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Ex-justice minister Cho Kuk documentary raises over W50m within three hours on crowdfunding platform

April 26, 2022 - 15:55 By Song Seung-hyun
Screenshot of crowdfunding for “The Red Herring” on Tumblbug (Tumblbug)
“The Red Herring,” a documentary about the embattled ex-Justice Minister Cho Kuk, met its funding goal of 50 million won ($40,000) within three hours on the crowdfunding platform Tumblbug on Monday.

“Funding aims to secure screens at multiplex theaters by proving that there are supporters of ‘The Red Herring,’ so that we can create an opportunity for more people to watch the film at the theater,” production company CK Project said in a statement. “The funding will continue until May 15, with the goal of holding screening events with 100,000 people.”

The production company added it plans to use 30 million won for theater rental, 5 million won for photo books and 15 million won for the production of DVDs of the film.

Crowdfunding for the upcoming movie directed by Yi Seung-jun began at 10 a.m., Monday. As of Tuesday at 1 p.m, the film had raised over 222 million won from 4,379 people.

Yi’s new documentary film depicts what happened to Cho from the day he was appointed as justice minister on Aug. 9, 2019 to his stepping down weeks later on Oct. 14 due to a scandal involving his family.

Yi is known for having directed “In the Absence,” which deals with the Sewol ferry sinking in April 2014. This film became the first-ever Korean documentary to be nominated for an Oscar in 2020, in the shorts category.

Meanwhile, the Jeonju International Film Festival organizer’s decision last week to screen “The Red Herring” immediately sparked controversy.

Although the director has claimed his film does not say whether the “Cho Kuk scandal” is right or wrong, critics argue it is inappropriate to present a film that takes Cho’s side after a court found his wife guilty of forging documents for their daughter’s university application.

“The Red Herring“ will hit local theaters in May.