie comedies to big-budget, star-driven thrillers. HA Jung-woo also headlines the horror film The Closet, which will be having its international premiere in Italy, while LEE Byung-hun is the lead of WOO Min-ho’s period political drama The Man Standing Next, which will have its international festival premiere at FEFF. The Man Standing Next, which deals with events leading up to the assassination of President PARK Chung-hee, will be accompanied by an info screening of a restored version of IM Sang-soo’s classic The President’s Last Bang (2005), which deals with the same historical episode.

    Having its world festival premiere will be the romantic comedy Crazy Romance (2019) with KONG Hyo-jin and KIM Rae-won, while the social sensation KIM JI-YOUNG, BORN 1982 (2019) from KIM Do-young and KIM Cho-hee’s indie debut Lucky Chan-sil will both have their European premieres at FEFF.

    Screening in Italy for the first time will be the crime thriller BEASTS CLAWING AT STRAWS with JEON Do-yeon and JUNG Woo-sung, the action-comedy disaster film EXIT (2019), YOON Ga-eun’s sophomore film The House of Us (2019) and the melodrama Vertigo (2019) with CHUN Woo-hee.

    Audience, who will be viewing films through the online portal, will once again have a chance to vote on the Mulberry Awards, in addition to enjoying various video greetings and in-depth talks that will take place throughout the festival.

    Also moving online will be the FEFF Campus journalism school and the Focus Asia industry section and project market.
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