Jung Jae-il x Jayro Bustamante
Ever since he was a little boy Jung Jae-il, born in Seoul on May 7, 1982, has been obsessed with music. He plays piano and guitar, but in his hands even a saw becomes a musical instrument.
As a teenager he was a fan of the British heavy metal band Carcass and he is still a fan of Metallica. He has praised their music as his main influence. Jung studied at the Jazz Academy in Seoul and at the age of 15 he composed the music for Bad Movie, a film he wasn’t even allowed to see considering his age. Jung Jae-Il was a member of several rock bands and wrote music for film, television and musicals. He is familiar with the Korean musical language as well as with a more universal musical idiom.
His international breakthrough was his music for Bong Joon-Ho’s Parasite. Jung Jae-Il met Bong Joon-Ho when he produced Sea Fog in 2014. Bong Joon-ho called on Jung during the shooting of his film Okja for Netflix. When composing Jung makes sure that his music contrasts with what is visible on screen. Seldom a score has been more popular worldwide than Jung’s soundtrack for the Netflix series Squid Game, where his personal style fuses seamlessly with classical music. The soundtrack of the series is connected to the characters and thus contains a powerful social message. Jung’s latest score is Broker by Hirokazu Kore-eda.
Watching videos on a TV screen in a primitive film club as a 12-year-old in a tourist town was enough for Jayro Bustamante, born on 7 May 1977 in Guatemala City, to be bitten by the film bug. After studying communications and advertising work, he went to Paris to study film direction and to Rome to learn screenwriting. Prompted in part by his mother, he then returned to Guatemala because he could shoot more relevant films there than in France. Together with his mother, he set up his own production company to give a voice to Guatemalan stories.
The first of these stories, Ixcanul, is about a young woman who dreams of life on the other side of a volcano. In Temblores, he shows the struggle of a man caught between his sexuality and religion. In La Llorona, a war criminal faces the ghosts of the past. Together, these titles form a kind of triptych in which Bustamante stands up for the oppressed in society. In doing so, he mainly highlights the indigenous population and vehemently denounces the genocide of the Maya in the 1980s. Hence, his films are deliberately not mere entertainment. Besides numerous other festival awards, Ixcanul won not only the Best Film prize in Ghent in 2015 but also the Explore Award from the youth jury. The director was also part of the international jury of Film Fest Gent in 2019.