The key Asian fall festivals are located in Pusan, South Korea and Tokyo, Japan. Pusan is a relatively young fest -- this year will mark its 12th edition -- but has rapidly grown into an essential stop on the festival circuit for the Asian film community. "The festival brings together Asian filmmakers and encourages them to work together," South Korean culture minister Kim Myung Gon told the International Herald Tribune last year. The inaugural Asian Film Market added to the excitement in 2006.

The festival will open on October 4 with Chinese helmer Feng Xiaogang's latest epic, Assembly (trailer via MonkeyPeaches), according to The Korea Times. His last film was the beautiful yet hollow Shakespeare adaptation The Banquet. Assembly takes place during the Chinese Civil War in the late 1940s, where a fierce battle leaves thousands dead. An officer comes to realize his culpability and resolves to return honor to his fallen men. Evangelion 1.0: You Are (Not Alone) (website), based on a Japanese anime series, will close the festival, which runs until October 12.

The Tokyo International Film Festival opens the following week (October 20) with Midnight Eagle. The festival says the film is filled with "large-scaled suspenseful mountain action." Midnight Eagle is the third feature by director Izuru Narushima; he also co-wrote the delicate, powerful An Adolescent and scripted the less dramatic yet still intriguing Runin: Banished, so I'm eager to see what he does with an action picture. The Tokyo fest also announced special screenings of Francois Girard's Silk, Kenki Saegusa's The Invitation From Cinema Orion, and Jin Chen's Crossing Over, as well three films featuring the visual effects mastery of Ray Harryhausen. The fest runs until October 28.

[ Via Screen Daily ]