South Korea 's Puchon International Fantastic Film Festival (PiFan) held its closing ceremony yesterday (July 19), with the top award going to Thai film 13 by Chookiet Sakveerakul.

A psychological thriller noted for its engaging script about a salesman who enters into a high-stakes adventure game, the film also picked up the best Asian film award from the European Fantastic Film Festival Federation. Sold by Sahamongkolfilm International, the film and remake rights were previously picked up by The Weinstein Company.

The best director award went to Martin Weisz for his German cannibal film Grimm Love, based on a true story. The film's stars Thomas Kretschmann and Thomas Huber shared the best actor prize.

The best actress award went to Hong Kong's Charlene Choi for her performance in Oxide Pang's horror film Diary.

The jury award went to the US film Special, directed by Hal Haberman and Jeremy Passmore.

Festival director Han Sang-joon announced average seating occupancy was 62.82%, up from 34.70% in 2006. The fest's peak day with 75.13% occupancy was on the public holiday of July 17, Constitution Day. Foreign guests including press numbered 130, up 13% from last year, with total local and international guests going over 1,400.

The fest closed with the mystical Indonesian thriller Kala by Joko Anwar, which was a hit in that territory.

PiFan runs July 12-21 - with two extra days of special and repeat screenings left. In the eight main days of the festival, 214 films were screened from 33 countries.

After the public debacle that followed the political firing of former fest head Kim Hong-joon two years ago, the local industry is slowly coming back to PiFan, induced by well-respected festival director Han and his programming team's diligence.

But international sales teams based in Seoul - 45 mins away by car - were seldom if ever to be seen at the fest, and eager overseas guests, drawn also to commercial screenings of summer genre hits, noted the lack of the same local films in the fest and industry screenings - where they could have been viewed with the subtitles unavailable in local theatres.