25th BIFAN's 'Beyond Reality' Exhibition Ends in Success
More than 80 projects presented through Beyond Reality accompanied with
Baobob Studios Spotlight and XR3 Collaborative Exhibition
Participants call the exhibition “Beautiful and intense”
and “Amazing and moving”
On July 18, the 25th Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival's (BIFAN, Festival Director SHIN Chul) XR program, Beyond Reality, wrapped up its experiential exhibition. A total of 3,067 guests attended. The exhibition, which was held from July 1 to 18 at the Incheon International Airport, was held safely by strictly adhering to disease prevention guidelines and reducing the permitted number of guests after the Level 4 social distancing scheme was imposed on July 12.
This year's Beyond Reality exhibition received a slew of rave reviews from participants. Some of the reviews left by participants who booked tickets through Naver include: “It was beautiful and intense. It's difficult to put into words.” (ditk******), “I liked how it felt like I was the star of a Disney film.” (gjt****), “Make sure you check it out! It'll be a new experience.” (esoh****), “It was amazing and beautiful. It was a moving experience.” (ditk******), “It was like a fairy tale for adults." (hero*****), “The story was really interesting, and all the motions that could be done made it fun. I strongly recommend it!!” (fe****) "It was worth traveling the long distance to come here!” (doon***), “The layout made it easy to concentrate on the works, and I was able to appreciate them.” (jen*******).
“This year's Beyond Reality was filled with programs that offered diverse insights into visual storytelling," said BIFAN festival director SHIN Chul. “We thank the agencies that helped us to adhere to disease prevention guidelines and hold a safe exhibition, as well as the participants who visited the Beyond Reality exhibition."
Launched in 2016 as the first of its kind in the country, Beyond Reality is a program that BIFAN takes great pride in. This year's featured sections included the Baobab Studios Spotlight, the XR3 collaboration exhibition, a screening of the winners of the BIFAN x Unity Short Film Challenge, and the screening of immersive content produced by the Korea Cultural Heritage Foundation. All told, over 80 pieces of content were presented.
There were 39 official selections this year. Tearless by director Gina KIM, who has received international recognition for her work, and Red Eyes by LEE Sng-moo were the top Korean XR content featured. As a part of the Baobab Studios Spotlight, 5 works from one of the world's leading interactive animation studios were presented. These works included: Bonfire, which won an award at the Sandbox Immersive Festival for its seamless integration of narrative and interactive elements; Namoo, the latest work by Erick OH, who received a nomination for the animated short film category of the Academy Awards; Baba Yaga, which made its debut at last year's Venice Film Festival; Paper Birds, and The Crow.
One of Beyond Reality's representative programs for this year was the XR3 exhibition, done in collaboration with Cannes XR and the NewImages Festival. BIFAN and the Incheon International Airport Corporation joined forces to bring the XR3 exhibition to the country. The exhibition, which was open at the same time around the world, was introduced to Korean viewers through BIFAN. A total of 30 works were invited to XR3 and were exhibited on the virtual platform, MOR (Museum of Other Realities). MOR not only allows for the screening of XR content, but it also makes it possible for participants to experience actual film festival activities, such as events, parties, and networking opportunities.
“Through the response we received from the participants of this year's Beyond Reality exhibition, I realized that the interest in VR content has gone up, and I was also able to see that the global status of Beyond Reality has gone up as well," revealed BIFAN XR programmer Jay KIM. He added, “We are putting plans in place to become a springboard for the next generation of creators. We hope everyone continues to look forward to the future of Beyond Reality."
The 25th BIFAN, which was held online and offline this year, opened on the 8th and came to a close on the 18th. Offline screenings at theaters took place until the 15th, while online screenings went on until the 18th via the OTT platform, wavve. The Beyond Reality exhibition ran from July 1 to 18. In 2022, BIFAN will be coming back with a richer, more diverse program, and will be ready to greet audiences once again as a more improved festival.