Rain doesn’t ruin mood as PiFan gets underway

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Rain doesn’t ruin mood as PiFan gets underway

Despite the gloomy weather, the opening ceremony for the 17th Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan) went off without a hitch last night.

Ahead of the glitzy opening at 7 p.m., stars began arriving on the red carpet outside the Koryo Hotel from 6 p.m.

Lee Hyun-woo and Fuji Mina, who were picked as this year’s ambassadors, were present, as were the hosts for the evening, actor Shin Hyun-joon and Sooyoung from Girls’ Generation.

Lee Byung-hun and Jun Ji-hyun were presented with the Producers’ Choice Awards while Park Shin-hye took home the Fantasia Award, given to the actor most-wanted by Bucheon citizens.

In addition, there were some 100 actors and directors from Japan and Hong Kong in attendance for the screening of the opening film, “The Congress,” an animation directed by Ari Folman.

The weekend is also packed with spectacles, from screenings to concerts, that will take place Saturday and Sunday outside Bucheon City Hall. The PiFan-Award photo exhibition and a book fair will take place until Thursday at the City Hall lobby.

There’s also free outdoor screenings taking place at Sosa-gu Office today and at Sunggok Elementary School on Monday.

For the fearless, there is “Holic’s Night,” a horror-themed party tonight at 10 p.m., which the organizers claim to be an event where anyone can be “as wild as they like.”

On July 28, the 11-day film fest will end with awards given to the best films from five segments consisting of the Puchon Choice: Feature International Competition, Puchon Choice: Short International Competition, European Fantastic Film Festival Federation Asian Award, NETPAC Award and LG Hi-Entech Award.

The most coveted prize is the Best of Puchon Awards in the Feature International Competition, with the winner receiving 15 million won ($13,275).

Although just a day in, PiFan already set a new record in its history for selling out all of the opening and closing day tickets in the shortest amount of time - they were all gone on the first day they went on sale. Organizers are expecting similar results for ticket sales of some 230 films to be screened in the next week.

BY CARLA SUNWOO [carlasunwoo@joongang.co.kr]

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