Yuri Jang was born in South Korea. She studied traditional 2D animation and graduated with a BFA from Kyoto-Seika University in Japan. She graduated in Animation and Digital Arts MFA at the University of Southern California with the film “Thread” that examines the plight of comfort women in Korea. Currently, she is working as a freelancing artist in South Korea. She enjoys creating illustrations that provide a glimpse into the character’s personal story.
Within the framework of this year’s 16 DAYS 16 FILMS initiative created by Modern Films and the Kering Foundation, a short film competition that platforms female filmmakers and their films, which explore, emote, and educate on forms of violence against women, Tara Karajica talks to Yuri Jang about her short film, “Thread,” as well as her thoughts on the short form, women in film today and what she is up to next.
How did you get into filmmaking and what inspires you to make films?
Yuri Jang: Back then, I did not know what I wanted to do, but I only wanted to paint. I decided to study Animation after watching the animated film Paprika by Satoshi Kon. I was amazed by the dream sequences in his film.
Can you talk about your short film Thread?
Y.J.: Thread is 2D animated documentary film about a “comfort woman” who was forced to become a sexual slave during WWII by Japan.
How do you see the short form today?
Y.J.: I personally watch animated short films a lot more than live action films. Animated short films always inspire me or others with unique ideas, directing and styles.
What is your opinion on the situation of women in film today?
Y.J.: I don’t know much about the film industry since I have a lack of experience there. But I could easily figure there are more male directors than female directors. I don’t say it’s bad, but it makes me think why it’s not easy to meet female directors. Would I be challenged by others because I am a woman? I appreciate that women are making the culture of supporting each other.
Who is your favorite female filmmaker and what is your favorite film by a female filmmaker?
Y.J.: I love Jeong Dahee and her film The Empty. She expresses the humans being and losing as time flows.
What are your next projects?
Y.J.: I’m still figuring out my next project. I want to make something that matters to society. It’s too ambiguous, but I always want to talk about minorities and their stories. They could be women, children, people of color or elderly people.
This interview was conducted within the framework of the 2020 16 DAYS 16 FILMS initiative created by the Kering Foundation and Modern Films.