July 06, 2015 12:34
The movie "Spirits' Homecoming," which depicts the plight of Korean sex slaves for Japanese troops during World War II, has a tough time finding a distributor.
The film, which took 13 years to make and was produced with crowdfunding, may not open at all.
Directed by Cho Jeong-rae, "Spirits' Homecoming" was supposed to open on Liberation Day on Aug. 15 this year, which marks the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II. But the opening had to be delayed.
The movie is based on a drawing by former sex slave Kang Il-chool (87). She sketched her memories in 2001 recollecting an incident in 1943 when she was almost burned alive by Japanese military police in China who discovered she was carrying an STD.
Cho wrote and rewrote the screenplay for 13 years as he searched for investors. Filming finally began late last year. After running into funding shortages, netizens started an online campaign to raise money. Around W600 million was raised through crowdfunding, and actors took part for no pay (US$1=W1,125).
But a lack of theaters willing to show the movie is yet another obstacle. "I looked at many distributors but was rejected," Cho said. "They questioned whether it would sell."
This has led to an online campaign to seek distributors.
Kang, the former sex slave, said, "It drives me to tears to see tens of thousands of people helping out with the movie. I hope I can see the movie before I die."
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