Director Biography – MJ KIM (JUICY GIRL)

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MJ Kim is an internationally renowned photographer who has worked with some of the biggest names such as Johnny Depp, Ed Sheeran, Paul McCartney and many more.

MJ has been working for Sir Paul since 2008 as his personal photographer and finally pursued his childhood dream of being a filmmaker through ‘Juicy Girl’.

Through ‘Juicy Girl’, MJ hoped to shed light on the dark side of the US military presence in South Korea post Korean War and tell the story of the horror and violence many young women fell victim to and continues to endure to this day.

Short Film: JUICY GIRL, 15min., USA, Crime/Drama

 

1da2c9edaa poster‘Juicy Girl’ is based on events surrounding the murders of several of the many Korean women committed by US Army personnel since the Korean War of the 1950’s.

1992 South Korea. Soyoung, also known as Annie, is a Juicy Girl. A term used by American soldiers stationed in South Korea for local prostitutes. Soyoung is a trafficking victim, snatched by a gang when in her teens and forced into sex slavery. Sold to a pimp who operates his girls out of a nightclub, exclusively reserved for US Army personnel, Soyoung serves their ‘needs’. Her world is confined and tightly controlled, there is no escape. Soyoung’s only rare moments of joy come when she befriends a young street seller, Hoon a 10 year old boy.

Private Michael Johnstone, a US Army Medic, is a loner and shunned by the other G.I.’s. A narcissist and a misogynist, Johnstone is a psychotic landmine waiting to explode. At the nightclub Soyoung is in his sights, seemingly easy prey he can dominate and humiliate. Choosing his time carefully Johnstone, a master manipulator, romances and finally picks up Soyoung. Except Soyoung doesn’t play by his rules, nor is willing to do as she is told to by Johnstone. Johnstone erupts in a frenzy of brutal and grotesque violence. Leaving her dead and disfigured Johnstone feels no remorse.

Johnstone is arrested for Soyoung’s murder. Under interrogation he denies killing her though all the evidence confirms this. Johnstone is sentenced to life imprisonment. Some years later this sentence comes under review for possible parole. An experienced psychologist, Jane Owens, is brought in to assess Johnstone’s mental state. Owens gains a terrifying insight to Johnstone’s mind. To Johnstone, Annie was a nobody and got what she deserved. She was inferior, an irritating nuisance – just a Juicy Girl. Owens’ firm conclusion is that Johnstone must never be given an early release. He is a danger to society and likely to commit again. But justice can be bought. Soyoung had no protectors. Johnstone has one of the most powerful on earth, The US Army, who want to bring one of their boys back home. The Army coerces Soyoung’s family into accepting compensation for her death, blood money. They have no choice but to accept.

Private Michael Johnstone is released early. A free man.

This leads to outrage from the local populace, for the crime should not have allowed early parole.

News & Reviews

Short Film: JANUARY 14TH, 15min., USA, Drama/Crime

A2fb7ab3b4 posterA young couple’s anniversary takes a bittersweet turn when a police officer pulls the husband over on a questionable traffic stop. Inspired by true events. Winner of Best Short and Best Director by the Top Film Indie Awards and nominated for Best Writer by the Queen Palm International Film Festival.

News & Reviews

1st Scene SHORT Screenplay Reading: Time Museum, by Gahee Lee

LUNA desperately tries to reroute her fate, and she does, it’s an action she’ll immediately regret.

