Berlinale 2024 | Korea’s wildly successful ‘Roundup’ series seeks wider audience at Berlinale

Feb24,2024


Don Lee attends the 'Beom-jo-do-si 4' (The Roundup: Punishment) premiere during the 74th Berlinale International Film Festival Berlin at Berlinale Palast on February 23, 2024 in Berlin, Germany.

Don Lee attends the 'Beom-jo-do-si 4' (The Roundup: Punishment) premiere during the 74th Berlin International Film Festival Berlin at Berlinale Palast on February 23, 2024 in Berlin, Germany. Photo credit: Andreas Rentz

One of South Korea's most popular crime action film series is hoping to take a leap to international success at the Berlin Film Festival on Friday, where its fourth installment, “The Roundup: Punishment,” will celebrate its world premiere.

The film, which follows Ma Seok-do, a tough-and-tough detective who takes down an illegal online gambling ring, joins a long list of South Korean films that have followed, including 2019's smash-hit “Parasite.” ” has made its way to Western audiences after. ,

Don Lee, who played the detective in “Eternals” and “Train to Busan” and took story credit, said the plan was to develop the franchise gradually.

He said, “I am currently planning the eighth sequel,” which aims to show his character's growth with each case, as he becomes wiser and more experienced.

Lee added, “We also want the action in the films to gradually evolve and change, and you'll be able to see that in the fourth sequel.”

From left, actors Park Ji-hwan, Don Lee, Kim Moo-yeul and Lee Dong-hwi raise their fists while posing during a photocall for their film 'Beom-jo-do-si 4' (The Roundup: Punishment, Berlinale) Let's squeeze.  Special event at the Berlinale Film Festival in Berlin, Germany

From left, actors Park Ji-hwan, Don Lee, Kim Moo-yeul and Lee Dong-hwi raise their fists as they pose during a photocall for their film 'Beom-jo-do-si 4' (The Roundup: Punishment, Berlinale) Let's squeeze. Special event at the Berlinale Film Festival in Berlin, Germany. Photo Credit: Soren Stach

Heo Myeong-haeng, who was the stunt coordinator for the film series before turning to directing, said that he felt some pressure but was relieved by the high caliber of the cast and the script.

He told Reuters, “Of course it has the same fun and action elements as the previous films. The different thing is that we have new villains, and they have great chemistry.”

The Crime City series began in 2017 with “The Outlaws”, one of Korea's highest-grossing R-rated films, followed by “The Roundup” in 2022 and “The Roundup: No Way Out” in 2023. I.

Actor Kim Moo-yeul, who plays the villain Baek Chang-gi, said that Heo's background gave him confidence for action scenes.

Kim said, “It was quite difficult to shoot the action, but his experience made it easy and everything went really smoothly.” Kim said that he had done a lot of physical preparation for the role of an ex-Special Forces assassin.

“I exercised a lot with the dagger,” he recalled.

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