SEOUL— The Asian Film Academy (AFA) this year will have a strong European presence under the leadership of Bela Tarr. The Hungarian filmmaker will oversee the workshop for aspiring Asian cineastes, which is held every fall in conjunction with South Korea’s Busan International Film Festival (BIFF).
The director best known for artsy, black and white experimentation onscreen, such as in Damnation (1987) and The Turin Horse (2011), will serve as dean of the program that will run Sept. 25-Oct. 12. The 58-year-old is no stranger to educational initiatives, as he recently launched an academic film course at the University of Split in Croatia. The upcoming tenure will mark Tarr’s second visit to Busan, where he previously served as jury head of BIFF’s New Currents competition section in 2012.
Korean director Song Il-gon, whose romance Always opened the 2011 BIFF, has been appointed as directing mentor for the program, which teaches both practical and theoretical aspects of filmmaking through short film production, workshops, masterclasses and special lectures.
Polish cinematographer Ryszard Lenczewski (Ida, 2013) will be in charge of teaching camerawork. Oh Seok-geun, director of the Busan Film Commission, will resume his position as deputy dean, which he has held since 2011.
“In its 10th year, AFA formed a faculty filled with world-renowned filmmakers with European influence, including Tarr, building high expectations,” said organizers. Poland’s Krzyszof Zanussi has been the only European cineaste to serve as dean in past editions, which has invited top Asian cineastes for the position including Kurosawa Kiyoshi,Hou Hsiao Hsien,Im Kwon-taek,Mohsen Makhmalbaf,Abbas Kiarostami,Jia Zhangke andLee Chang-dong.
There will also be various events organized through AFA’s recently forged partnership with the New York Film Academy and Full Sail University
Meanwhile, BIFF will run Oct. 2-11, along with the Asian Film Market from Oct. 5-8 and Asian Project Market from Oct. 6-8.