The best thing I learned from the Tilda Swinton–Margaret Cho kerfuffle of 2016 was that Tilda’s “colleague from Snowpiercer” Bong Joon-ho is making a monster movie for Netflix. (The second-best thing I learned? That “Tell me to fuck off if you feel like it” is a great email sign-off.) