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TIFF Women Directors: Meet Boo Ji-Young – ‘Cart’

TIFF Women Directors: Meet Boo Ji-Young - 'Cart'

Boo Ji-Young attended the Korean Academy of Film Arts. She directed the feature film Sisters on the Road (2009), as well as four shorts: Spark (1997), His Humming (2000), A Drop of Clear Salty Liquid (2002), and A Time to Love (2011, co-directed with Yang Ik-June). (TIFF official site)

Cart, her sophomore feature, played at the Toronto International Film Festival.

WaH: Please give us your description of the film playing.

BJY: Cart tells the story of the temporary workers at a major supermarket who fight against being unfairly laid off by the company. United by courage and strong beliefs, dozens of ordinary women change each others’ lives.

WaH: What drew you to this script?

BJY: The production company, Myung Films, had been working on the film Cart since 2008, and the producer sent me an early draft in 2011. After reading the script, I knew that it was for me, and I wanted to share the story of the power of ordinary people.

WaH: What was the biggest challenge in making the film?

BJY: With full support from the production company, Myung Films, everything went well. But during pre-production, it wasn’t possible to use or rent the department store in which the film was set, so we had to rent a warehouse and eventually build half the set. Moreover, in its early stage, Myung Films had difficulties getting full funding for the film. It seemed that, since most of Korea’s leading enterprises were [financially] involved in both retail and movies, location-scouting and raising funding were not so easy for a film like Cart, which tells the story of the temporary workers at a major supermarket who fight against the unfair actions of a company.

WaH: What do you want people to think about when they are leaving the theatre?

BJY: I hope that it would be a great opportunity for audiences to think about the power of ordinary people. All of the characters in the film are just like our mothers, sisters, and neighbors.

WaH: What advice do you have for other female directors?

BJY: It’s never easy to make a film. Just remember that there are people out there who are waiting for your films, and I support all of you. Frankly speaking, that’s what I’ve always wanted to hear from others.

WaH: What’s the biggest misconception about you and your work?

BJY: Well, generally speaking, a film made by a female director tends to be called “women’s cinema,” whereas, if you think of an action movie featuring a bunch of guys, people don’t call it “men’s cinema.” I hope that, even if a lot of women appear in my film, it won’t be categorized as “women’s cinema.”

WaH: Name your favorite women directed film and why.

BJY: Films by Doris Dorrie and Marleen Gorris. Not only are their stories interesting and lively, but they also convey meaningful messages.   

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