Jeonju film fest to feature 217 films from 56 countries

JEONJU, South Korea-- The Jeonju International Film Festival (JIFF), South Korea's largest showcase of indie and art house films, will show 217 films from 56 different countries, as it is set to return to normal two years after the pandemic outbreak, the event's organizers said Thursday.

The 23rd edition will kick off its 10-day run on April 28, with the in-person opening ceremony to be held at the Sori Arts Center in Jeonju, some 240 kilometers south of Seoul.

JIFF said the sci-fi film "After Yang," directed and written by Korean American Kogonada, will open the festival. The film adaptation of Alexander Weinstein's novel "Saying Goodbye to Yang" had its world premier at the Cannes Film Festival last year.

The annual festival will be closed with the French drama "Full Time" by Eric Gravel.

Along with the two opening and closing titles, a total of 217 movies, up from the previous year's 186, will be screened in five theaters across Jeonju during the festival. Out of them, 112 films will be also available on JIFF's online platform.

Nine films were chosen for the Korean competition section, including "Mother and Daughter," "Archaeology of Love" and "Drown," and more than half of the invitees were helmed by female directors, said JIFF.

For this year's JIFF, director Yeon Sang-ho of "Train to Busan" (2016) will serve as a special programmer, while a screening program to present works of renowned director Lee Chang-dong will be also featured.

It took two years for the 23-year-old film festival to host the event on a normal scale, as its 21st edition took place entirely online after a month delay due to COVID-19, and the 22nd version was held in a hybrid format.

Source: Yonhap News Agency