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President Moon meets ‘Parasite’ director, cast at Blue House

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Korean President Moon Jae-in, together with First Lady Kim Jung Sook, welcomed director Bong Joon Ho and the cast and producers of the Oscar-winning film “Parasite” to the Blue House, or presidential residence and office, in Seoul on Feb. 20.

During the meeting, one of the dishes prepared by the first lady for the visitors was jjapaguri, a dish which was mentioned in one of the scenes in “Parasite.” Jjapaguri is a combination of two Korean noodle brands, Chapaghetti and Neoguri, and in the movie, the housekeeper added beef to the dish.

“In addition to the dishes prepared by professional chefs, my wife also made Jjapaguri included in the lunch menu for you guys, including our director Bong. I hope we’ll have a pleasant time together,” said President Moon, according to JTBC Plus.
Also meeting the president and his wife were stars Song Kang Ho, Lee Sun Kyun, Cho Yeo Jeong, Park So Dam, Choi Woo-shik, Lee Jung Eun, Jang Hye Jin and Park Myung Hoon, and Culture, Sports and Tourism Minister Park Yang Woo.

“Parasite” made history by winning the Oscars best picture, the first non-English language film to grab the award, in addition to best international feature Film, best original screenplay and best director.

Korean President Moon Jae-in (5th from right) and First Lady Kim Jung Sook (4th from right) together with director Bong Joon Ho and the cast of 'Parasite' at the Blue House on Feb. 20 (Photo courtesy of Cheong Wa Dae)

Korean President Moon Jae-in (5th from right) and First Lady Kim Jung Sook (4th from right) together with director Bong Joon Ho and the cast of ‘Parasite’ at the Blue House on Feb. 20 (Photo courtesy of Cheong Wa Dae)

“I feel very proud that ‘Parasite’ made new history at the Oscars as well as marking a milestone in the 100-year history of the Korean film industry. The Oscars is the most powerful awards ceremony of the world’s film industry,” Moon told them.

He added that “’Parasite’ is an excellent movie and director Bong is also wonderful. The movie broke down the barriers of non-movie films and made it impossible not to recognize the Best Picture and Best Director titles that ‘Parasite’ earned.”
Moon said the triumph of “Parasite” confirms that Korean culture and the arts are excellent and global. He cited BTS and K-pop, and Korean dramas, which are loved by people in many countries.

“Korean culture has moved from the peripheries to the center of the world and became recognized in all fields of culture. I have such a special pride. I have yet to say that our cultural and artistic industry background is diverse or something like that. The inequality shown in ‘Parasite’ still exists in the entertainment industry. In particular, there is still inequality in the scene of the film-making industry or the system of circulation such as production, distribution, projection, etc.,” he said.

Moon vowed to “do my best to ensure the welfare of the people in the film industry even during the idle time. I will also try my best to accelerate the regulations concerning the total number of screenings to prevent the monopoly in the movie distribution structure. I definitely will provide and increase the support for film academies to help the film industry flourish. I will never interfere with your work.”

Bong praised Moon’s speech, saying “he spoke so fluently because he had the idea about some issues ingrained in his mind.”
“I’ve attended many awards ceremonies, but even the actors who have tried to memorize their speeches still need to look at the teleprompter for a short speech that is just about a quarter of what the President said. As a screenwriter, I was really shocked when seeing the President chose perfect vocabulary, coherent logical flow, and wrapped up the speech orderly,” the director noted.

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