‘Korean movies inspire Israeli filmmakers’

November 18, 2013
Israeli Ambassador Uri Gutman

Israeli Ambassador
Uri Gutman

Israeli Ambassador to Korea Uri Gutman expressed hope that Korean and Israeli filmmakers can work together to co-produce movies in the future.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Israel Film Festival at the Seoul Art Cinema on Tuesday, the envoy said that he and embassy staff will work together with Korean counterparts to make his wish come true during his tenure here.

He noted that some Israeli films are influenced by Korean filmmakers.

Ambassador Gutman quoted renowned director Quentin Tarantino as saying that the Israeli film “Big Bad Wolves,” which showcased during the Busan International Film Festival last month, was the best film of the year.

“Interestingly, the Israeli director Navot Papushado, (who co-directed the film along with Aharan Keshales), was greatly influenced by Korean movies directed by Kim Jee-woon and Park Chan-wook,” said the ambassador.

Park is an award-winning filmmaker whereas Kim first drew public attention with his 2010 film “I Saw the Devil.”

Seven contemporary Israeli films were screened during the festival which ended Sunday.

The Embassy of Israel said that the seven films, including “Footnote” directed by Joseph Cedar, earned prizes at world-class international film festivals such as Cannes, Berlin and Sundance.

“Footnote,” which featured a father-son rivalry, was chosen as the opening film of the festival. It was nominated for the best foreign language film section of the Academy Award and was also the winner of the best screenplay of Cannes Film Festival in 2011.

More than 100 people from all walks of life were present at the event.

Four Korean films, including “Masquerade: The King of Facade,” will be showcased in Israel during the Korean Film Festival to be held from Nov. 17 through 29.

Actor Lee Byung-hun, who played a lead role in the 2012 movie directed by Choo Chang-min, received critical acclaims for his great performance. The box office hit drew more than 12 million movie goers.