UK, Korean film councils sign co-distribution agreement
by Naman Ramachandran
The ongoing Pusan International Film Festival witnessed the signing of a new film co-distribution agreement between the UK Film Council (UKFC) and the Korean Film Council (KOFIC).
The KOFIC will create a new fund of $200,000 to support the prints and advertising costs of UK films distributed in Korea over a two-year period, and in return Korean films will garner a similar level of support from the UKFC’s Prints & Advertising Fund.
This agreement will help the two partner countries grow audiences and enhance box office prospects of each other’s national cinemas in the respective home markets. The two agencies will exchange data to this effect to understand the market in each other’s countries.
With admissions having doubled to 143 million this year and an average ticket price of £3.35, South Korea is seen as one of the top ten most cinema markets of the world. Hence, the UKFC is backing three British companies – Bankside Films, Odyssey Entertainment and Silk and Steel Productions – at Pusan’s Asian Film Market, promoting 15 British titles in all.
The films include Bankside’s Shake Hands with the Devil, directed by Roger Spottiswoode; Odyssey’s An Education (director Lone Sherfig, writer Nick Hornby); and Silk and Steel’s jasmine.elf (director Lou Ye).
Pete Buckingham, UKFC’s head of Distribution & Exhibition said, “Film distribution is a complex and expensive process that is crucial to the future of a film. We are committed to supporting filmmakers and their films, and giving audiences everywhere more choice in what they see. In the UK the appetite for foreign films is well established, and digital structures are facilitating distribution. Now moving from the national to international level, we look forward to reciprocity in film distribution between South Korea and the UK.”
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