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Butterfly Sleep,” which plays in Busan’s prestigious Gala Presentation section,  is the director’s first fiction feature film in 13 years since 2004’s “The Aggressives.”
“Melodramas are not in demand in the current film market. But I love melodramas and wanted to make a very sad, yet beautiful one,” said Jung at the Busan press conference for the film. “Since I was a kid, I have read many Japanese novels and watched Japanese films. In ‘Butterfly’ I tried to convey the sentiments from that experience.”
Entirely shot in Japan, the romance stars Korean actor Kim Jae-uk alongside Japanese actress Nakayama Miho, who is revered for her performance in Iwai Shunji’s 1995 drama “Love Letter.”
“Once I had decided to shoot in Japan, I had no one but Nakayama in mind. I wanted to revive her image as the iconic heroine of ‘Love Letter,’” she explained.

“I had to deliver my direction through my interpreter, which made me speak less. In the end, it helped us finish shooting ahead of our planned date. Working overseas with foreign staff was more of a benefit (than a disadvantage) for me,” she said.

International sales are being handled by South Korea’s M-line Distribution.