THE HOST 2 News
Korean studio reveals more details for the sequel
Author: Kim Song-ho (Loomis)
Source: Chungeorahm Film official press release, various
Chungeorahm, the production company of THE HOST (Gwoemul, 2006), has provided more plot details and an early conceptual sketch from the upcoming sequel.
According to the official press release and reports from various Korean news sites, THE HOST 2 will take place in Cheonggyecheon (or Cheonggye Stream), a creek running through the downtown of Seoul that leads to the Han River. Cheonggyecheon was covered with concrete between the 1950s and 70s to build a road, but restored in 2005.
The story is set in 2003 when the restoration was at an early stage. Principal characters, such as street vendors, demolition contractors, and policemen are involved with the disorder and conflict caused by the restoration— one of which is, or course, the monsters from underground. The script, written by well-known comic artist Kang Full (as previously reported in SciFi Japan’s THE HOST 2 Update), was submitted on December 20, 2007 after six months of writing. The press release confirmed that the sequel is actually a prequel, which will fill in the blanks of the prologue of the first film. The press release also confirmed that there will be multiple monsters appearing in the new film.
Along with some plot details, Chungeorahm released one of Kang Full’s early conceptual sketches. The sketch describes a scene where a forklift driver blocks a monster that is trying to climb to the surface from underground. In the press release, Kang said, “I wanted to maintain the grace of the original film and to overcome the difficulties and limitations a sequel could have. And I wish to show more action with multiple monsters.”
Because of its subject matter, THE HOST 2 is very likely to feature as much serious political and social subtext as the previous film. The restoration of Cheonggyecheon was an administration of Lee Myung-bak, current President-elect of Korea. Lee was the mayor of Seoul between 2002 and 2006, and the restoration of Cheonggyecheon was his election pledge. Before the restoration, Cheonggyecheon was notorious for its foul underground water and as a architectural safety hazard. Although the restoration has now made the creek one of the major tourist attractions of Seoul, it has drastically changed the everyday lives of the people living around Cheonggyecheon.
Reportedly, there is a line in Kang’s script, spoken by a municipal officer— “The mayor (Lee) who plans to run for the next presidency ordered that the restoration of Cheonggyecheon must be completed before his term is over.” The restoration made Lee a public figure and it is generally agreed that it greatly helped him win the recent presidential election. However, it also caused criticism after the completion. Many merchants, including street vendors who had long-established business near Cheonggyecheon had to be relocated and there were several complications related to compensation for them. And the current stream of Cheonggyecheon is not from the upper stream, but water supply facilities. These are the reasons why many, including environmentalists and scholars, accuse the restoration of being nothing but a waste of taxes and a demonstration of Lee Myung-bak’s hubrice. With these aspects, THE HOST 2 is expected to be quite controversial when released, especially in the early years of Lee’s presidency.
The director and cast members are not yet confirmed. As SFJ reported before, shooting will begin this summer and the finished film will be released in summer of 2009. The budget, however, is likely to be higher than the previous film.
For more information on THE HOST 2, please see the previous coverage here on SciFi Japan: