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The 26th Busan International Film Festival honors the late Lee Choon-yun as a recipient of Korean Cinema Award

Published : Tuesday, June 1, 2021, 11:29 pm
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The 26th Busan International Film Festival which will be held from October 6 to October 15 for 10 days announces the late Lee Choon-yun as the Korean Cinema Award awardee to remember and honor his lifetime achievements.

“A big brother” to Korean film industry, Producer Lee Choon-yun who devoted his life to promote Korean Cinema has been awarded the Korean Cinema Award.

One of Veteran South Korean producers to Korean film industry, Lee Choon-yun passed away on May 11. The 26th Busan International Film Festival will honor Lee Choon-yun with Korean Cinema Award at the Opening Ceremony of the festival. The Korean Cinema Award has been awarded to the people or organizations who have contributed to promote Korean cinema around the world.

As the founder of a film production company, CINE2000 and chairperson of Korean Association of Film Art & Industry (KAFAI), Lee Choon-yun is like a big brother figure in Korean film industry. He started film production since 1980s and opened a new horizon of Korean-style horror with the Whispering Corridors series. He has granted opportunities to directors and actors, having produced Happiness Does Not Come In Grades (1989) directed by Kang Woo-suk, Their Last Love Affair (1996) directed by Lee Myung-se, Trio (1997) directed by Park Chan-wook, Art Museum By The Zoo (1998) directed by Lee Jeong-hyang, Interview (2000) directed by Byun Hyuk and The Terror, Live (2013) directed by Kim Byung-woo which he also acted in the film.

Lee is highly estimated to have greatly contributed to the rise of Korean cinema through innovative film productions with young directors of the time.

In addition to being a prolific producer, Lee was an advisor to the Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) since 1997 and played significant role in fostering freedom of expression when the festival was under fire from the previous administration after the screening of The Truth Shall Not Sink with Sewol (2014). He was considerably influential to many film people, being a leader in the Screen Quota movement and instrumental in the formation and running of all sorts of film festivals.

“Lee Choon-yun is the preserver of the BIFF. Especially, when the festival was under pressure of the previous administration’s blacklisting due to the screening of The Truth Shall Not Sink with Sewol (2014), he provided the crucial assistance voicing out,” said Huh Moon-young of the BIFF festival director.

Lee was one of the board memebers of the festival since 2016 in addition to being an intermittent advisor to the festival since 1997.

[Lee Choon-yun ㅣ KAFAI Chairpersonㅣ Korea]

Born in Sinan County in South Jeolla Province, South Korea, Lee Choon-yun studied theater at Chung-Ang University. He started his film career in 1983, following a stage career in the seventies. Having started with Widow Dance (1984), his major credits include My Mellow Rose, Happiness Does Not Come In Grades, Deep Scratch, Hwang Jin Yi, and The Terror, Live. As a chairperson of CINE2000, he produced Whispering Corridors series, which opened a new horizon of Korean horror. The Whispering Corridors, high school horror series launched a raft of prominent actresses’ and directors’ careers.

[Past Recipients of the Korean Cinema Award (Position held at the time of the award presentation)]

24th
BAE Yong-jae (Festival Director and Founder of Korean Film Festival in Paris, Korea)
Yoo Dong-suk (Former Festival Director of Korean Film Festival in Paris, Korea)

23rd
Martine THÉROUANNE (Vesoul International Film Festival of Asian Cinemas Festival Director and Co-Founder, France)
Jean-Marc THÉROUANNE (Vesoul International Film Festival of Asian Cinemas General Manager and Co-Founder, France)

22nd
Christoph TERHECHTE (Head of Berlin International Film Festival Forum, Germany)

21st
Laurence HERSZBERG (Director-general of Forum des Images, France)

20th
Wieland SPECK (Berlin International Film Festival Panorama Programmer, Germany)

19th
Corinne SIEGRIST-OBOUSSIER (Director of Filmpodium, Switzerland)

18th
Charles TESSON (Artistic Director of Cannes International Film Festival Critics’ Week, France)

17th
HAYASHI Kanako (Festival Director of Tokyo FILMeX, Japan)

16th
Julietta SICHEL (Former Program Director of Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, Czech Republic)

15th
Bruno BARDE (Festival Director of Deauville Asian Film Festival, France)

14th
Riccardo GELLI (Director of Korea Film Festival in Florence, Italy)
Jeannette Paulson HERENIKO (President of Asia Pacific Film.com, Former Director of Hawaii International Film Festival, USA)

13th
Richard PEÑA (Director of the Film Society of Lincoln Center, USA)

12th
Sabrina BARACETTI (Festival President of Udine Far East Film Festival, Italy)
Jean-François RAUGER (Head Programmer of the Cinémathèque Française, France)

11th
Martial KNAEBEL (Festival Director of Fribourg International Film Festival, Switzerland)
TERAWAKI Ken (Former Director-General of Cultural Affairs Department of Japan, Japan)

10th
Dieter KOSSLICK (Festival Director of Berlinale, Germany)
Thierry FRÉMAUX (Artistic Director of Cannes International Film Festival, France)

9th
YANO Kazuyuki (Festival Director of Yamagata International Documentary Festival, Japan)
Phillip CHEAH (Festival Director of Singapore International Film Festival, Singapore)

8th
PARK Byoung-yang (President of Asia Film Production, Japan)
LEE Bong-ou (President of Cine Quanon, Japan)

7th
Alain Jacques Louis PATEL (Festival Director of Deauville Asian Film Festival, France)

6th
Eva ZAORALOVÁ (Artistic Director of Karlovy Vary International Film Festival, Czech Republic)

5th
Martin & Anna Louisa GIROD (Directors of Stadtkino Basel, Switzerland)

4th
Serge LOSIQUE (Festival Director of Montreal International Film Festival, Canada)
LEE Young-il (Film Critic, Korea)

3rd
Gilles JACOB (Festival Director of Cannes International Film Festival, France)
Moritz de HADELN (Festival Director of Berlinale, Germany)

2nd
Aruna VASUDEV (Editor-in-Chief of CINEMAYA, India)
SATO Tadao (Festival Director of Fukuoka Film Festival, Japan)

1st
Adriano APRÀ (Festival Director of Pesaro International Film Festival, Italy)
Tony RAYNS (Film Critic, UK)
Alain JALLADEAU (Festival Director of Festival des 3 Continents, France)
Ulrich GREGOR (Director of International Forum, Berlinale, Germany)
Larry KADISH (Programmer of Museum of Modern Art, USA)
Ancha FLUBACHER-RHIM (Deputy Festival Director of Jeonju International Film Festival, Korea)
Simon FIELD (Festival Director of Rotterdam International Film Festival, UK)


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