CAST LIST:

Narrator: Allison Kampf
WOMAN/GIRL/LUNA (F): Hannah Ehman
MAN/TOM (M): Allan Michael Brunet

Producer/Director: Matthew Toffolo http://www.matthewtoffolo.com

Festival Moderators: Matthew Toffolo, Rachel Elder

Casting Director: Sean Ballantyne

Editors: Kimberly Villarruel

Festival Directors: Rachel Elder, Natasha Levy

Camera Operators: Ryan Haines, Temitope Akinterinwa, Efren Zapata, Zack Arch

Play Short Film, Audience FEEDBACK from July 2020 DRAMA Festival

PLAY, 13min., Poland, Drama

Directed by Piotr Sulkowski

A man consumed by guilt because he did not dare to defend his mother, plays the role of a murderer and forces his ten-year-old self to face his original trauma…

Weep Not Short Film, Audience FEEDBACK from July 2020 DRAMA Festival

WEEP NOT, 13min., USA, Drama

Directed by Lenore Thomas Douglas

Journey Gordean, a successful journalist gets to cover a story of a lifetime, but her ambition is tested when that very assignment is the man who assaulted her when they were children.

HIGHLIGHTS, WINNERS & VIDEOS: July 2020 DRAMA FEEDBACK Film Festival

AUDIENCE AWARD WINNERS:
BEST FILM: TERRA BEACH
BEST CINEMATOGRAPHY: SPIRIT: A MARTIAN STORY
BEST PERFORMANCESS: WEEP NOT
BEST SOUND & MUSIC: PLAY

Theme of night: Coming to terms.

NOTE: Festival took place during the COVID-19 virus lockdown so all screenings were held in private.

Watch the Audience FEEDBACK Videos:

festival posterPLAY, 13min., Poland, Drama

festival posterOKAY, 3min., USA, Drama

festival posterWEEP NOT, 13min., USA, Drama

festival posterSPIRIT: A MARTIAN STORY, 10min, USA, Drama/Fantasy

festival posterTERRA BEACH, 20min, Canada, Sci-Fi/Drama

festival posterBLACK STAINS, 14min, USA, Experimental/Dance

festival posterWHEN EARTH TOOK A BREATH, 5min., USA, Music

festival posterMONOH – With Attitude, 4min., Germany, Music

festival posterSTRUT – 1980s, 5min., Australia, Music

festival posterAMERICAN QUARTET, 9min., USA, Music

festival posterAgoria – Call of the Wild, 5min., France, Music

festival posterSEARCHING FOR WONDER, 6min., USA, Music

festival posterUNDER THE WATERFALL – THE AVENGER, 3min., France, Music

The beginning of a (temporary) new era.

See you at the festivals. Whenever that happens!

– Matthew Toffolo

Director Biography – Mike Gallant (TERRA BEACH)

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Director Mike Gallant grew up in Cambridge, Ontario, Canada, and moved to Toronto, Ontario, at the age of 17 to attend film school. In 2015, he took a crew of his friends and colleagues to Cancun, Mexico, where he shot his first feature “The Duchess of Cancun.” After making his mark as a professional editor and videographer and writing/directing many award-winning shorts, this film is his directorial debut. Mike has now become a full-time feature film editor in Canada, working on projects like “Clash”, “I’ll Take Your Dead” which stars Aidan Devin (Suicide Squad), “Don’t Click”, “Still The Water”, “The Oak Room” which stars RJ Mitte (Breaking Bad), “Purple Don’t Cry”, and the HBO Max film, “Vicious Fun” which stars David Koechner (Anchorman). His main goal is to direct/write a feature film for a major production company.

Director Statement

I chose to make this film, “Terra Beach”, because my wife of Mexican decent endured incredible hardships at a young age to find a better life in both the U.S. and Canada. One of the main characters, “Dominica”, has similar experiences when she and her sister are attacked in a hate crime on a space station in 2069. Mitch, the main character and a stranger to Dominica, witnesses the hate crime and offers to help track down Dominica’s attackers. Fortunately, my wife has not been the subject of such abuse, but knows things like this do happen to people around her. My relationship with my wife heavily informs the bond created between Mitch and Dominica. I also worked hard to keep “Terra Beach” both a-political and morally murky – hoping the results are stronger for it. Noel G (Training Day, The Fast and The Furious) brought an incredible nuance to his performance and beautifully portrayed a good father who wants to do a bad thing. This was a labour of love and the most rewarding project I have ever been a part of.