In Bucheon, Things Getting AnimatedThe Bucheon International Students Animation Festival 2001, which started Saturday, continues through Wednesday at the Boksagol Culture Center in Bucheon city, Gyeonggi province. The annual festival features a wide variety of animated styles and creations, including an international competition for animated films produced by college students, as well as various screenings and workshops.
The Bucheon festival has established itself as a most successful event in just three years since 1999. In the first year, for instance, students from 13 Korean universities entered 85 works in the competition, and more than 56,000 visitors attended the festival.
Last year, students from seven countries entered 238 works, and 68,000 animation-lovers visited the festival.
This year, 151 works from 12 countries were entered in the preliminary round of the competition. Only 40 of the works made to the final and will be featured at the screening, "Bucheon International Animation Festival Recommendation 40."
After the two-day screening that ends on Monday, the six best animated shorts will be selected and awarded official prizes, including the grand prize of 5 million won (about $3,850).
The Curtain Rises
The short film that opened the festival was a Hungarian 3D animated film, "The Sexual Life of Fireflies," which has been well received at other film festivals around the world. "Run Dim" is a feature-length futuristic Korean film about nuclear war, produced by Digital Dream Studios. It is a sign of these electronic times that both films chosen for the opening of the festival are digital films. The opening ceremony also featured a special screening of "This Kind of Going Home" by Park Se-Hyeong, a professor at Korean National University of the Arts.
The festival has organized special screenings of films that have been nominated for Academy Awards or were shown at the Annecy International Animated Film Festival.
It is a rare chance for Korean students to learn about the world's best animated films. "Father and Daughter" by Michael Dudok de Wit, "The Periwig Maker," by Steffen Schaffler, and "Rejected," by Don Hertzfeldt, will be featured Monday at 7 p.m.
One of the most distinctive features of the festival is the great animation from all over the world. There will be screenings for 36 films that have been selected by some of the world's best-known animated festivals, such as the Ukraine's Krok Festival and Hungary's Kecskemet Film Festival.
Also featured are many highly acclaimed animated films, such as "Kiki's Delivery Service," by Hayao Miyazaki and films by Peter Chung, a Korean-born animator. His series "Aeon Flux" was made famous through MTV in the United States. On Monday at 3 p.m., visitors to the festival will have a chance to talk to Mr. Chung and watch his creations.
A Chance to Network
The festival places much emphasis on helping Korean students win jobs at animation studios. Thus, workshops and co-ops are an important part of the festival.
Talented young animators who catch the attention of studio heads can win internships, scholarships and jobs.
For more information, visit www.pisaf.or.kr or call 032-325-2061.
by Ki Sun-min