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Lee Byung-hun, Shin Min-ah Go to Cannes Film Festival

2005/04/20 Source

The movie "A Bittersweet Life", directed by Kim Jee-woon and starring Lee Byung-hun, has been invited to participate in the out-of-competition division of the 58th Cannes Film Festival. B.O.M. Film Productions, the producer of the movie, said April 19 that director Kim Jee-woon and actors Lee Byung-hun and Shin Min-ah will walk down the red carpet at the festival.

According to Studio Kanal, the movie's distributor in France, only works that have been recognized for their superior quality and commercial value are shown in the out-of-competition division. The company also added that this great honor is awarded only to films that have been shown in the Lumiere Theater and invited to the red carpet event. The festival features a total of 30 full-length movies every year in both the competition and out-of-competition divisions.

The appointment of "A Bittersweet Life" to the official section of the Cannes Film Festival at its first appearance is quite unprecedented, as most films succeed in entering the official section only after establishing their presence in the unofficial one, which is easier to enter. The French distributor of the movie said that feat can be ascribed to the movie's great potential. The fact that a noir movie and not an epic or art film, which easily earn extra credits for "orientalism", has advanced to the Cannes Film Festival as a commercial movie has inspired hopes that the status of Korean movies in the global film market will be elevated further.

"A Bittersweet Life" has shown an impressive performance abroad. So far, the movie has been sold to France, the U.K., Benelux, Thailand and Singapore, and is currently awaiting its opening in Japan on April 23 after recording the highest reservation rate among all Korean movies shown in Japan.

With its advancement to the Cannes Film Festival giving it momentum, the movie's potential to compete in major continental markets such as Spain, Italy, Scandinavia and even the U.S., has soared, opening a new chapter in the history of Korean movie exports.

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