Pusan International Film Festival


THR Daily in PUSAN: Download each day's festival edition here:
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Oct. 8, 2008

AFM attendees want longer market
The consensus around Busan's Asian Film Market was that it was a good place for buyers and exhibitors to meet, get to know each other and lay the groundwork for deals. But the cool atmosphere at this year's confab left some calling for change and, of all things, asking for more. Full story

Pusan fest's best offered new look
With an avalanche of films and sections at this year's Pusan International Film Festival, even the most diligent viewer would feel snowed under. To give an overview of the quality of selections is difficult because it's still touching the tip of the iceberg even after watching 30-40 films. Full story

Dialogue: Yoon Jong-chan
"I Am Happy," the closing-night film of this year's Pusan International Film Festival, was director Yoon Jong-chan's first venture into HD. The film, which took six weeks to complete, gave the director a new perspective on the nature of digital filmmaking. Full story

Oct. 7, 2008

'Tokyo Girl' among late market sales
BUSAN, South Korea -- Japan's Tokyo Broadcasting System has sold "Tokyo Girl" to Hong Kong's Edko Films and Korea's Media Story, TBS said Tuesday. Full story

Putting in call for hero
Asian filmmakers are looking for a superhero -- or a few of them -- who can battle into the international marketplace and cut into Hollywood's boxoffice dominance of the genre. Full story

India is Hollywood's newest star
A recent flurry of deals between two diverse film cultures looks like the beginning of a beautiful friendship, heralding not just the arrival of Hollywood studios in Bollywood but also Indian majors heading West. Full story

'Funeral' not the end for Chi
Anna Chi, director of the Pusan International Film Festival entry "Dim Sum Funeral," told The Hollywood Reporter that her next helming project will be "The Mermaid" for Taiwanese producer Hsu Li-kong. Full story

Dialogue: Park Ho-cheung
Pang Ho-cheung is the hardest-working man in the Hong Kong film industry, a published author, film critic and radio talk-show host who has added screenwriting, directing and producing to his resume. Full story

Oct. 6, 2008

Euros busy as AFM closes
For the past few days, Asian Film Market exhibitors have bemoaned the dwindling numbers of exhibitors, with some questioning their future plans for participation. However, there was a positive glow on the market's final day Monday as European distributors locked down a bevy of deals. Full story

Korean helmers have a Plan
Three Korean directors took home half of the prizes awarded Monday night by the Pusan Promotion Plan at a ceremony at the Paradise Hotel. Full story

Korean women take helm
While most women on Korean film sets have traditionally worked on costumes and makeup, signs of change are clear this year in Pusan's Korean Cinema Today selection, where six out of 20 Korean films were shot by female directors. Full story

Dialogue: Paolo Taviani
It's hard to think about Italy's Taviani brothers separately. Neither Vittorio, who is 79, nor Paolo, 76, has ever made a film without the other. Paolo visits Pusan for a retrospective of his brother's work. Full story

Oct. 5, 2008

Korean film industry seeing declines
"A crisis like a great depression," is how Korean Film Council chairman Kang Han-sub described the local industry at a news conference over the weekend. Fewer buyers attending this year's Asian Film Market, coupled with slower market sales than in previous years, seems to prove his point. Full story

AFM stuck in slow lane

Despite a late surge in activity Sunday, exhibitors and buyers are less than pleased with this year's Asian Film Market, which wraps today, blaming global economic and local sales conditions. Full story

BIFCOM ends on high note
This year's Busan International Film Commission and Industry Showcase recovered from a slow start to finish with a bustling weekend of activity that boosted the event's "credibility," organizers said. Full story

Tsui Hark accepts censor burden
Tsui Hark believes that censorship is a process every filmmaker must endure, not only in China but everywhere in the world, the famed director said Sunday during a news conference at the Pusan International Film Festival. Full story

New Zealand, Korea are 'Soul Mates'
Korea and New Zealand's co-production treaty has borne its first fruit, with Scott Reynolds' "Soul Mates" to become the initial film made under the new pact. New Zealand ambassador to Seoul Jane Coombs hosted a celebratory reception Saturday night to introduce director Reynolds ("When Strangers Appear") and his Korean lead, actress Han Chae-young ("Love Now"). Full story

Dialogue: Richard Pena
In 2004, Pena organized the New Tiger series of Korean films, which brought the cinematic spoils of the Korean Wave to the U.S. This year, the 13th Pusan International Film Festival will honor him with the Korean Cinema Award. Full story

Oct. 4, 2008

Incentives urged at seminar
"Put your money where your mouth is" in terms of incentives summed up location expert Bill Bowling's advice Saturday to a gathering of film commission representatives and government officials from across the Asia-Pacific region. Full story

Economy hits Busan showcase
The worldwide economic slowdown has taken its toll on the Busan International Film Commission and Industry Showcase, which this year has seen fewer buyers and attendees. Full story

Fox Star partners with Shah
In what is turning out to be a weekend when Hollywood is connecting with Bollywood like never before, Fox Star Studios India announced Saturday a foray into Indian cinema with Bollywood producer Vipul Amrutlal Shah via a multiple-film deal. Full story

Report: Spielberg, Reliance pact
Steven Spielberg and India’s Reliance Big Entertainment have reached an agreement worth as much as US$1.5 billion to create a new, Hollywood-based film studio, ending Dreamworks’ relationship with Paramount, Indian media outlets reported Saturday. Full story

Bollywood strike ends
A strike by over 100,000 Bollywood technicians and artistes was called off late Friday after an agreement was reached between the Federation of Western India Cine Employees and the Association of Motion Picture and TV Programme Producers. Full story

Shi seeks new generation
Veteran producer Nansun Shi said that new talent, the right attitude towards copyright and a commitment to legally-biding contracts will help bridge Chinese film industry to the world. Full story

Dialogue: Gulnara Sarsenova
The 13th Pusan International Film Festival will present producer Gulnara Sarsenova of Kazakhstan with the Asian Filmmaker of the Year Award, the first woman to receive the award in its six-year history.  Full story

Euro sales agents push into Asia
ANALYSIS: The European accent will be stronger than ever in Pusan this year with sales companies from the continent present in ever-increasing numbers. In total, some 85 titles from Europe will unspool during the festival, making up a third of the total line-up. Full story

Asian animators challegne Hollywood
ANALYSIS: "Storm Rider" earned $4.4 million at the boxoffice in China this summer. Across Asia, an ambitious animation sector is usering in a new era of creativity that should make Hollywood nervous. Read reports from key territories. Full story

Oct. 3, 2008

Pusan fest opens with light and song
Usually a quiet corner of South Korea's bustling port city, the Haeundae Yachting Center came to life once again with throngs of gasping fans, a star-studded red carpet prelude, fireworks, and a little opera. Full story

Horror early buzz at Asian Film Market
"Pandemic,” the $20 million disaster film from Japan's Tokyo Broadcasting System, Inc (TBS), is one of the films that are generating buzz at the first day of the Asian Film Market. Full story

Two stories in film funds
Despite the recent credit crisis, panelists at the Asian Film Funds Forum said that the explosion of regional film funds may overload the production pipeline. Full story