IFFI 2016: Korean filmmaker Im Kwon-taek likes Shah Rukh Khan’s work
The International Film Festival of India (IFFI) 2016 begins Sunday evening, with the prestigious lifetime achievement award conferred on Korean director Im Kwon-taek at the opening ceremony.
South Korea is the focus country of the 47th edition of IFFI and it is only befitting that the country’s best known filmmaker gets the opening act. “I am very happy and I take this as a message that I should continue making films with the same passion that I have done till date,” Im told mediapersons in Goa on Sunday.
He has directed more than 100 films in a career spanning more than 50 years and is credited with the film movement New Korean Cinema or Korean New Wave. Along the way, Im has collected several honours, including best director at the 2002 Cannes Film Festival for Chi-hwa-seon (Strokes of Fire), the story of a 19th century Korean painter who changed the direction of Korean art.
Talking about Indian cinema, the 80-year-old filmmaker said he was found of Shah Rukh Khan’s work. He also liked 3 Idiots and Slumdog Millionaire. He made a film on Buddha and reincarnation, Im said to a question about Indian influence on Korean cinema, adding it would be a great to co-produce films with Indian directors.
But, his first brush with India wasn’t all that memorable. The director was here 20 years ago for a film festival in Trivandrum, now Thiruvananthapuram. Cultural differences made him run back, but once home, he missed India and its culture.
Like all directors, money is a worry for Im as well. “I have mostly made films on human stories and I made them in a short span so budget was not an issue. But the few films that required more, I have had to wait for years to get producers on board,” the writer-director said.
The 47th edition of IFFI will run till November 28 during which the Indian Panorama section will showcase 22 films. Fifteen films from across the world, including two Indian films, Ishti and Sahaj Paather Gappo, will compete in the international section.
Twelve films that won awards at Cannes this year will also be screened, including, I, Daniel Blake, which bagged the Palme d’Or, the highest honour. A special tribute section will honour Polish filmmaker Andrzej Wajda and Iranian filmmaker Abbas Kiarostami. The two giants of world cinema passed away this year.