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Director Jang Jae-hyun’s ‘Exhuma’ invited to Berlinale

By Kim Da-sol

Published : Jan. 18, 2024 - 18:15

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“Exhuma” (Showbox) “Exhuma” (Showbox)

Occult thriller "Exhuma" by Jang Jae-hyun, known as a master of Korean occult films, has been invited to the 74th Berlin International Film Festival.

The film's distributor, Showbox, said Thursday that the movie will be presented in the Berlinale’s Forum section, dedicated to “avant-garde and experimental” film genres and discovering “fascinating new faces,” according to the festival organizer. Berlinale opens Feb. 15 for a 10-day run.

Previously invited Korean works in that section include director Bong Joon-ho’s "Snowpiercer" (2013), director Kim Tae-yong’s "Late Autumn" (2011) and director Kim Ji-woon’s "A Tale of Two Sisters" (2003).

Jang’s first work in five years, “Exhuma” boasts a cast of renowned actors including Choi Min-sik, Yoo Hae-jin, Kim Go-eun and Lee Do-hyun. The movie is veteran actor Choi’s first-ever occult genre flick in his 35-year acting career.

“Exhuma” centers on Sang-deok (Choi), who is tasked with relocating a tomb with Young-geun (Yoo), an undertaker, after young exorcists Hwa-rim (Kim) and Bong-gil (Lee) receive a hefty sum of money and discover through a supernatural phenomenon a dark omen related to a wealthy Los Angeles family.

Earlier this week, two other Korean films were announced as having been invited to the Berlinale: Don Lee’s action franchise "The Roundup: Punishment," screening during the special gala section, and director Joung Yu-mi's animation "Circle," competing in the short film category.

“Exhuma” is slated for a February opening in local theaters.