The 18th Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) wrapped with the two New Currents Awards going to Ahn Seonkyoung’s Korean film Pascha and Byamba Sakhya’s Mongolia-Germany co-production Remote Control.

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Headed by Rakhshan Banietemad, the New Currents jury of Aoyama Shinji, Scott Foundas and Charles Tesson lauded Pascha: “For its intimate, highly original expression of an unusual love story.”

They awarded Remote Control: “For its sharply observed portrait of the tension between city and country, reality and fiction.”

Both films won $30,000 each.

Hannah Espia’s Filipino film Transit picked up a Special Mention: “For opening a window on to an unknown dimension of contemporary Israeli life and the fates of people caught in a desperate political situation.”

Maximilian Hult’s Sweden-Iceland coproduction Home picked up the inaugural Busan Bank Award, also known as the Audience Award for selected Flash Forward section films. It comes with $10,000 in Korean distribution support and another $10,000 for the director.

The port city of Busan experienced its first October typhoon in 15 years as Typhoon Danas hit Oct 8. BIFF moved its popular outdoor events indoors and, in some cases, to different time slots. Staff and volunteers on the ground handled the emergency situation smoothly. No accidents were reported aside from umbrellas flipped inside-out and festival guests drenched and blown about in strong winds as they tried to reach evening events – and in many cases failing.

The fest clocked up 217,865 admissions – only slightly down from last year’s record of more than 221,000. It is the second year in a row BIFF scored more than 220,000 admissions.

Running Oct 3-12, BIFF screened 299 films from 70 countries with 94 world premieres and 40 international.

BIFF winners

New Currents Awards

  • Pascha (Korea) Ahn Seonkyoung
  • Remote Control (Mongolia/Germany) Byamba Sakhya
  • Special Mention: Transit (Philippines) Hannah Espia

BIFF Mecenat Award (documentaries)

  • Asian winner (ex. Korea): Jalanan (Indonesia) Daniel Ziv
  • Korean winner: Non-fiction Diary, Jung Yoonsuk
  • Special Mention: Gureombi - The Wind Is Blowing (Korea) Cho Sung-bong

Busan Bank Award (a.k.a. Audience Award for Flash Forward film)
Home (Sweden/Iceland) Maximilian Hult      

KNN Movie Award (Audience Award)
10 Minutes (Korea) Lee Yong-seung

FIPRESCI (International Federation of Film Critics) Award
10 Minutes (Korea) Lee Yong-seung 

NETPAC (Network for the Promotion of Asian Cinema) Award
Shuttlecock (Korea) Lee Yubin

Busan Cinephile Award
Father’s Garden –The Love Of My Parents (Switzerland) Peter Liechti

Citizen Reviewers’ Award
Han Gong-ju (Korea) Lee Su-jin
Shuttlecock (Korea) Lee Yubin

CGV Movie Collage Award
Han Gong-ju (Korea) Lee Su-jin