In 2018, a decade after MUNYURANGABO, his first feature film debuted as an Official Selection at Cannes, Lee Isaac Chung was close to trading in the unpredictable life of an independent filmmaker for a more stable career as a film professor. Yet, before he put the camera and clapboard into storage, he felt he had one last script to write. This famously became MINARI, a coming-of-age story inspired by Chung’s experiences growing up the son of Korean-American immigrants in rural Arkansas during the 1980s. The film and its performances drew great acclaim at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, where it won both the grand jury and audience awards, as well as six Oscar® nominations including best picture, director, original screenplay, score and acting nods for Steven Yeun, and for Yuh-Jung Youn, who’d go on top capture the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. It also marked the first time in the Oscars 92-year history that South Korean performers were nominated for acting awards.
On November 23, Film Movement celebrates the career of this visionary director with THE EARLY FILMS OF LEE ISAAC CHUNG. The slipcased DVD collection showcases a trio of compelling dramas, including his feature film debut, MUNYURANGABO, an Un Certain Regard Official Selection at Cannes and winner of the Grand Jury Award at AFI Fest.
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