The Jeonju Digital Project (JDP) operates in a similar fashion to the festival’s Short! Short! Short! (숏!숏!숏!) annual event (the profile of which you can see here). Yet while the latter is focused exclusively on Korean film-making talent, the JDP has a more international scope, selecting three directors to produce a 30 minute digital short film each under an umbrella theme, as well as providing 50 million Korean won to help express their unique visions and styles. The JDP therefore is not only concerned with helping to promote talented directors, but also investing in international co-productions that serve to connect the Korean film industry worldwide.
The theme for the 14th JIFF JDP is ‘strangers’, a wonderfully ambiguous word that can be interpreted in vastly different ways yet also places relationships at the center. This year, the three selected directors are all of Asian origin – Japanese, Chinese, and Indonesian.
Director Kobayashi Masahiro, who was a jury member for JIFF’s International Competition at last year’s festival, was one of the few directors to incorporate the tsunami devastation in his feature length film Women on the Edge, which portrayed three sisters who are reunited following the aftermath crisis. The film was invited to Rotterdam, Tokyo, Osaka, and Jeonju film festivals respectively, yet he also has a long history in the film-making industry in the roles of director, screenwriter, and producer. From China, director Zhang Lu also has a history with JIFF as both a film-maker and member of the jury. His first feature, Tang Poetry, was invited to the 2003 edition of the festival, while he on the panel in 2009 for the ‘Korean Films in Competition’. Director Edwin, hailing from Indonesia, is certainly no stranger to the festival circuit with a filmography that has been invited to Cannes, Berlin, Rotterdam, Tribeca, and a staggering number of other festivals internationally. He also has a prior connection with JIFF, having two of his short films invited to the festival in 2008 and 2011, respectively.
Over There (풍경)
Director: Zhang Lu (장률)
Synopsis: The topic of ‘strangers’ has been interpreted into documentary film Over There, in which director Zhang Lu explores the isolation and loneliness of the human experience despite the multitude of people that surround us. It also looks to explore a contrast in cultures. See below for the trailer.
Someone’s Wife In The Boat Of Someone’s Husband (누군가의 남편의 배에 탄 누군가의 아내)
Director: Edwin (에드윈)
Synopsis: The film follows two people searching for something missing from their lives, and inspired by a romantic legend, journey to the island of Sawai to find it. See the trailer below:
Strangers When We Meet (만날 때는 언제나 타인)
Director: Kobayashi Masahiro (고바야시 마사히로)
Synopsis: Focusing on the social issue of strained relationships amongst the elderly, the film explores the relationship between a couple who haven’t communicated for two years following the death of their son. See the trailer below: