How Will the 25th Busan International Film Festival amid COVID-19?

Yugyeong Jeong

Every fall, film fans from all over the country as well as abroad visit Busan to meet directors and actors and enjoy good movies. Even people who are not familiar with movies naturally became interested when walking through the streets of Busan, where various events are held throughout the festival. However, unfortunate news was delivered to Korean and foreign actors, movie officials, movie fans, and even volunteers who can feel the festival more vividly than anyone else.

Through an online press conference on the 14th, the Busan International Film Festival decided to postpone the schedule from October 7th to 16th, two weeks later, from 21st to 30th, due to the influence of COVID-19 this year, and significantly reduce the scale. The festival’s opening and closing ceremonies and red carpets are not held. In preparation for the gathering of many audiences, various events such as stage greetings and open talks that allow people to communicate closely with filmmakers will not be available this year. The Asian Contents & Film Market (a market that encompasses the entire film and video content industry), the Asia Project Market (a co-production and investment matching platform that introduces global film projects to film industry officials), and BIFF Forum are conducted online. However, if the social distancing continues, the festival may be canceled.

The picture above is the official poster of the 25th Busan International Film Festival. It embodies the spirit of the era that is building a new axis of time without being overcome by the difficulties of the times. The sculpture standing tall above the vast sea represents the existence of the Busan International Film Festival, which protects the sea of movies, and the light that comes out of the darkness represents the light of a projector that does not extinguish under any difficulties. The blue light enveloping the poster marks the beginning of the morning and symbolizes all of us who wake up tomorrow without losing to the darkness. This year’s poster was created by director Kim Sang-man, who received attention for the design of the poster design of Bong Joon-ho’s “Parasite”. It is even more meaningful as the first poster made by a person who is involved in the Korean film industry.

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