SOAS University of London

Centre of Korean Studies

In the Absence (2018)

In the Absence (2018)
Gary Byung-Seok Kam (Producer)

Date: 6 February 2019Time: 7:15 PM

Finishes: 6 February 2019Time: 8:30 PM

Venue: Brunei Gallery Room: BG01

Type of Event: Film Screening

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Grand Jury Award, DOC NYC 2018
Official selection, International Documentary Festival Amsterdam (IDFA) 2018 

  • Produced by Gary Byung-Seok Kam
  • Directed by Seung-Jun Yi
  • Executive producer: Laura Poitras, Charlotte Cook (Field of Vision, USA)


Previous documentaries have been made about the sinking of the Korean ferry Sewol, in which more than 300 passengers and crew members lost their lives. But while other films concentrated on the attribution of guilt based on interviews with the people involved, In the Absence focuses entirely on the event itself, with video and sound recordings made on the day in question. It’s disconcerting to watch the disaster unfolding in meticulous detail, as it becomes clear that nobody is taking the lead to evacuate the passengers. Even more disturbing is the absence of a rescue operation as the ferry disappears beneath the waves.

The screening (29mins) will be followed by a Q&A with Producer Gary Byung-seok Kam.


This event is open to the public and free to attend, however registration is required. Online registration

Organiser: SOAS Centre of Korean Studies

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Contact Tel: +44 (0)20 7898 4893