Wanted: Overseas Korean Filmmakers

Wanted: Overseas Korean Filmmakers

KOFIC(Korean Film Council) continues 2nd Filmmakers Development Lab in Association With the Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawaii.

March 26, 2007 (Los Angeles) - In a major initiative to nurture and encourage emerging Overseas Korean filmmakers to bring their stories to the screen, the Korean Film Council (KOFIC) announced today KOFIC Filmmakers Development Lab 2007.

After the sensational success of the first Filmmakers Development Lab in 2006, the KOFIC Filmmakers Development Lab will this year broaden its reach to include not only North American but to all international Korean filmmakers around the world. The Lab will be held in Hawaii from August 26th to September 2nd, in partnership with the ACM(the Academy for Creative Media) at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu; CAAM(Center for Asian American Media) in San Francisco, and the IFP in New York. Following in September and October, the Lab Fellows will attend the IFP in New York and PPP (Pusan Promotion Plan) in Pusan International Film Festival in Korea to meet with relevant film industry representatives and organizations whom could potentially produce their projects.

"Through this incubator type of project, we will be able to promote a sharing and a merging of ideas between Korean and filmmakers of Korean descent around the world," states Ms. An Cheong Sook, KOFIC's Chairperson. "It is important to us that through this cross cultural experience, these filmmakers will be able to bring their talents and stories to markets and audiences around the world."

"Following the tremendous success of last year's inaugural KOFIC Filmmaker's Development Lab in partnership with the Academy for Creative Media (ACM) at the University of Hawaii, all of us at the ACM are thrilled and honored to continue our association with the Korean National Film Council's 2007 Filmmaker's Development Lab. We look forward to hosting old friends and new ones this year in Hawaii and the opportunity to discover and nurture emerging Korean filmmakers from around the world." said Chris Lee, Director of the Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawaii.

Stephen Gong, Executive Director of CAAM adds "The Center for Asian American Media is absolutely thrilled to be part of KOFIC's 2007 Filmmaker Development Lab. This is one of KOFIC's many groundbreaking activities that illustrates their visionary leadership in the development of artists in international cinema."

Selected participants will be paired with industry mentors from both Korea and the United States, in an intensive week-long retreat. The goal of the Filmmakers Development Lab is to enable participants to develop a high quality script that could be presented to financiers and production companies. In addition, KOFIC is announcing that one of five Filmmaker Development Lab projects this year will be awarded USD 40,000 from KOFIC's Production Subsidy fund.

"These are exciting times for filmmakers and films from non-traditional sources," expresses KOFIC Filmmakers Development Lab director, Roger Garcia, a well-regarded international film consultant and producer. "(The Lab) not only looks to identify the talent but also to present real-world scenarios to participants in developing and presenting their projects.

"While this project is an ambitious one, we believe the talent is there throughout the Korean diaspora," adds Garcia. "And through this incubator program, we hope to develop the next generation of great new filmmakers."

“IFP applauds KOFIC in its smart approach to developing Korean talent worldwide, irrespective of national borders,” says Michelle Byrd, Executive Director of IFP. “We are pleased to welcome the Lab participants to this year's IFP Market Emerging Narrative program, a talent showcase which provides forty diverse screenwriters and writer/directors a forum to present new feature projects, meet with producers, and network with industry professionals who can help accelerated the development of their work, as well as their filmmaking careers.”

The Korean Film Council is based in Seoul, Korea with a satellite office in Los Angeles. Its mission is to raise the standard of Korean films, and to promote the Korean film industry at home and abroad. KOFIC provides and supports programs to develop creative filmmakers, improve the production of low-budget films, raise the profile of Korean cinema, and create a network between filmmakers in the Korean, overseas Korean and international communities.

The Academy for Creative Media at the University of Hawaii, founded just three years ago, emphasizes digital cinema, computer animation and videogame design, and critical studies. Its student films have been screened at major national and international festivals. It is developing a Center for Indigenous Filmmaking, which will embrace story-tellers from Hawaii, the Pacific and Asia.

The Center for Asian American Media (CAAM) is a non-profit organization dedicated to presenting stories that convey the richness and diversity of Asian American experiences to the broadest audience possible. CAAM does this by funding, producing, distributing and exhibiting works in film, television and digital media.

IFP is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to building the community for a full range of independent film. Headquartered in New York City, its year-round and annual programs offer education, mentorship and worldwide industry access to members and the independent film community at large. The IFP Market is a five-day national program connecting close to 200 projects with financiers, producers and programmers before they're completed and on the festival circuit.

Information on the KOFIC Filmmakers Development Lab, and how to apply is available online at http://fdl.kofic.or.kr

The deadline for submissions is April 30, 2007.

Sun-young Moon

Published: Monday, April 16, 2007