Edited by Hong Hyun Jung
Translated by Kim Hoyeun
Last year’s Korean films can be summarized with two films: Parasite and House of Hummingbird. These two films presented directions for Korean commercial and independent films, which are constantly rumored to be facing a crisis. Parasite perfectly embodies its genre’s originality, balancing commerciality and artistry and gives fresh stimulus to the film industry, where only mass-produced commercial films are poured out. House of Hummingbird, on the other hand, has shown a new potential for independent films by revealing a new level of interactions with the audience.
As a word like ‘UBD’ show, currently, there are more disappointments than satisfactions with Korean movies. But, it seems like they are trying to make a difference little by little. Upcoming movies in 2020 are showing various attempts. Peninsula (literal translation), a sequel to TRAIN TO BUSAN, rare attempts in SF and musical genre, Seobok, Starship Victory, and HERO (all literal translation) and films starring female actors, Call, The Day I Died (literal translation), and Special Delivery (literal translation) are getting ready to meet the audience.
News of the production for the new movies continues. A new attempt in the production has begun by breaking away from the usual combinations of the actors. This article will introduce eight films that have already started filming or have been preparing for filming. Among them, let’s see if there’s a movie you would want to see.
Mathematician From A Strange World (literal translation)
Director: Park Dong Hoon
Starring: Choi Min Sik, Kim Dong Hwi, Park Hae Joon, Park Byung Eun
First Day of Filming: December 2
Production: Joy Rabbit
Choi Min Sik, who played affectionate relationship between the sovereign and the subject with Han Seok Kyu in Forbidden Dream, will collaborate with a newcomer Kim Dong Hwi in his next film. Mathematician From A Strange World is a movie about a genius mathematician who defected from North Korea and a high school student who gave up on math,
Choi Min Sik, who plays the role of Hak Sung, a North Korean defector and a former mathematician who lives as a private security guard while hiding his identity, is expected to show his signature warm and humane performance once more. Kim Dong Hwi, a rookie actor, selected at the odds of one in 250, plays Ji Woo, a high school student who goes to school with only the top 1% of students and gives up on math.
Park Hae Joon plays the role of Ahn Ki Chul, the only friend and a supporter of Hak Sung and Park Byung Eun will be Ji Woo’s homeroom teacher as well as a math teacher. This is the first commercial film directed by Park Dong Hoon, who made his feature film debut in 2009 with Enlightenment Film.
Confession (working title)
Director: Yoon Jong Seok
Starring: So Ji Sub, Kim Yun Jin, Nana, Choi Kwang Il
First Day of Filming: December 16
Production: Realies Pictures
Realies Pictures, a production company that produced triple million-viewers films of Masquerade and Along with the Gods series, has started producing a new thriller film.
Confession, starring So Ji Sub, Kim Yun Jin, Nana, and Choi Kwang Il, depicts a story of a man who has been named a suspect in a locked-room murder case approaching the truth with the help of his lawyer. So Ji Sub plays the role of Yoon Min Ho, the head of a promising IT company facing the biggest crisis in his life when he was named as the prime suspect in a murder case, while Kim Yun Jin plays the role of Yang Shin Ae, a capable lawyer with 100% winning rate. The movie follows these two characters as they dig into the truth of the mystery case.
Nana, who is on a path to a successful actor, and Choi Kang Il, who built a solid career in theater, will each play the role of Kim Se Hee, who holds the key to the truth and Han Young Seok, who exposes Yoo Min Ho’s hidden truth, intensifying the story. Confession, in which the four actors first met, is directed by Yoon Jong Seok of Marine Boy.
Yaksha (working title)
Director: Na Hyun
Starring: Seol Kyung Gu, Park Hae Soo
First Day of Filming: December 31
Production: Sang Sang Film
Park Hae Soo, who won the Blue Dragon Film Award for his first lead-role film By Quantum Physics: A Nightlife Venture last year, will collaborate with actor Seol Kyung Gu in his next movie. Na Hyun, who proved himself with a box office success with his previous work, Prison, a movie with a unique setting where the perfect crime is planned in prison, has returned with his new film Yaksha.
Yaksha is a story of an agent from an oversea team of national intelligence service with a nickname ‘yaksha’ go searching for a missing North Korean high-ranking official in Shenyang, China, a battleground for spies. There, he will face a prosecutor who got demoted to the place. As Seol Kyung Gu plays the role of Kang In, a cold-blooded agent who is heartless enough to be called ‘yaksha’, a people-eating ghost, and Park Hae Soo plays the role of Ji Hoon, a prosecutor who got demoted to Shenyang after living his entire life according to the law, they will go up against each other.
In addition, Yang Dong Geun, Lee El, Song Jae Rim, and Park Jin Young (GOT7) will each play the role of Kang In or Ji Hoon’s co-workers.
