New Delhi, Apr 18 (PTI) 'Minari' director Lee Isaac Chung says it was hard not to get lost in his emotions while directing certain scenes in the movie, which inspired by his memories as the child of immigrant parents.
One scene that was particularly challenging for the director to shoot involved veteran South Korean star Youn Yuh-Jung's grandmother comforting Alan Kim's David at night by tapping on his shoulders.
The director, whose parents shifted to the US from South Korea, lived briefly in Atlanta before moving to a small farm in Arkansas, depicts the journey of the Korean immigrants, who move from California to rural Arkansas, where the father hopes to grow Korean produce while raising his family.
'When I was directing some scenes, I was just trying to focus and trying to do a professional job and not trying to get lost in my emotions while I was filming,' the director said in a Zoom group interview with international journalists.
According to Isaac Chung, the fact that the story came from a personal space made it challenging for him to shoot certain scenes.
'With that said, the scene with grandmother comforting David at night, that was a particular challenge for me that day. I remember that one was really hard to get through,' he said, crediting cinematographer Lachlan Milne and other team members for helping him get through the scene.
'That scene never happened in my life, but I just felt when I was watching the grandmother tapping the boy's shoulders, something about that just did it for me. And I felt like she was doing that to me like my grandmother was doing that to me and I just got lost in that.' The director said moments when the family's sleeping on the floor together also stands out as something that creates a lot of feelings for him though it did not happen to him either.
'Somehow, it's with some of the scenes that never really happened in my life but capture a deeper spiritual truth of what I desire or what I wish, or what I feel is true to my family, those were the ones that surprised me the most because it felt like I was experiencing something new for the first time that was a memory at the same time, even though it never happened. And that was always remarkable when that would happen in this film,' he recalled.
'Minari', starring Steven Yeun, Han Ye-ri, Alan Kim, Noel Kate Cho, Youn Yuh-Jung, and Will Patton, released in India by PVR Pictures on April 16.
The 1980s-set drama is one of the most loved films this award season and is up for six Academy awards, including the best picture, best director for Isaac Chung, best original score, best actor for Yeun, and best supporting actress for Youn. PTI BK BK BK