The South Korean Human Rights Commission has announced plans to assemble six high-profile Korean directors to shoot an omnibus-style collection of short films dealing with themes related to discrimination and human rights.
Five directors have already signed on to the project - Park Chan-wook (JSA), Jeong Jae-eun (Take Care Of My Cat), Park Kwang-su (A Single Spark), Lee Hyun-seung (Il Mare), and Yeo Kyun-dong (La Belle) - with negotiations underway to add a sixth well-known name.
Veteran filmmaker Im Kwon-taek, who won the Best Director prize at Cannes this year for Chihwaseon, is reportedly one potential candidate.
Shooting of the six films, which will be overseen by independent producer Lee Jin-sook (Die Bad), is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2002, with a release in commercial cinemas planned for early 2003.
Each short will run approximately ten minutes, for which the HRC will provide $42,000 (WON50m) to cover production costs. The Korean Film Commission (KOFIC) will also provide equipment and technical support.
Of the directors who have confirmed their participation, Park Chan-wook intends to focus on the plight of foreign labourers in Korea, Yeo Kyun-dong on the handicapped, Lee Hyun-seung on women's issues, and Jeong Jae-eun on the South Korean government's decision to publish names of those who commit sexual crimes against minors.
Korea's Human Rights Commission was formed in August of 2001 after eight years of petitioning by local human rights groups. The organisation, which is supported financially by the government but independently administered, reportedly sees the film project as a mean of bringing human rights issues to a mainstream audience.