Overview

Official Title
25th JEONJU International Film Festival
Slogan
Beyond the Frame
Festival Dates
Wednesday, May 1, 2024 - Friday, May 10, 2024 • Opening Ceremony: Wednesday, May 1
• Awards Ceremony: Tuesday, May 7
• Closing Ceremony: Friday, May 10
• 16th JEONJU Project: Sunday, May 5 - Tuesday, May 7
Screenings
Screenings 232 films from 43 nations 102 Korean films(52 feature-lengths, 50 shorts)
130 international films(110 feature-lengths, 20 shorts)
• World Premiere : 82 films
• International Premiere : 5 films
• Asian Premiere : 47 films
• Korean Premiere : 60 films
Festival Venues
22 screens from 5 Cinemas
Opening CeremonySori Arts Center of Jeollabuk-do, Moak Hall
Awards Ceremony · Closing CeremonyJeonbuk National University Cultural Center
TheatersJEONJU Digital Independent Cinema, CGV Jeonjugosa, MEGABOX Jeonju Gaeksa, Jeonbuk National University Cultural Center, PIXAR DOME
16th JEONJU ProjectJeonju Jungbu Vision Center, Jeonju Yeonghwa Hotel, MEGABOX Jeonju Gaeksa
100 Films 100 Posters Exhibition
10th 100 Films 100 PostersFactory of Contemporary Arts in Palbok
100 Films 100 Posters X 10 ArchiveSubculture Center JAKDANG, Wanpanbon Culture Center (in Hanok Village), Inhu Library, etc.
Additional event locationIn and around Jeonju Film Street
Presented / Hosted By
JEONJU International Film Festival Organizing Committee / JEONJU International Film Festival Executive Committee
Sponsored By
Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Jeonbuk State, Jeonju City, Korean Film Council
Features and Changes
Operation
• Expanded Space, Reliable Operation

Like last year, we are experiencing a transition during an ongoing construction project to create space dedicated to the film festival. Accordingly, events, including the opening and closing ceremonies, will take place in the expanded hubs. We reserved diverse places for new events this year. Like last year, the opening ceremony will occur at the Sori Arts Center of Jeollabuk-do, and the closing ceremony will take place at the Jeonbuk National University Cultural Center. Last year, the Factory of Contemporary Arts in Palbok hosted exhibitions; this year, diverse venues such as Subculture Center JAKDANG will join in hosting exhibitions.

Korean Film Council evaluates film festivals, one criterion being occupancy rate, and JEONJU IFF has consistently received positive reviews. Conversely, the high occupancy rate of 80% as of last year also suggests that tickets are high to get and the cinemas might have been too crowded for the audience to feel comfortable. Similarly to the previous edition, most screenings will happen in cinemas on the JEONJU Film Street. Jeonbuk National University Cultural Center will screen movies for medium-to-large audiences. We will ensure more screenings so that the audience comfortably enjoys films.

• The Size and Budget Management

Since late last year, a series of media reports have focused on the government’s cutting down on the film festival budget. We are no exception, although a significant increase in sponsorship, ticket, and merch sales helped us to gain financial independence to a certain extent. However, we were not wholly free to worry nothing about the size issue and had to consider downsizing the festival. However, with the sincere help and dedication of the city and provincial governments, we could do more than keep the usual size of the festival, thanks to the city government’s tourism promotion programs. The City of Jeonju attracts record-breaking visitors—last year, 15 million tourists visited Jeonju. The city is currently working on promoting diverse tourist attractions in addition to the highly popular Jeonju Hanok Village. We can take advantage of the attractions and use them for events; then, the city has visitors come and visit various places and enjoy the film festival and the city. An example of such a collaborative endeavor would be the 100 Films 100 Posters exhibition. One thousand posters will be placed at diverse tourist attractions in Jeonju to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the exhibition. Last year, we worked with Disney and had a star-wars themed event. It was highly successful and loved by visitors and younger audiences alike. This year, a new program with Pixar aims to replicate the success. Such collaborative programs will render JEONJU IFF with more venues for enjoying cinema, not a downsized one.

• Rethinking the role of JEONJU IFF in the Korean film industry

Local film networks and organizations are literally in danger of extinction. Since government support was cut to zero, many worry about sustaining the local film industry. The JEONJU IFF believes that losing the power of local cinema would put the film festival in crisis, so we sought a way to support and promote them. Open calls and awards for filmmakers based in Jeonju and support for local short films within the JEONJU Project program do not cease or shrink to operate. In addition, we launched Special Screening: Local Independent Cinema Showcase. This new section is to introduce the achievements and meaning of the existence of the local independent film industry. We also aim to support venues so local filmmakers can gather and share to strengthen and grow healthy networks.

