Bong Joon-ho‘s Parasite has become the highest-grossing international film of the year in the United States, and for good reason: the film, which won the Palme d’Or (the top prize) at this year’s Cannes Film Festival, arrived with a level of hype that we haven’t seen in quite some time outside of blockbuster circles. And since it’s one of the best movies of the past decade, it’s strong enough to carry all of that hype on its shoulders and still deliver on every level.
In a new video, Bong Joon-ho and actor Choi Woo-shik (who plays the poor Kim family’s only son, Kim Ki-woo) break down some of the key sequences in the movie, detailing how nothing – not even a passing bus in the background – is accidental.
Parasite Bong Joon-ho Video
I’m head over heels in love with this movie, and while I’m dying to listen to a commentary which breaks down the entire film (especially some of its more thrilling and surprising moments), it’s fascinating in the meantime to hear them talk about the practical sets that were constructed for this project. (You can see a photo of the blue screen mentioned in the video and read all about the wealthy Park family’s house in Architectural Digest.) I also appreciated the bit about doing three takes to make sure they got the timing right for that bus passing in the background: it’s such a subtle line drawn for the Kim Ki-woo character (aka “Kevin”) in the film, when he crosses over into a life of crime.
Meanwhile, because of the film’s international success, CJ Entertainment (the studio behind Parasite and Bong’s 2014 movie Snowpiercer), is looking to expand its operations even further. Variety reports that CJE is aiming to finance and produce two to three movies per year with budgets between $5 million and $50 million.
“Currently, we have a U.S development and production team that is split between Korea and the U.S., with Korea acting as the ultimate decision-maker, as well as being the provider of Asian IP and talent,” said Jerry Ko, CJ’s head of international. “However, as the business grows and becomes more stable, we’ll ultimately have the U.S. office act on its own. We have concrete plans to strengthen the U.S. operation in the near future.” It sounds like the company is also still interested in English-language remakes of its Korean movies, but as they told us in an interview this summer, don’t expect Parasite to be among those titles any time soon.
For more on Parasite, be sure to check out our two interviews with Bong Joon-ho here and here.
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