press enter to search

Bong Joon-ho's 20-year film director career

Park Yuna

The Korea Herald/Asia News Network

 /  Mon, January 6, 2020  /  05:17 pm
Bong Joon-ho's 20-year film director career

South Korean film director Bong Joon-ho poses in the press room with the award for Best Motion Picture - Foreign Language during the 77th annual Golden Globe Awards on January 5, 2020, at The Beverly Hilton hotel in Beverly Hills, California. (AFP/Frederic J. Brown)

Born in Daegu in 1969, Bong Joon-ho is believed to have inherited artistic sensibilities from his family. His father was a pioneering graphic designer and his maternal grandfather the well-known novelist Park Tae-won, who wrote such masterpieces as A Day in the Life of Kubo the Novelist. By the time he was 15 years old, Bong knew he wanted to be a filmmaker. 

Bong graduated from Yonsei University, having majored in sociology. During his college years, Bong made his first short film, White Collar. After graduating Yonsei, he went on to the Korean Academy of Film Arts to study filmmaking in earnest. While at the academy, Bong shot films such as IncoherenceThe Memories in My Frame and Motel Cactus.

The director also wrote the scripts for all of his seven feature films. As a movie director, he challenged conventions by releasing the movie Okja through streaming service Netflix in 2017.

Read also: 'Parasite', South Korean comedy about class rage, wins Cannes gold

Winning streak

2000 -- First feature film Barking Dogs Never Bite released. The film wins the High Hopes Award for best newcomer at 19th Munich Film Fest in 2001.

2003 -- Memories of Murder, based on a real story of a serial murder spree that took place from 1986-1991.

2006 -- The Host, starring Song Kang-ho and Bae Doo-na, becomes the fourth Korean film to hit 10 million tickets sold.

2009 -- Suspense thriller Mother scores big on the international film festival circuit despite its lackluster performance at the local box office. It wins best film at the Asian Film Awards in Hong Kong in 2010.

2013 - Bong’s first English-language film Snowpiercer is released. Starring Tilda Swinton, the film is a biting critique of the class system, a recurring theme from Bong.

2017 - Okja premieres at the 2017 Cannes Film Festival, where it competes for the Palme d’Or.

2019 - Parasite wins the Palme d’Or at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival.

2020 - Parasite wins for best foreign language film at the 77th Golden Globe Awards, becoming the first Korean film to win a major Hollywood award.

Your premium period will expire in 0 day(s)

close x
Subscribe to get unlimited access Get 50% off now
This article appeared on The Korea Herald newspaper website, which is a member of Asia News Network and a media partner of The Jakarta Post