Guest Country Program
Busan International Short Film Festival's 'Guest Country Program' aims to provide an opportunity to understand not only cinematic art, but also culture, society and other art forms of foreign countries through a wide range of short films. So far, various countries have been invited as our guests, starting from France in 2012 to Canada in 2017. Now, it's New Zealand's and Switzerland's turn to present their varied films as this year's and next year's guest countries.
Guest Country New Zealand
The 7th guest country of BISFF is New Zealand, a country in the Southern hemisphere known for its natural beauty. Finally, the first Oceanian country has become our guest country after the ones in Europe, Asia, and North America.
Still, many South Koreans know little about New Zealand due to geographical distance. However, the relationship between the two started from 1950 when the Korean War broke out. During the war, many New Zealanders fought for us along with the United Nations' forces, and left a musical legacy by spreading the Maori love song 'Pokarekare Ana' (known as 'Yeon-Ga' in Korea). Now, the relationship between the two countries is more active than ever before, beyond the economic sector. For instance, many South Korean students and families are going to New Zealand for education.
There are also artistic exchanges. Computer graphic techniques developed by New Zealand, most famously for The Lord of the Rings, have been used for several Korean films as well. In addition, some monumental New Zealand films were screened in Korea. Nevertheless, so far no other venue in Korea has ever introduced New Zealand short films to Korean audiences. So, for the first time in our country, BISFF has prepared this year's Guest Country Program to highlight a wide range of New Zealand short films. The program is made of three main sections: 'New Zealand Panorama' which features a variety of recent short films, 'New Zealand Cineaste' which presents masterpieces of the most renowned directors of the country, and 'New Zealand Rainbow' which illustrates how people from different ethnic and cultural backgrounds live there together. I believe that the selected artists and their films will give you an opportunity to better understand this country.