Expat film fest to return after year hiatus

By Paul Kerry
  • Published : Jan 18, 2018 - 11:10
  • Updated : Jan 18, 2018 - 11:10
The Korea International Expat Film Festival is inviting entries for its run in September, returning after a year away.

The organizers have tried to keep the cost of entry down this year, choosing to seek sponsorship to reduce the festival’s reliance on fees.

Now filmmakers have two options, either entering at the usual price, with the complete level of feedback offered before, or at a lower price without a detailed review.

The feedback was set up as a selling point of KIXFF, inspired by founder Kevin Lambert’s experience of getting no explanation for a film’s acceptance or rejection at other festivals. He said that many festivals are better at informing entrants, and adds they will still give a basic assessment.

“Our first pass on films is usually number scores based on initial viewings, things like the overall impression of the film, pacing, acting, sound,” he said. 
French filmmaker Yann Kerloch discusses his work at the Korea International Expat Film Festival at Emu Art Space in Seoul in September 2016. (KIXFF)

“So filmmakers can still get those scores back so they can see how the judges saw their film and what they thought of it (with regular application fees), but if they want more elaborate comments such as judges’ suggestions and opinions, that would be for the upgraded option.”

Other than that, Lambert said the categories were largely the same as before -- with feature-length and short sections in expat, Korean and ultra-low budget categories.

“We just changed them a bit, so we are now allowing experimental films in the music video category, because we had some overlap in previous years and then also we changed the name of the Korean category to allow a wider reach of Korean films,” he said.

As with previous years, the festival will run film events to promote the festival, including an Academy Awards party where guests dress up for Oscars night on March 3, with food and fun events.

“We added one last year, KIX48, and that went pretty well,” said Lambert, referring to a competition where entrants made a film from scratch in just 48 hours. This year, he plans to run it in June or July, with the winning film screened as part of the festival.

Regular film entries are open until June 15, but there are several earlier deadlines before which entry is cheaper. The earliest is Feb. 1. For more information on the festival and how to enter, visit, or check the festival’s Facebook page for updates.