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Jeonju International Film Festival Goes Online This Year

From 2000 to 2019, the spring of Jeonju has climaxed with the Jeonju International Film Festival (Jeonju IFF). For twenty years, the Jeonju IFF has communicated with the world through the films that pursue liberating expression and independence from social norms. This is how the Jeonju IFF, while still identifying itself as a ‘young film festival’, continues to be a world-renowned ‘Outlet for Cinematic Expression’.

This year has been different for the Jeonju IFF too. The opening date of the festival has been moved to May 28th due to the current COVID-19 pandemic. To minimize the risk of the coronavirus spreading, the festival’s Organization Committee has decided to hold the festival without audiences or even behind the closed-door during the festival period. However, after the festival is over on the June 6th, the films will be shown in the local cinemas for a prolonged period.

The Jeonju IFF will be held from the May 28th to the June 6th. However, this will be followed by the 15-week long screening period, which will be from the June 9th to September 20th. This is how the Jeonju IFF responds to the new environment ushered in by the COVID-19. During the festival period, the Jeonju IFF will focus on its original mission of jurying and rewarding the films. Thus, the minimum necessary number of people (including the juries and the movie directors, actors, and staffs) will watch each film for jurying. There are 8 international competition films, 11 Korean competition films, and 25 Korean short-film competition films.

Also, to reach out to public during this time of the coronavirus, if the producer and director agrees, certain films may still be available through online screenings and guest visits. Also, the festival’s main competition titles will be screened to the public during the prolonged screening period (until the September 20th).

The Jeonju IFF will continue as usual the programs to foster and support new filmmakers, including the Jeonju Project Market. Moreover, the special exhibition on the Quay Brothers, world-renowned masters of animation film, will be held at the Factory of Contemporary Arts in Palbok, until the June 21st. All off-line events will strictly abide by the safety measures, including hand sanitizing, temperature check, wearing a mask, and keeping distance.

The festival’s opening ceremony, too, will be different this year. Instead of the celebrities marching over the red carpet, the online opening ceremony will be live-streamed at the Jeonju IFF’s Youtube channel (https://www.youtube.com/user/jiffmedia) from 20:00 May 28th.

Although the celebrities, cheerful festival volunteers, and audiences are absent this year, the Jeonju IFF is remains loyal to the goal of developing the Korean film industry. The Organizing Committee recently revealed the official poster of the festival. The image of J for the 2020 JEONJU IFF has been created with torn and pasted paper, representing the free spirit of independent films as they break the rules and challenge all kinds of norms.

Just like any other year, the Jeonju IFF continues to suggest alternative modes of doing contemporary cinematic art and to support the cutting-edge independent and experimental films that dare to present on screen the stories that are unfamiliar and ‘coming in all shapes and sizes’. Despite the COVID-19 has changed the world we live in, the Jeonju IFF is still committed to the original mission of being an ‘Outlet for Cinematic Expression’. Let’s find out how the film festival can fare in the age of ‘untact’.

Jeonju IFF main event: May 28th ~ June 6th
Prolonged Screening Period: June 9th ~ September 20th
Address: Jeonju Cinema Street (Gosadong District); Factory of Contemporary Arts in Palbok
Direct any queries to: Jeonju IFF Jeonju Office (063-288-5433)

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  • Moe Sadiq محمد صادق

    one of the greatest film festivals in korea!

  • Ever Enrique Castillo Osorio

    Looks very interesting to attend!

  • I’m glad that Jeonju supports independent film makers through a festival such as IFF. I hope that the end of Covid-19 is near and it will motive people to participate more in cultural events such as this film festival.

  • Garrett Hohn

    I wish IFF success in the future to grow into a successful festival despite Covid-19.

  • Hieu

    I love IFF and could not wait to attend this event :)))

  • Jared Sandler

    Jeonju International Film Festival will effectively be almost four months long in 2020. Perhaps prolonging the amount of time that selected screenings will be shown in local cinemas is a great solution for Korean and international films to receive proper recognition and achieve Jeonju IFF’s original mission of being an outlet for cinematic expression. I will inquire more about this event and consider a trip to Jeonju for sure!

  • Sonia

    I’ve been going every year since 2005 (except 2009-10 when I was not in Korea). I’ll have to check out online screenings or make a trip to Jeonju this summer.

  • Sonia

    By the way, previous posters, it’s JIFF or Jeonju IFF!! The “IFF” is just for “International Film Festival” (as in BIFF (Busan) TIFF (Toronto) and JIFF (Jeonju)!