Vacation (working title)
Director: Yook Sang Hyo
Starring: Kim Hae Sook, Shin Min Ah, Kang Ki Young, Hwang Bo Ra
Genre: Fantasy, Drama
First Day of Filming: January 9
Production: Story Forest
Kim Hae Sook and Shin Min Ah meet as mother and daughter in the next film by director Yook Sang Hyo, who has been acclaimed for his previous work, Inseparable Bros. Vacation is a fantasy drama about a miraculous time as a mother who takes three days leave from heaven to stay by her daughter’s side.
Actor Kim Hae Sook, who gives enough trust to be called “everyone’s mother,” will play the role of Park Bok Ja, who comes to this world to meet her daughter. Shin Min Ah, who is set to release a mystery thriller Diva, a movie about diving, will play the role of Bang Jin Ju, who runs a restaurant at her mother’s house.
On top of that, Kang Ki Young, who was noted for her acting in Crazy Romance, and Hwang Bo Ra, who has been active in both big and small screens, will play the roles of ‘Guide’, who guides Bok Ja to the world and Mijin, a longtime friend of Jin Ju.
Voice (working title)
Director: Kim Gok, Kim Sun
Starring: Kim Moo Yeol, Byun Yo Han
Genre: Crime, Action
First Day of Filming: End of January
Production: SOO Film
Distributor: CJ Entertainment
Brother directors of Horror Stories series, Kim Gok and Kim Sun, return with realistic horror story. Voice, which features voice phishing of financial fraud crimes, which is not easily revealed as the methods are getting more subtle and meticulous every day.
Voice, which paints the world of telephone financial fraud, is a story of a man who loses everything from a trap of voice phishing tries to infiltrate the organization’s headquarters in China and meets with the criminal mastermind. Byun Yo Han will play the role of Seo Jun, who loses everything and jumps into the world of voice phishing, and Kim Moo Yeol plays the role of Gwak-Pro, the mastermind behind the voice phishing organization, heralding his transformation into a villain.
Count (working title)
Director: Kwon Hyuk Jae
Starring: Jin Sun Kyu, Sung Yu Bin, Oh Na Ra, Ko Chang Seok, Jang Dong Joo
First Day of Filming: First Half of 2020
Production: Film K
Distributor: CJ Entertainment
Jin Sun Kyu, who has emerged as one of the best big-screen actors since The Outlaws, is starring in a new film produced by Film K, which produced On Your Wedding Day and EXIT.
Count is the story of a former gold medalist who became a physical education teacher and a rebellious teenager who throws a punch at the unfair world together. Jin Sun Kyu plays the role of Si Heon, a former gold medalist with a stubborn personality, and works with Sung Yu Bin, who plays the role of Yoon Woo, a rising star in boxing with only spite left. Jin Sun Kyu will act in a Gyeongsangdo dialect, while Sung Yu Bin will show a rough performance that he has never shown before.
A newcomer Jang Dong Joo, who was acclaimed for his role as a murder suspect in Class of Lies, plays Hwan Ju, who dives into boxing to avoid his gangster life. Oh Na Ra, a star of SKY Castle and Woman of 9.9 Billion, plays the role of Si Heon’s wife Il Sun while Go Chang Seok plays the principal of the school and Si Heon’s teacher.
Three Days (working title)
Director: Hyun Moon Sup
Starring: Park Shin Yang, Lee Min Ki
Genre: Occult, Horror
First Day of Filming: First Half of 2020
Production: i Film
Park Shin Yang returns to the big screen in seven years after Man on the Edge. Three Days depicts a struggle that takes place as the devil wakes up inside the heart of the daughter during the three days of her funeral. Park Shin Yang plays the role of Cha Seung Do, who suddenly loses his daughter in the movie.
Lee Min Ki, who just finished The Lies Within, has also confirmed his appearance, returning to the big screen in five years after Shoot Me in the Heart. He will play the role of Ban Shin Bu, a priest who has mastered the exorcism in the Vatican, performing his first priest character. This is the first feature film by director Hyun Moon Sup, who won the Fantastic Short Film at the Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival for his short film, Last Interview.
Dream (working title)
Director: Lee Byung Hun
Starring: Park Seo Joon, Lee Ji Eun
First Day of Filming: undecided
Production: October Cinema
Distributor: Megabox Plus M
Lee Ji Eun will make her debut on the screen for the first time since she debuted as an actor in 2011 with Dream High. Park Seo Joon also confirmed his role in director Lee Byung Hun’s new film, Dream, who attracted 16 million viewers with his last work, Extreme Job.
Dream, which became the talk of the town with the star actors and director coming together, depicts the challenges of the soccer player, who faces the biggest crisis of his career, and national team members who never played with a ball before, trying out for the Homeless World Cup. Park Seo Joon plays the role of Yoon Hong Dae, a soccer player who is being disciplined after getting swept up by an unexpected incident, and Lee Ji Eun plays Lee So Min, a producer of a broadcasting station who dreams of success by producing a documentary of the improvised national soccer team, directed by Hong Dae.
Attentions are being paid to whether Lee Ji Eun and Park Seo Joon, who received good responses from all their previous works, will be able to succeed once again with a new film directed by Lee Byung Hun, who has been recognized for his unique characters and brilliant story.