Academic journal article CineAction

East Asian Cinemas

Academic journal article CineAction

East Asian Cinemas

Article excerpt

It is a sign of the times when a call for papers on Asian Cinemas produces an avalanche of proposals from a multitude of countries. In comparison, a few years ago, when I did an issue of CineAction on Chinese Films (#42), the response had been quite modest. Since then, the West's exposure to and interest in cinemas from the east has apparently grown exponentially. This naive editor quickly learned the necessity to differentiate between East Asian filmmaking and films from ROA (the rest of Asia). Mea culpa when I had to turn down an otherwise intriguing paper about films from Kazakhstan, as well as articles on the more well-known South Asian films. Even with the narrower definition of East Asian films, I was compelled by the strict format of a 72 page magazine with photo illustrations (but no ads) to spread out the acceptances across four national cinemas with a long history of filmmaking and distribution in the West (Hong Kong, mainland China, Taiwan and Japan) and a comparatively new one from South Korea who se films have become more easily available over the past decade (e.g. Toronto's 2002 International Film Festival's national spotlight focused on films from South Korea). Oddly enough, no papers were submitted about films from Thailand, another area of recent cinematic interest.

My intention was to provide a variety of approaches to cinema studies, and as a result I have included papers on the history of film, analyses of specific films from personal, political and social perspectives, and interviews with 2 important directors, Jia Zhangke (Platform, Unknown Pleasures) and Hirokazu Kore-eda (Maborosi, After Life). …

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