Busan International Film Festival to Showcase Special Program in Focus: ‘Renaissance of Indonesian Cinema’

Indonesia has recently gained momentum in producing numerous captivating films.

Since the 21st century, Indonesian cinema, particularly in the realm of independent films, has experienced a remarkable resurgence.

These films have found their way to prestigious film festivals, earning acclaim through notable awards.

Today, the domestic market in Indonesia—with its fourth-largest population—is undergoing expansion due to the rise in screen numbers, especially in multiplexes, with local productions having captured the majority of the market share.

Furthermore, as one of the countries with its film industry that made the fastest recovery from the pandemic, Indonesia is bolstering its cultural policies to nurture the film industry’s growth and foster emerging Indonesian filmmakers.

Focusing on Indonesia’s fast-growing film industry, the Special Program in Focus will introduce 7 features and 5 short films, including series which will be presented on Netflix. Mouly Surya and Kamila Andini, two of the most prominent female directors in Asia; Joko Anwar, hailed as a preeminent master of the horror genre; along with Edwin and Yosep Anggi Noen, who have received acclaim at world-renowned film festivals, are once again returning to Busan in October. The spotlight will also be cast upon budding filmmakers who have recently started to capture attention.

Selections Full of Characters with Compelling Personalities
Celebrated Indonesian Filmmakers and Actors Visit BIFF 2023!

Yosep Anggi NOEN — 24 Hours with Gaspar (2023)

24 Hours with Gaspar (2023) by Yosep Anggi Noen, a film depicting rough characters living on the edgy streets, will have its world premiere. This film, envisioning the emergence of a novel genre infused with science fiction elements into a life of deceitfulness, was chosen as a selection for the 2022 Asian Project Market.

Kamila ANDINI, Ifa ISFANSYAH — Cigarette Girl (2023

Cigarette Girl (2023), which has garnered significant attention due to the couple Kamila Andini and Ifa Isfansyah, delves into the life of a female protagonist entwined with the 1960s Indonesian cigarette industry. Each character exudes a captivating allure—veiled in a shroud of enigmatic secrecy—weaving an engaging narrative tapestry. This year’s BIFF will present the world premiere of the first two episodes, among the series of five episodes.

BW Purba NEGARA — Tales of The Otherwords (2016)

The program highlights Tales of the Otherwords (2016), centered on a 95-year-old grandmother who has lived through tumultuous eras spanning from Dutch and Japanese imperialism to independence and a coup d’état, and Posesif (2017), directed by Edwin, which presents the coming-of-age story of a teenage boy and girl, characterized by its refreshing yet profound perspective.

Ismail BASBETH — Sara (2022)

Mouly SURYA —What They Don′t Talk About When They Talk About Love (2012)

Joko ANWAR — Impetigore (2019)

The selection also includes Sara (2022) by Ismail Basbeth, which navigates the conflicts faced by a transgender woman within her family and community, and What They Don’t Talk About When They Talk About Love (2012) by Mouly Surya, exploring the friendship and personal development of two blind girls. Impetigore (2019) by Joko Anwar, heralded by aficionados of horror cinema as one of the scariest films of its release year, also finds its place within the selection. Beyond these works, 5 short films by talented directors embarking on their first feature film projects will be introduced.

Khozy RIZAL — Basri & Salma in a Never-Ending Comedy (2023)

M. Reza FAHRIYANSYA —Dancing Colors (2022)

Tumpal TAMPUBOLON — The Sea Calls For Me (2021)

Bayu Prihantoro FILEMON — Vania on Lima Street (2022)

Nirartha Bas DIWANGKARA — Where the Wild Frangipanis Grow (2023)

‘Renaissance of Indonesian Cinema’, a Special Program in Focus featuring captivating characters in a variety of genres, has secured significant backing from the Ministry of Education, Culture, Research, and Technology of Indonesia, resulting in a substantial expansion of its guest invitations. Directors and actors from each featured film are scheduled to visit Busan, taking part in a multitude of events, including Guest Visits (GV), where they will enthusiastically share their profound experiences with the audience.

The 28th Busan International Film Festival, which has unveiled its Special Program in Focus, will be held for 10 days from Oct 4 (Wed) to Oct 13 (Fri) in the vicinity of the Busan Cinema Center.

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