Bong Joon Ho Couldn’t See ‘Apocalypse Now’ Until South Korea Lifted Ban, Credits Film as Inspiration

  • Indiewire
Bong Joon Ho Couldn’t See ‘Apocalypse Now’ Until South Korea Lifted Ban, Credits Film as Inspiration
Francis Ford Coppola’s ambitious and notoriously troubled anti-Vietnam masterpiece “Apocalypse Now,” released in 1979, no doubt remains a defining moment for both cinephiles and audiences. At the ongoing Lumière Festival in Lyon, France, South Korean director Bong Joon Ho — who currently has a masterpiece of his own on his hands with the now-in-theaters “Parasite” — gushed over the film while onstage to honor Coppola with the festival’s lifetime achievement award.

At the French film festival, which presents restorations and retrospectives of classic films, Bong was joined by a crew of top talent including actress Nathalie Baye and Coppola’s son Roman. Also participating in the tribute to Coppola were famed Cannes Film Festival director Thierry Frémaux and filmmaker Bertrand Tavernier. Bong said that he was unable to see “Apocalypse Now” until 1988, nearly a decade after the film’s release, because it was banned in his native country.

“You actually represent my highest goal,
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