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detail from a still from Oki's movie


If 2012 was the year Korean pop music conquered the world with “Gangnam Style,” 2013 is shaping up to be the year that Korean filmmakers make their mark on Hollywood. Kim Jee-woon (The Good, the Bad, the Weird) already brought us Arnold Schwarzenegger in The Last Stand. Later this year, Bong Joon-ho (The Host) releases his highly anticipated sci-fi adventure Snowpiercer. The Korean Film Festival DC is honored to host the local premiere of Park Chan-wook’s American debut feature Stoker, followed by a retrospective of his impressive body of work.

The growing prominence of these veteran directors proves what followers of Korean cinema have known for years: The country is bursting with talented filmmakers whose work is increasingly catching the attention of critics and film festival juries worldwide. This year’s festival features a host of award-winners, including O Muel's Jiseul, honored at the Sundance Film Festival; Kang Yik-wan’s tender drama Juvenile Offender, the surprise winner of multiple awards at the Tokyo International Film Festival; and Kim Ki-duk’s Pieta, which took home the coveted Golden Lion at the Venice Film Festival. We also present a panorama of the innovative, genre-blending popular films that Korea has become known for, including last year’s box-office sensation A Werewolf Boy. To top it off, the Freer debuts its brand-new 3D technology with a screening of the fantasy omnibus Weird Business.

This year’s Korean Film Festival DC features a new venue, the Angelika Film Center, and a new sponsor, the Korean Cultural Center DC, Embassy of the Republic of Korea. We look forward to working with these partners to bring treasures of Korean cinema to the Washington area for years to come.

Tom Vick
Curator of Film
Freer and Sackler Galleries, Smithsonian Institution

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