Good news for lovers of Korean cinema! It’s been announced that the latest Park Chan-wook film will begin production later this year, in the fall. The upcoming film has been described as a melodrama by his production company Moho Film.
The South Korean filmmaker is best known for The Vengeance trilogy, a series of films that focus on the subject matter of revenge. The trilogy consists of Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance (2002), Oldboy (2003), and Lady Vengeance (2005). His last feature-length film, The Handmaiden, released in 2016, included some over-the-top elements in what was ultimately a love story, so it shouldn’t be too difficult for the director to make the transition. Of course, being a Park Chan-wook film and all, the film’s genre is said to be hard to pinpoint. This shouldn’t come as a surprise considering the darker subject matter found in his previous work, so fans shouldn’t worry too much if this seems like a departure.
He was previously attached to other projects as well, such as The Brigands of Rattlecreek, a western written by S. Craig Zahler, and a remake for Costa-Gavras’ 2005 film The Ax, but it looks like those projects have been put on hold for the time being.
Casting details have also been announced, with Park Hae-il (Memories of Murder) and Tang Wei (Lust, Caution) set to play the leading roles. The film’s title translates to The Decision to Break Up, which might give us a hint about the film’s plot, but as with all Park Chan-wook films, we’ll just have to wait and see.
Korean cinema has been a focal point in the film industry ever since Parasite took the world by storm in this year’s awards season, and became the first foreign-language film in history to take home the Oscar for ‘Best Picture’. Let’s just hope that audiences are still willing to overcome the ‘1-inch-tall-barrier’ of subtitles.
Words by Kai-Ming Chow