Asian film industry starts to prepare for Busan festival
The emerging links between Hollywood and China have been the main source of film industry headlines in Asia this week, but there’s been some pretty big news coming out of South Korea too, as that country starts to gear up for the region’s most prestigious festival.
The annual Busan lnternational Film Festival will this year be held from October 6 to 14, and it has this week been announced that Hong Kong-based director Yonfan (Prince of Tears, Peony Pavilion) will head the jury for the event’s major prize, the New Currents award for first or second-time Asian directors.
Yonfan will be joined on the jury by Chinese actress Jiang Wenli, actor Joe Odagiri from Japan, South Korean producer Oh Jung-wan and Olivier Pere, who directs the Locarno Film Festival in Switzerland.
This year’s New Currents award has 13 entrants with the films selected under the themes “homecoming,” “alienation,” “family” and “growing.” Filmmakers will be representing a wide collection of countries, from Sri Lanka to Burma and, of course, China, the one film industry sure to be on everyone’s mind when Busan starts.
China has been in the news this week following the announcement of a joint deal to produce films between the Hollywood-based Legendary Entertainment (The Hangover) and Huayi Brothers Media Corp (Aftershock). First up for the new partnership will be a production tracing the origins of China’s Great Wall, with American Edward Zwick slated to direct.