Programs

In its 25th anniversary year, the JEONJU International Film Festival ignited the conversation around “digital” in the Korean film landscape. And as digitalization became ubiquitous, it sought to explore changes by championing independent and alternative cinema. What began as the “Jeonju Digital Project” has since evolved into the “JEONJU Cinema Project,” marking a transformative journey that yielded significant achievements for the last 11 years—spearheading the production of 37 Korean and international independent/art films through investment. Thus, this year’s milestone celebration takes on added significance as the festival come together with Korean Film Archive, itself celebrating its 50th anniversary, to commemorate the past and envision the future through a special exhibition aptly titled, “Re-wind: Korean Film Archive in JEONJU.”

Re-wind: Korean Film Archive in JEONJU will feature a curated selection of 10 distinguished films, among which four standouts have garnered acclaim at previous JEONJU International Film Festivals, four masterpieces of Korean cinema from the 1950s chosen by the Korean Film Archive to commemorate its 50th anniversary, and one representative work each honoring the late directors KIM Sooyong and LEE Dooyong, who departed in December of last year and January of this year, respectively. These films will be screened in their latest restored digital versions.

Following the esteemed footsteps of the Dardenne brothers from Belgium that graced the festival Taiwanese director Tsai Ming-Liang, who formed a bond with the JEONJU International Film Festival through A Conversation with God (2001), one of the series from the Jeonju Digital Project back in 2001, will visit Jeonju with his Walker series alongside his longtime collaborator, actor Lee Kang-Sheng, who embodies Tsai’s cinematic persona. From the series’ inception in 2012 to its tenth installment, Abiding Nowhere that premiered at the Berlinale 2024, audiences are granted a rare opportunity to appreciate all ten films with Tsai Ming-Liang and Lee Kang-Sheng.

As we reflect on the tenth anniversary of the Sewol Ferry disaster this year, the wounds inflicted by this monumental tragedy remain unhealed, and the nation has endured further tragedies like the horrific crowd crush in Itaewon. In commemoration of this solemn milestone, a special exhibition is dedicated to honoring the tenth anniversary of the Sewol Ferry tragedy, and the audience will encounter unreleased works and intimate, small-scale films crafted to memorialize the tenth anniversary. Thus we are invited on this opportunity to be reminded of “that day” and pay tribute to the lives lost.

JEONJU International Film Festival continues the “J Special: Programmer of the Year” program that started since the 22nd JEONJU IFF with director HUR Jinho taking over from actor BEK Hyunjin that assumed the mantle last year. As this year’s designated programmer, Director HUR invites audiences to delve into a curated selection of films that represent his cinematic career such as One Fine Spring Day and April Snow, as well as a collection of films that have deeply inspired him personally, a captivating and interactive session.

JEONJU Cinema Project, aimed at fostering low-budget feature film production by involving the JEONJU IFF as an investor in film production, has achieved consecutive success on the international stage. Notably, the program secured accolades at the Berlin International Film Festival’s Encounters section for Samsara in 2023 along with the Berlinale Documentary Film Award: Special Mention for DIRECT ACTION in 2024. Audiences will have the opportunity to experience the award-winning film DIRECT ACTION, alongside three other films, Lucky, Apartment, When Clouds Hide the Shadow, and Nothing in Its Place. Moreover, this year’s Korean Competition section highlights the significant progress made by films that underwent the Work In Progress program as part of the JEONJU Project last year, highlighting JEONJU IFF’s continued championing of new talents and the completeness of films.

As part of the program JEONJU Cinetour program, an effort to unite Jeonju’s prominence as a premier tourist destination in South Korea with JEONJU International Film Festival, JEONJU Cinetour X Meet, which held last year and continues this year, is a special program for interaction with audiences. It features an array of programs such as film screenings and insightful discussions in collaboration with management companies that have made impressive contributions to the Korean film industry, especially the independent film scene. This year, major entertainment agency VARO Entertainment and its affiliated actors JIN Goo, GONG Seungyeon, LEE Youmi, LEE Sookyung, BANG Hyorin, and LEE Hongnae, will visit Jeonju to present their works and participate in discussions.

Building on its barrier-free film production projects and special screenings introduced in 2023, JEONJU International Film Festival is set to further expand its commitment. In addition to showcasing works produced through production subsidies and conducting educational programs on barrier-free filmmaking for last year’s short film winner, the festival will present a diverse lineup of three feature films and seven short films including the inaugural sign language interpreted video film, aimed at enhancing the cultural enjoyment of the deaf and hard-of-hearing communities.

Alongside these special programs, the festival also offers a rich tapestry of thematic sections such as International Competition, Korean Competition, Korean Competition for Shorts, Korean Cinema, World Cinema, Cinema Fest, Expanded Cinema, Cinephile JEONJU, Frontline, Masters, and Midnight Cinema, all curated to showcase diverse and fresh perspectives.