Asian filmmakers must focus on local market: South Korean filmmaker

Mumbai:  Asian filmmakers must first cater to local markets rather than thinking of audiences abroad, advises renowned South Korean filmmaker and scriptwriter Im Sang-Soo.

“There is this attitude that smart directors want to go and make it big at the European film festivals and want to advance to the American film market. Even I did that in the beginning, but that is not right. (Asian) Filmmakers should try and focus more on the Asian market because that is a prospective film market,”said Sang-Soo.

Sang-Soo is here as a jury member of the International Competition category at the ongoing 14th Mumbai Film Festival here. And he is on a mission.

“I want to make some new changes in attitudes, that is why I took out time from my tight schedule to be a part of the festival,” he added.

This is the 50-year-old’s first visit to India, and he is excited about the film line-up, which includes a line-up of 230 movies.

“I’m happy to be a part of the festival because many of the films in the International Competition category are not yet out in the market,” he said.

Appreciated for his avant-garde style, as seen in his directorial debut “Girls Night Out”, followed by the 2000 film “Tears”, the filmmaker’s 2003 movie titled “A Good Lawyers Wife” won him commercial success and was in competition at the Venice Film Festival.

Sang-Soo’s most recent film “The Taste of Money” has traveled through numerous films festivals and garnered much acclaim and awards. His films have been showcased at leading festivals such as Cannes, Venice and San Sebastian, competing for top honours.

With a melange of international film extravaganzas happening all across the world, Sang-Soo says “the sole purpose of such initiatives should be to encourage young, independent filmmakers and give their work a platform to showcase.”

At a time when Hindi films are focussing on extensive marketing, the acclaimed filmmakers reveals he does not give importance to making his movies popular.

“I don’t really bother about making my film popular. As a filmmaker, the message my film is conveying is most important for me. I just want to set across the message what I want to and try to connect with the audience through that, rather than making a big budget film with top actors,” said Sang-Soo.


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