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Cinematic Discovery of Seoul

2006/02/23 | Permalink | Source

As a 600-year-old city, Seoul has a variety of faces and treasures, ranging from ancient palaces to futuristic architectural structures.

Some Seoul residents are not even aware of these diverse visages, and are astonished when they see unfamiliar views in films that they discover were made in the city.

By digging up scenes in films or TV series, you can take an interesting journey to the old capital. Here are some examples that may trigger you to recall some films.

Namsangol Hanok Village in central Seoul is one of the most popular venues for historical dramas. Many important scenes from actor Bae Yong-joon's 2003 film, "Untold Scandal", were shot here.

It is near Exit 3 or 4 of Chungmuro Station on subway line 3 or 4.

The Sodaemun prison exhibition in Independence Park is a historic venue. At the prison, which opened during the Japanese colonial rule, independence patriots were detained or killed. The 2002 film "Jail Breakers - No. 815", featuring actor Cha Seung-won, was filmed at this penal complex, which became an exhibition in 1992.

It is near Exit 4 or 5 of Tongnipmun Station on subway line 3.

The road linking the Taehanmun Gate of Toksu Palace to the Chong-dong crossroad is often called Chongdonggil. It is famous for the glorious tints of its autumn foliage. In the 2000 film "Bungee jumping of their own", main female character Tae-hi, played by the late Lee Eun-joo, comes under the umbrella of male hero In-u, played by Lee Byung-hun. From the moment of their first encounter on a rainy day, their timeless love story begins.

It is near Exit 1 or 2 of City Hall Station on subway line 1 or 2. It is also reachable from Exit 5 of Sodaemun Station on subway line 5.

Director Kim Ki-duk won the Silver Bear for Best Director at the 56th International Film Festival in Berlin for his 2004 film, "Samaria", which deals with teen prostitution. It was filmed in 10 days. Important scenes such as a murder scene and scenes of leading character Yo-jin and her friend hanging out and waiting for their male customers' phone calls, were shot in Sonyudo Island in western Seoul.

It is a 10-15 minute walk from Hapchong Station on subway line 2 or 6. It is also reachable from Mangwon Station on subway line 6.

The 2003 film Singles portrays the lives and loves of single women in their late 20s in our times. For her role in the film, Jang Jin-yeong was recognized as the Best Leading Actress at the 24th Blue Dragon Film Awards. The scene was shot at the COEX Aquarium in southern Seoul. In this scene Na-nan, played by Jang, meets Su-hon, played by Kim Joo-hyuk. The indoor aquarium presents more than 600 kinds of marine life.

It is near Samsong Station on subway line 2.

Some of the information for this article and a photo are taken from the recently published book, "Seoulun Chigum Chwaryongjung (Seoul Is Being Filmed Now)".

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