March 01, 2006


The battle over Korea's screen quota system took a new turn as a group of 150 directors and the Korean Movie Picture Producers Associations which includes Korea's major studios and production companies, began a boycott of Korea's conservative paper, Chosun Ilbo. The paper had made negative comments about director Park Chan-Wook after he staged a one-man protest against the reduction of the screen quota system in Berlin, and it is largely viewed as a mouthpiece for the Korean government's anti-screen quota position.

The group of directors, known as Director's Cut, and the Korean Movie Picture Producers Association have said that they will not give any interviews or grant access to Chosun Ilbo or its reporters until they decide otherwise.

March 1, 2006 at 01:01 AM in News | Permalink


the whole article was comedy at its best.

It's clear the guy who wrote it knows very little about the country's film industry, or film at all. Just another BS fest from the Chosun Ilbo. No surprise...

Posted by: x | Mar 1, 2006 2:47:17 AM

Did you read the original Chosun Ilbo article that sparked this controversy? I'd love to hear what it said.

Posted by: Grady Hendrix | Mar 1, 2006 5:45:47 AM

yeah same here.

Posted by: eliza bennet | Mar 1, 2006 5:48:03 AM

You can find the original here: http://www.chosun.com/national/news/200602/200602150240.html

Essentially it's another propaganda piece, probably influenced or even pushed by Kwon Tae-Shin (Vice-Min of Economy)'s posse. The kind of article the Chosun Ilbo is famous for.

It opens criticizing Park Chan-Wook for taking part in those 'one man' demo's against the screen quota reduction from the Berlin Film Festival, with a sign reading 'No Screen Quota No Old Boy', and continues saying Park Chan-Wook isn't that good a director in his book.

Then he begins with the hilarity, saying he kept wondering how a film like Oldboy could get awards like that at Cannes, and then manages to quote Manola Dargis and Owen Gleiberman of Entertainment Weekly, clearly showing every American hated the film, just like him. Then he supposes it must have been Tarantino, since all he cares about are violent films. That guy and his violent flicks... they're corrupting our youth!

The film didn't even do that well at home (yeah, 3.5 Million tickets, that's like... nothing), and barely released in a few cities in America to quickly disappear (because getting 30 nationwide screens is sure going to hurt Hollywood blockbusters), so what is he talking about? But no, it's not because of the release scale, it's just the film is not good enough!

He says JSA might be better than Oldboy, but it's still too long, he doesn't know what it's trying to tell (is that SO FRIGGING HARD?), so he kept having problems focusing. He'd rather see some more happenings in Panmunjeom (with some tension!), but the film digresses so he says it was no fun.

He says as a Korean he found it so hard to resist leaving the theater, so he supposes a foreigner having to read subtitles would leave in 10 Minutes. When he saw the film sold some 5 Million tickets (it was over 6, but that's ok), he kept asking what people were seeing in this kind of film... what was so special about that?

So he says, Park Chan-Wook is overrated. But he thinks Mr. Park doesn't think so. He thinks the guy feels he's so great he can go out in Germany and bore people with his issues (people who... like... were there to watch films, and probably know Oldboy, right?).

Then he goes on to make some idiotic little examples of his ideal cinematic world, and concludes with a brilliant: "Instead of 'No Screen Quota No Oldboy', I'd just get rid of Oldboy alltogether. For the sake of Korean films."

"Please let's stop making bloody, sadistic and violent films, give us films that can make us feel something. Puhhhleeease!"

So in short:
1) Park Chan-Wook ain't that good, so he doesn't deserve to protest, let alone do it in a foreign country.
2) Korean films will go to hell because they are sadistic and violent.

Sorry for the quick recap, could do it a little better given time (and probably if I was a little more 'distanced' from this whole issue, including not having read the Chosun Ilbo the last 5-6 years and being familiar with their bullshit acts, I'd sound less 'sarcastic'), but that's about it. It's pretty obvious why film people in Korea would be angry.

Posted by: x | Mar 1, 2006 9:05:49 AM

Thank you so much for the information. It was really helpful and can not agree more with the film people who are upset about this.

Posted by: eliza bennet | Mar 2, 2006 3:15:56 AM

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