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Burning (2018) Poster

(2018)

Trivia

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The scene in which the main characters talk at Jong-su's house was filmed for about a month. They were only able to shoot for a few minutes every day to capture the twilight on camera.
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The film is based on the short story "Barn Burning" by Haruki Murakami. Japanese broadcaster NHK, which owns the rights to Murakami work, asked Lee Chang-dong to choose and adapt into a film one of short stories by Murakami.
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Paju, the hometown of Jong-su, is famous for its fog. According to cinematographer Kyung-pyo Hong, there were many foggy scenes at dawn, but some were deleted because they came out so beautifully. Many of the scenes where Jong-su runs to search greenhouses at dawn were also deleted because the foggy landscapes were too beautifully shown.
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The loudspeaker broadcast that Jong-su hears at home is actually the sound that can be heard in Paju, which is near the DMZ and the filming location. However, it was difficult to record the actual broadcast, so the sound recorded by a North Korean defector was inserted into the film. The broadcast rang out in Paju during the filming, but it was turned off after the inter-Korean summit in April 2018.
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This film was also inspired by William Faulkner's 1939 story "Barn Burning". Lee described the film as "the story of a young Faulkner living in the Murakami world."
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The bushmen Hae-mi talked about are Saan peoples. They are members of various Khoesan-speaking indigenous hunter-gatherer groups representing the first nation of Southern Africa.
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Official submission of South Korea for the 'Best Foreign Language Film' category of the 91st Academy Awards in 2019.
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The first film directed by Lee Chang-dong in eight years.
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In the press kit for Cannes Film Festival, the film was described as "a dance that seeks the meaning of life" by co-screenwriter Oh Jung Mi.
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Based on / adapted from Murakami's short story 'Barn Burning' (in collection 'The Elephant Vanishes'); the line - in English - used by Hae-mi (Jong-seo jun) of: "Oh, this is nothing. Talent's not involved. It's not a question of making yourself believe there is an orange there, you have to forget there isn't one. That's all." (in the film, it was a mandarin) - is directly from the novel. N.B. In it, Jong-su then responds: "'Practically Zen.' That's when I took a liking to her."
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Working title of the film among screenwriters was "Project Rage".
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The film was sold to more than 100 countries and territories at the Marché du Film in Cannes Film Festival. This include Hong Kong, China, Taiwan, Singapore, the United Kingdom, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Spain, Greece, Poland and Turkey.
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The film premiered at TIFF (Toronto international Film Festival) in Canada in September 2018.
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Dong-won Gang was offered the role of Ben, but he was dropped out as production was delayed. Instead, he filmed Illang: The Wolf Brigade (2018)
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Jeon Jong-seo's debut.
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Spoilers 

The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

There's a lesson in Haemi's pantomime: Once you convince yourself something's there, it's hard to believe that it's not. Jong-su thinks that Ben is a killer.
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According to Lee Chang-Dong, there was something very cinematic about the mysteriousness included in Murakami's story. For Chang-Dong, a small mystery from the short story could be expanded to bigger mysteries in multiple layers in cinematic way. For example, with Chang-Dong's words, "the gaping holes in the chain of events -the missing piece from which we can never know the truth- alludes to the mysterious world we live in now; the world in which we sense that something is wrong but cannot quite put a finger on what the problem is".
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According to screenwriter Oh Jung Mi, there is a quote from the bushmen which she had come across during research and she wanted to put it in the script but was not able to find the right place for it: "All animals and objects in this universe are Great Hunger. The stars in the night sky tremble because they are doing the Dance of the Great Hunger, aware that they would wane and their light die. The early morning dew on leaves are the tears shed by the stars".
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In the scene at Ben's house, Jong-su compares Ben to The Great Gatsby, calling him: "a rich guy and we don't really know what he does". Like Burning, "Gatsby" deals with a love triangle of sorts, including one wealthy, charismatic and mysterious man, the less charismatic narrator who develops an obsession with him, and the woman who is the link between them.
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Hae-mi has pictures from the 1994 film "Man On Fire" in her apartment, they can be seen early on in the film. This could allude to Ben's fate later on in the movie.
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Film debut of actress Jong-seo Jun.
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