This year, on the 20th anniversary of the Seoul International Women’s Film Festival, a new section, ‘Korean Feature Competition’ will commence. The entries for this section are selected from feature and documentary films directed by Korean female filmmakers in an attempt to recognize their achievements, and to encourage gender equality in the film industry. Since the commencement of our voyage in 1997, female filmmakers and film personnel have continued to expand the world of female film making by fighting tirelessly against gender inequality and gender discrimination prevalent in the industry. ‘Korean Feature Competition’ will allow the audience to witness the potential the female film personnel had built up for the last 20 years and the twenty-one films that were submitted will further propagate this potential and its feminist views.
The subject matter of this year’s submissions cover a variety of issues in which feminist concerns are all deeply infused; habitual violence women face on an everyday basis, issues of poverty and unemployment of the younger generation, the #MeToo movement, migration and diaspora, motherhood, trauma, disaster, environment, disability and handicap, female solidarity, etc. Despite the increase in the number of female filmmakers, their films, and the influences induced by feminist issues and concerns, it is still an undeniable fact that gender inequality in the industry is causing an unfair situation for female filmmakers, and the unsound reality caused by that inequality is affecting many steps of film making such as production, distribution and screening. It is hoped that SWIFF’s new section, Korea Feature Competition, will serve as a cornerstone that will aid in challenging these discriminatory practices and unfair realities by celebrating female filmmakers’ achievements. The five finalist features chosen after a competitive preliminary selection all deal with feminist concerns as well as moral interests and affection towards its objects. The winner will be awarded the title of Best Picture, and along with a trophy, 10 million KRW prize money.
BAE Jooyeon / Programmer