7-10 OCTOBER 2023
Asian Project Market

2023 Project

Friends of This Life Director KIM Mi-young Country/Region Korea
  • Producer Jenny YANG
  • Production Company Bori & Odi Film
  • Writer KIM Mi-young
  • Shooting Format 4K  |  color  |  110min
  • Genre Drama
  • Project Status Script Development, Financing
  • Goals at APM Financing, Co-production
  • Total Budget USD 780,000
  • Financing in Place USD 40,000


Yujin tries to be a necessary presence for her depressed and ill mother. Dongwoo loves her but cannot understand her choice. The two of them strive to find freedom from their families and from each other.


Yujin, a 19-year-old living in the United States with her father, decides to return to Korea to support her depressed mother, Seonjeong. As a high school teacher, Seonjeong feels responsible for her daughter′s return and decides to go back to work. While on a bus, Yujin comes to the rescue of Dongwoo, who accidentally falls from a bridge. Dongwoo, who had grown cynical due to his underprivileged circumstance, finds himself falling in love with Yujin, and struggles to overcome his self-consciousness about his poverty.
Seven years later in Seoul, Dongwoo now works at a small publishing company and pursues his passion for writing. Meanwhile, Yujin works at a store with a close friend and enjoys playing in a band. However, when Seonjeong is diagnosed with cancer, Yujin makes the decision to be by her mother′s side. Dongwoo questions Yujin about her inclination to run away from her own life, but unfortunately, she leaves.
Four years later, Dongwoo is chosen as a local resident writer and returns to the small town. He reconnects with old friends and learns about Yujin′s story of the past four years. In a writing class led by Dongwoo, Yujin, who has lived after her mother′s death, appears. Yujin shares a four-line biography about her mother and herself. As Dongwoo bears witness to Yujin′s acceptance of the world, he is inspired to write a biography that reflects on the collective experiences and challenges of everyone′s lives.

Director's Statement

As we enter adulthood and journey through life′s ups and downs, this self-reflective exploration leads us to question our own identities and the forces that shape us. Here, we meet a mother burdened by a sense of unfulfillment, contemplating giving up on life. However, her daughter remains resolute in her determination to protect her. Alongside, there is the daughter′s boyfriend, burdened by a belief in his misfortune. Together, they embark on a quest to discover the true essence of living authentically. By navigating their origins and the ever-changing currents of time, they learn what truly deserves to be protected. This film yearns for characters who can provide solace in moments of self-doubt and inner conflict, resonating deeply with viewers.

Producer's Statement

Friends of This Life delves into the complexity of human existence by following the lives of young adults in their twenties who dare to dream and take unconventional paths challenging societal norms. We also witness the journey of an intellectual woman who has navigated the roles of a professional, wife, and mother. Our focus is to provide the director with much creative freedom while maintaining a poignant narrative. We seek production support to cast talented actors who authentically represent each generation and showcase the talents of the entire cast and crew. The film will encourage viewers to reflect on the dynamic relationship between the individuals and the times they live in, filled with the prospect of life and cinematic imagination.

Director's Profile


After graduating from Ewha Womans University’s Department of Computer Science and Korean Academy of Film Arts(KAFA), she got her master’s degree on Eisenstein’s Montage theory from Seoul National University’s Department of Aesthetics. She worked as a journalist at the film magazine Kino and as an assistant director on three films by Director Im Kwon-taek. She made four short films: Cold River (2007), Finder (2008), opening film at Indieforum 2008, A Night and the Night (2009), Moral of My Time (2012), and three independent features: Upstanding Man (2015), which screened at Beijing International Film Festival 2015, Never Ever Rush (2018), which screened at Seoul Independent Film Festival 2018, A Lonely Island in the Distant Sea (2021). Her third feature film won the DGK MEGABOX award at the Busan International Film Festival 2021 and was screened at several film festivals.

Producer's Profile


Jenny Yang started her career at Busan Cinematheque 1/24, and worked in various film festivals. As a CEO of Haemil Pictures Inc. founded in 2017, she produced documentaries Courtesy to the Nation (Gwon Gyung-won, 2018), Montmartre de Papa (Min Byung-woo, 2020), and tvN Drama Stage: Park′s Secret Private Life (2017).

The production company, Bori and Odi (Barley and Mulberry), is named after an affection for movies that depict lives impacted by the winds of change and that mature into themselves, like ripening mulberry fruits or growing barley. Since launching the production and distribution of the independent feature film Upstanding Man (Kim Mi-young, 2015), the company has prioritized stories centered on upstanding individuals with moral fortitude rather than outstanding ones. Bori and Odi has produced Never Ever Rush (Kim Mi-young, 2018), A Lonely Island in the Distant Sea (Kim Mi-young, 2021), and is currently working Friends of This Life.