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Lotte, Busan City Launch $17.3 Million Film Fund

Lotte Entertainment, one of South Korea’s largest movie companies, has teamed with the city of Busan to launch the $17.3 million (KRW 21 billion) Busan-Lotte Creative Film Fund.

The fund, unveiled on Thursday, is part of the ‘Creative Economy Action Plan’ by president of Korea Park Geun-hye. Lotte currently backs the Busan Center for Creative Economy and Innovation for film business.

Lotte is providing KRW 10 billion, while the city, Busan Bank and Timewise Investment are injecting KRW 6 billion, KRW 4 billion and KRW 1 billion respectively. Timewise will be the fund’s asset manager, while Lotte and the city will be the fund’s limited partners. Timewise, formerly CJ Venture Investment, part of CJ E&M, has invested in films including blockbusters “The Thieves” and “Roaring Currents,” as well as Lee Joon-ik’s recent “Dongju: The Portrait of A Poet.”

Half of the fund will be invested in commercial Korean film productions, while the other half will be dedicated to low-budget indie movies or “Busan Projects,” which are produced or post-produced by Busan-based companies. Also, films that use Busan for more than 20% of their locations are eligible to apply.

Fund contributions are capped at 20% of total production budget for the commercial movies, and at 50% for low-budget movies costing less than $410,000 (KRW 500 million.) The fund will last for six years, and will make investments in the first five.

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