At an inaugural film fest the focus is on childrenChildren will be the focus of a film festival over the next six days in a small city in Gyeonggi province.
For the first time in the history of film festivals in Korea, Goyang is sponsoring what it hopes will be “like a cultural jubilee” for those under the age of 15.
From today until Wednesday, 142 children’s films from 32 countries will be shown at the Goyang Eoullim Theater.
Most of the films will run for less than one hour, considering that the audience will mostly consist of children, the organizers of the Goyang International Children’s Film Festival said.
Park Min-hui of the festival said it is a wonder that Korea hasn’t sponsored a children’s film festival before, while there have been so many international film events in Korea.
“There are over 170 children’s film festivals around the world,” Ms. Park said. “We are already too late to start a children’s film festival of our own.”
She mentioned the Giffoni Film Festival in Italy, a long-running film gathering that is commonly recognized as the Cannes of children’s film festivals, saying she envied the 40 years of its history.
To make the first Korean event successful, the organizers of the Goyang International Children’s Film Festival said they have come up with several ways to make it close to a true child-centered event by including special dress codes and a no-red-carpet policy.
The festival will not allow formal clothes at the opening ceremony tonight at the Goyang Eoullim Theater. Only those wearing casual clothes will be welcomed, the organizers said.
Instead of rolling out the red carpet for filmmakers and actors to promenade into the building, organizers said, they will use a saekdong carpet, or one with various colored stripes in red, blue and yellow.
The saekdong pattern has often been used as a color combination to make children’s traditional clothing in Korea.
The opening film will be director Torun Lian’s “The Color of Milk,” a Norwegian romantic comedy about a girl named Selma.
The story of the 12-year-old will focus on the troubles of first love.
“This festival will be an event that the entire family can come to and parents can enjoy with their children,” Ms. Park said.
“A child usually comes with his or her parent, so we thought the invited films should be fun even for the adults to come and watch,” she added.
by Lee Min-a
The festival can be reached from Wondang station on subway line No. 3. For additional information, call 031-902-7376 or visit the Web site www.gicff.com.
with the Korea JoongAng Daily
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