- Date17-06-30 15:56
Inauguration of Sri Lanka Film Fest at CGV Myungdong Station Cine Library in Seoul on Friday 23 June with Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the Republic of Korea Manisha Gunasekera; Executive Vice President Korea Foundation Ms. Yoon Keum-jin; Film Director Asoka Handagama; Festival Curator Anomaa Rajakaruna; and Ms. Suganthi Kadirgamar, wife of former Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar and Chairperson of the Intellectual Property Advisory Committee of Sri Lanka who attended the event as a special guest. Chair of Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) Ambassador Lee Inho, Ambassador of Colombia Tito Saul Pinilla, Minister Counsellor/Commercial of the Sri Lanka Embassy Jagath Abeywarna are also in the picture.
Introduction of Sri Lanka Film Fest by Film Director and Special Guest Asoka Handagama and Festival Curator Anomaa Rajakaruna.
Question & Answer session after the screening of Asoka Handagama’s ‘Let Her Cry’.
The audience writing comments after a film screening.
Warm Reception in Seoul for Sri Lanka Film Fest
Sri Lanka Film Fest: A Retrospective of Contemporary Sri Lankan Cinema opened to a packed audience on Friday 23 June 2017 at CGV Myungdong Station Cine Library in Seoul. The Festival which continued over the weekend of 24 and 25 June, entailed the screening of five contemporary internationally acclaimed Sri Lankan films which were well received by Korean movie lovers and the general public. The Festival was organised by the Sri Lanka Embassy in the Republic of Korea and the Korea Foundation, with the support of the Sri Lanka Tourism Promotion Bureau, Cathay Pacific Airlines and other sponsors.
The Sri Lanka Film Fest opened with the screening of Indika Ferdinando’s enchanting film ‘Singing Pond’. The film screening was preceded by a reception hosted by the Sri Lanka Embassy, an introduction to the Festival by Festival Curator Anomaa Rajakaruna and remarks on contemporary Sri Lankan cinema by Film Director and Special Guest Asoka Handagama. The opening was attended by Sri Lanka’s Ambassador to the Republic of Korea Manisha Gunasekera; Executive Vice President of the Korea Foundation Ms. Yoon Keum-jin; Korean dignitaries; the Seoul-based diplomatic corps; and senior representatives of the Busan International Film Festival, Jenonju International Film Festival, Green Film Festival in Seoul, Seoul International Women’s Film Festival, Korean Academy of Film Arts, and the National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, among others. Ms. Suganthi Kadirgamar, wife of former Foreign Minister Lakshman Kadirgamar and Chairperson of the Intellectual Property Advisory Committee of Sri Lanka also attended the opening as a special guest.
Internationally acclaimed directorial debut films ‘Dirty, Yellow Darkness’ (directed by Kalpana and Vindana Ariyawansa), ‘Red Butterfly Dream’ (directed by Priyantha Kaluarachchi) and ‘For a Son’ (directed by Suranga Deshapriya Katugampala) were screened over the weekend of Saturday 24 June and Sunday 25 June. The festival concluded with veteran film Director Asoka Handagama’s eighth internationally acclaimed film ‘Let Her Cry’, followed by a Q&A session where Director Handagama responded to questions posed by the audience. Each film was introduced by Festival Curator Anomaa Rajakaruna and included a Comments Box at the end, where the audience got the opportunity to place their comments.
The comments overall welcomed the universal appeal of the films as well as the rare opportunity to understand Sri Lankan cinema. Excerpts of some interesting comments (translated from Korean) are as follows: ‘The natural and simply way of life is one of the most important elements which we forget in normal films. The film shows the profound happiness we can find through small things in life. Thank you for giving me the chance to see this very good movie’. (Singing Pond). / ‘The movie provided information on an illness using a realistic narrative structure. I was able to learn about this illness as well. An impressive film about human life, human values and love’s worth’. (Dirty, Yellow Darkness). / ‘This was a really fascinating film. I will definitely recommend it to other people and filmmakers. Interesting usage of sound. Adding in a mythological element into a modern era with the confusion of love integrated. Its slow silence creates a space to really get into the stay. Brilliant!’ (Red Butterfly Dream). / ‘I could understand and empathise with the film character’s situation, because I raise kids myself. I think a mother’s sacrifice is the same all over the world. Thank you for giving me the chance to see this good movie.’ (For a Son). / ‘Even though it was an unusual subject matter to deal with, it was good because it placed emphasis on the country of Sri Lanka and the director’s own interpretation and way of expression. I hope such meaningful opportunities will be provided more often.’ (Let Her Cry).
The Sri Lanka Film Fest was organised by the Sri Lanka Embassy in Seoul as part of a series of promotional events launched to celebrate 40 years of diplomatic relations between Sri Lanka and the Republic of Korea. The Film Fest provided an opportunity to introduce Sri Lankan art cinema to the Korean public as well as to enhance the image of Sri Lanka in the Republic of Korea.
Embassy of Sri Lanka
Seoul, Republic of Korea
29. 06. 2017