NAFF will be spearheaded by the It Project market, which organizers boastis'the first project market dedicated to genre cinema,' with the Fantastic Film School 2008: Asian Action Film training program and talent lab, NAFF roundtable forums, and industry screenings.
It Project will offer 16 genre projects including Taiwanese horror film director Kevin Ko's Starstruck, American director Frank Lin's hip-hop sci-fi film Ø DB, Korean martial arts director Jung Doo-hong's Shanghai, and Annecy-awarded animation director Lee Sung-gang's Snow Queen: The Legend Of Lake Baikal.
'Chinese genre film production is becoming very promising and so this year we are putting a special spotlight on three projects from China,' said programmer Kwon Yong-min, addingIt Projectwill continue to highlight a particular country each year.
Project Spotlight: Vol. 1 China is made up of Coldest Day director Xie Dong's mystery action horror film Speed Delivery, an extreme game-playing script set in modern-day Beijing; Sixth Generation director Li Xin's romance fantasy Magic Carrier, based on the historical novel Romance Of The Three Kingdoms, and Zhang Yong's horror thriller Bomb Shelter, set in a former Japanese occupation-era bio lab.
The It Project Jury, to award post-production support and up to $40,000 in prize money, is made up of The Grudge director Shimizu Takashi, Jumanji producer William Teitler, who is also working on theKorean projectRobot Taekwon V, and film aficionado Roger Garcia, who is director of the Korean Film Council (KOFIC)'s Filmmakers' Development Lab.
The Fantastic Film School will feature workshops with Seoul Action School directors Jung Doo-hong and Jung Chang-hyun, who were responsible for the action in films such as A Bittersweet Life, The City Of Violence, and The Chaser; Thailand's Ong Bak martial arts team; Hong Kong's Collin Chou fromForbidden Kingdom,Matrix 2 and 3; andJapan's Shaolin Girl martial arts team with Dakashi Nobutoshi, who was also motion capture actor on video games such as Biohazard, Dead Or Alive, and Tekken 5.
The School will also offer an Action Screenwriting Lab with director Kim Jin-sung (Geochilmaru - The Showdown), an Action Shooting Workshop with cinematographer Kim Hyung-gu (The Host), and an Action Editing Analysis Lab with directors Kim Tae-kyun (Volcano High), Kwak Kyung-taek (Friend), and Lee Myung-se (The Duelist), and Cine21 journalist Joo Sung-cheol, known for his action film expertise and DVD commentaries in the genre.
NAFF Forums will cover Asian co-productions with Kwak Jae-yong's Cyborg She - the PiFan closing film - as a case study, and a roundtable discussion on Asian action cinema.
The NAFF supervisors are Lee Joo-ik, whose pan-Asian co-productions include Seven Swords and Battle Of Wits; My Sassy Girl producer Shin Cheol, who is currently developing Robot Taekwon V; Gloria Fan, who is producing the Hollywood remake of Thai horror film Shutter; and Cannes Directors' Fortnight programmer Jeremy Segay.