WASHINGTON -- Senator Chris Dodd, Chairman and CEO of the Motion Picture Association of America, INC (MPAA) together with Miky Lee, Vice Chairwoman of The CJ Group, one of Korea's leading entertainment and media companies, hosted A Spotlight on Korean Cinema at the MPAA's DC office last night. The event highlighted the increased cultural cooperation between the United States and Korean entertainment communities and featured a special screening of CJ E&M's MASQUERADE. CJ E&M, with an office in Los Angeles, is a subsidiary of The CJ Group and focuses on expanding the opportunities for Asian and Asian-American content in the United States.
Byung-Hun Lee, lead actor in MASQUERADE and Ambassador Young-jin Choi, the South Korean Ambassador to the United States joined Senator Dodd and Vice Chairwoman Lee for this celebration of the two countries' flourishing relationship in the arts.
Senator Dodd, in remarks before the screening, touted the influence of Korean culture in the United States and emphasized the importance of delivering content to audiences in new ways all over the world:
Even as South Korea's pop culture has spread and the desire for more content has continued to grow, the MPA's member companies have worked to deliver more of their content online to the Korean people than ever before. Today, if you turn on any IPTV service in Korea like Qook TV, SK Broadband, or Tving, our content, whether it be feature films or the most popular television series, is available any time a viewer wants it.
Senator Dodd continued:
And men and women in the Korean industry, just like the U.S. industry, are working every day to develop a seamless entertainment experience that allows consumers to watch what they want, when they want, on whatever platform they want to watch it. Without a strong and healthy film industry supporting their work, these talented artists would never have been able to share their images of South Korea with millions of men and women around the world.
Ambassador Choi, who also spoke briefly before the screening, echoed Senator Dodd's emphasis on the important rise of Korean culture:
When MASQUERADE was released, the world experienced an explosion of Korean culture like never before, led by a man in a famous blue suit known as PSY. Byung-Hun Lee, PSY, and many other Korean artists are riding what they call the Korean wave, which includes music, film, dramas, and other forms of popular culture. If 2012 was the year of K-Pop, 2013 is on track to be the year of K-Movies. We have seen more and more Korean films reach an international audience, especially here in the United States.
Finally Tae-sung Jeong, CEO of CJ Entertainment, welcomed guests as the evening's co-hosts and described this particular event's significance to his organization:
The global embrace of Korean film, television, and music has not only resulted in incredible multiplier effects for other industries like tourism...but also increased awareness of Korean culture. CJ Entertainment, lead by Ms. Lee, has been a driving force for creating content to entertain as well as educate by sharing our stories in theaters around the world and in your homes. Co-hosting tonight's first-ever Korean film event with the MPAA and Senator Dodd has been an important symbolic milestone and we look forward to widening our collaboration in the future.