The gown, the grit and the gifts

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The gown, the grit and the gifts

Every year, the Busan International Film Festival brings with it a bag full of gossip and controversy. This year’s star-studded, nine-day event was no exception. Here are some of the hottest topics from this year’s festival.

Oh, that dress

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The dress that everyone was talking about this year belonged to little-known actress Oh In-hye. When Oh arrived at the opening ceremony on Oct. 6 wearing a revealing orange dress that left much of her cleavage exposed, the collective expressions of shock nationwide were audible. Her attire was even more of an issue because many Koreans were wearing black that day to commemorate the death of Apple founder Steve Jobs. The dress made Oh the most searched name online in Korea that week.

During an interview after the screening of her film “Red Vacance, Black Wedding,” the actress said that because of her lack of experience on the red carpet, she didn’t realize at her fitting just how revealing the dress was. In response, many netizens wrote that the actress had made a deliberate choice to attract attention and that she was replicating her sexy character in the film - a young woman who falls in love with her much older professor.

Luc Besson angry at Korea?

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French director Luc Besson revealed his former ill feelings about Korea during one of the more interesting press conferences of the festival.

The director was quite frank during the press event, saying that when his film “The Fifth Element” opened here in 1997, he was angry to discover 20 minutes had been cut without his consent.

It was reported the film was shortened to allow local distributors to schedule more screenings to increase profits.

Besson said that he was furious that this had happened without his knowledge and that for his new film “The Lady,” which was featured at this year’s festival, he made sure that none of the scenes were cut.

He added, however, that although he was angry about the incident, he does not harbor any ill will toward Korea and frequents Korean restaurants in France.

Acts of kindness

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Actress Gong Hyo-jin and actor Cha Seung-won said they used the money they received from shooting a fashion editorial with Harper’s Bazaar Korea to buy 1,000 festival tickets for underprivileged children in Busan.

While handing the tickets over to Kim Dong-ho, the festival’s previous director and current honorary chairman, the actress said she hoped that the tickets would provide the children with a fun experience.

The giveaway is one of the many charity projects carried out under the Cinema Angel program created by Korean actors.


By Cho Jae-eun [jainnie@joongang.co.kr]
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