New Emissary

Cinema Digital Seoul

South Korea remains ahead of the trend with this annual festival dedicated to digital film.

Back in 2002, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones (not my favourite film) got a lot of publicity for being the first major big-budget Hollywood movie to be filmed using digital film. And since then, others like 2009’s Slumdog Millionaire and this year’s blockbuster fantasy Avatar have been making the medium more and more widely accepted.

But in fact, for the past four years in South Korea, the annual Cinema Digital Seoul (CinDi) film festival has been celebrating lesser-known digital cinema selections from around the world. And this year’s event starts today and runs through the 24th. The 4th annual festival will this time feature 105 digital films from 27 countries at CGV Apgujeong in the capital city.

Amongst the members of the international jury garnering attention for this year’s festival is Thai director Apichatpong Weerasethakul, who won the top prize for his film Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives at the 63rd Cannes Film Festival earlier this year. And appropriately, Weerasethakul’s winning film will be opening the event.

In its preliminary coverage of the festival earlier this month, the Korea Times suggested that Cinema Digital Seoul is both ‘about showcasing films that boast a new technological medium’ and ‘showing films that push boundaries in terms of content.’  This year, the film fest will further promote such causes with the addition of a new competition section that will give extra opportunities to up-and-coming local (Korean) directors.