Hey, so remember that supposed government blacklist of about 10,000 celebs/artists they started investigating at the end of 2016? Well, less than a week ago the prosecutor made a pair of arrests in the case.
On January 21st a special prosecutor investigating the wider scandal arrested [former chief of staff Kim Ki Choon] and the current culture minister, Cho Yoon-sun, on suspicion of abusing their power by enforcing the blacklist. A version of the list from 2015 is said to include some of the country’s most famous film directors as well as Han Kang, whose latest novel won last year’s Man Booker International Prize. The prosecutor says he has obtained part of the list and enough evidence to implicate Ms Park’s office.
Rumours of a modern-day blacklist had been circulating for a while. In 2015 the government stopped support for cinemas screening independent films, giving the money instead to those showing movies recommended by a state-financed film council. Prosecutors say recent patriotic blockbusters by CJ, a food and entertainment conglomerate, were produced under state pressure. Funding for the annual Busan Film Festival was halved after it premiered a controversial documentary on the Sewol in 2014.
A late aide to Ms Park wrote that Mr Kim had ordered “an aggressive response to schemes by leftists in the arts”.
Alrighty, so the blacklist might’ve been an actual thing that might’ve actually been enforced. More than the blacklist, it seems the government was basically funding propaganda movies.
So yeah, things going great.