∙ At 8 PM on May 28, a new JEONJU IFF in the age of COVID-19 live streamed its opening ceremony from the Korea Traditional Culture Center!
∙ A hybrid opening ceremony took place online and offline with trailers, an opening performance video, and supportive messages through #thanks_challenge.
At 8 PM on Thursday, May 28, the 21st JEONJU International Film Festival (JEONJU IFF, Festival Director LEE Joondong) opened the festival at the Korea Traditional Cultural Center, while live streaming the event on the festival’s official YouTube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/jiffmedia) to announce the beginning of its 116-days-long journey, in line with the changes we face at the age of COVID-19.
The 21st JEONJU IFF, which will hold jury screenings, online screenings, and extended screenings as a measure to prevent the spread of COVID-19, held a small but fruitful opening ceremony with actors KIM Gyuri and LEE Seungjun as hosts. About 90 attendees including Chairman KIM Seung-su of the organizing committee, Festival Director LEE Joondong, a few film festival guests, jury members, and directors with films in competition joined the event to support JEONJU IFF’s courageous move.
The opening ceremony started with a promotional clip of Factory of Contemporary Arts in Palbok and the red cube, a symbol that represents the festival. It was followed by the official festival trailer by director JEONG Dahee of Movements (2019), then a performance video of “I Wanna Work” from a local indie band made up of teachers, MuzGrain. Lastly, directors whose films were invited to the 21st JEONJU IFF participated in the #thanks_challenge and sent supportive messages to the festival which were compiled into a video. These videos were screened with English subtitles to allow local and international audiences to enjoy together.
Chairman KIM Seung-su of the organizing committee said, “JEONJU IFF faced countless hardships in the last 20 years, but we always overcame them with courage and solidarity. Even though the crisis we face with COVID-19 might be of a different nature, we’ll still overcome it with passionate courage and warm solidarity.”
While explaining how this year´s film festival will be held differently, Festival Director LEE Joondong said, “COVID-19 shook the world, and the film industry was no exception. But we’ll find new ways to hold film festivals and provide even stronger supportive programs for creative projects to boost the production of alternative films.” He added, “I hope many will support us and give us encouragement as we take a courageous leap with this new challenge.”
From May 28 to June 6, the JEONJU IFF will hold its jury screenings for the jury members, the directors, and those affiliated with the film, while online screenings (wavve.com) for the audience will also take place concurrently. With the support of YouTube, program events like Cinema Class where experts from specific fields are invited to hold discussions about films, JEONJU Special which provides an opportunity for the director and cast to discuss opinions about their film, and JEONJU Talk! Talk! where various directors and actors get together to talk about their films, will be live streamed from May 29. The online live broadcast schedule for these program events will be released on the JEONJU IFF website (eng.jeonjufest.kr) and the official social media accounts such as Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
Meanwhile, JEONJU IFF decided to postpone its extended screenings which was planned to be held from June 9, due to concerns over the respread of COVID-19. Festival Director LEE said, “JEONJU IFF puts safety first. We will announce extended screening details later when the situation remains stable.”
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