The 26th edition of Busan International Film Festival kicked off last week and will come to a close this Friday. What was noticeable this year was that TV dramas have been invited to the film festival for the first time, an innovative attempt by the young film festival to try something new.
In the newly launched On Screen category this year, three series were invited: two Netflix series in Korean, "Hellbound" and "My Name," as well as HBO Asia's Thai original "Forbidden." The two Netflix series will be unveiled in Korea for the first time through BIFF.
Today we'll talk more in-depth about the Busan International Film Festival and these Netflix invites with culture critic Youngdae Kim in the studio with us and professor Jae SOH at the Seoul Institute of the Arts connecting with us on Zoom. Thank you both for joining us.
So seven Netflix shows in total have made it to the Busan International Film Festivals, three of which are Korean and two of which are premiering. Only a few international film festivals like the Venice and Toronto international film festivals are running similar programs for TV series made for streaming platforms. How do you view this attempt by BIFF to introduce a new category?
(Seven Netflix shows: Netflix's My Name, Hellbound, Space Sweepers, Night in Paradise, The Power of the Dog, The Hand of God, and Passing)
Do you think this new On Screen category created by the film festival could open new opportunities for dramas to be premiered before being released, just like films? What impact will this have on the industry?
(It is the first time that BIFF opened its door to TV series that have multiple episodes, while it has already invited some Netflix-made movies to its non-competition sections, including "The King" by David Michod and "Marriage Story" by Noah Baumbach in 2019. The first three episodes of the six-part fantasy horror "Hellbound" were unveiled for the first time in the Asian region, before its Netflix release next month. The other two had their world premieres before going public on their original platforms.)
Could you tell us a little bit about the three OTT series invited to the new category, especially the two Korean Netflix series?
(Hellbound by director Yeon Sang-ho is coming soon to Netflix and My Name by director Kim Jin-min launches on Netflix on 15 October 2021. HBO Asia's "Forbidden" is co-directed by Anucha Boonyawatana and Josh Kim.)
Why do you think these pieces were invited by BIFF? What is the significance of having these drama series invited to the film festival?
Do you think the introduction of new categories like this could possibly blur the boundary between film and drama? Could it be a step toward creating something in between - a mixture of film and drama? Or could OTT series possibly take over film in the future?
What were some major works to look out for this year at the festival? What were some this and that / issues raised at the festival? What was the general atmosphere of the festival this year? Give us some highlights of the festival.
Alright. That was culture critic Youngdae Kim and professor Jae SOH at the Seoul Institute of the Arts. Thank you for your insights both.