It’s nice to hear some early news of what to expect at the London Korean Film Festival this year. On Thursday the KCCUK announced details of the opening film. It’s one that people have been wanting to see for a while: the sci-fi fantasy genre-bender Alienoid (외계+인 1부) by master of the ensemble cast Choi Dong-hoon (The Thieves, Assassination). The LKFF has secured the UK premiere, which is to take place at the ICA on 3 November. The 185-capacity screen is sure to sell out fast for such a movie, particularly with director Q&A, but maybe there will be a subsequent screening at another venue to accommodate those who won’t be able to get a ticket for the first night.
The festival will include a focus on actress Kang Soo-yeon who passed away this year at the tragically young age of 55. Her final film was the Netflix Sci-fi release Jung_E (정이, dir Yeon Sang-ho, 2022) but she is possibly best known for her role in Im Kwon-taek’s Surrogate Woman (씨받이, 1987). I’m hoping that room can be found in the retrospective for Im Sang-soo’s Girl’s Night Out (처녀들의 저녁식사, 1998) – a movie that’s always been hard to find on DVD. We’ll find out precisely what films will be screening soon.
There will be a forum devoted to Kang Soo-yeon’s career with speakers that include Kim Dong-ho (founder and former chairman of the Busan International Film Festival) and regular London visitor Kim Hong-joon (Director of the Korean Film Archive). The KCCUK’s film curator Lee Eunji promises many prominent filmmakers and scholars visiting from Korea for Q&As, celebrating the return of the festival to cinemas after the online and hybrid events of the past couple of years.
The festival’s branding has a fresh new look, with graphics designed by Hong Eunjoo and Kim Hyungjae:
Expect more announcements soon, with tickets on sale from 4 October.