Leading art-house film director, Kim Ki-duk is expected to be fined in a case of assault against an actress.
The Seoul Central District Prosecutors’ Office said on Thursday that it has indicted Kim on a summary offense with a penalty of $4,570 (KRW5 million), according to the Yonhap news agency.
The incident occurred in 2013 during the filming of Kim’s award-winning film “Moebius.” The actress, whose identity has been withheld, claims that Kim slapped her in the face while shooting the movie and forced her to take part in an unscripted, violent sex scene. She withdrew from the production and was replaced by Lee Eun-woo.
Kim acknowledged the incident in August, but denied assault. “On our first day on set, we were shooting the film’s very first scene where the husband and the wife were having a fierce fight, beating each other. I would have either slapped the actress from her partner’s subjective POV, as I was filming the scene myself, or I would have slapped my own face, showing her how far I wanted her to go,” said Kim in a statement released by A Kim Ki-duk Film, his production company. “In either case, I had nothing personal against the actress.”
Kim (“The Isle,” “3-Iron,” “Pieta”) is one of Korea’s most decorated film makers, having won major prizes at Cannes, Berlin and Venice. But throughout his career he has remained controversial and independent of the mainstream Korean industry. Many of his films have been intensely disturbing or violent. Others have been accused of misogyny.
Of his upcoming film, “Human, Space, Time and Human,” a tale that tests and reveals the true nature of the human race, Kim said: “I made this film in order to stop hating humans.”
He was this week part of the jury that decided the new best Asian film prize at Australia’s AACTA Awards. Next week he is expected to be among the jury members involved in the Asian Brilliant Stars, a Chinese-backed awards show that debuted this year in Berlin.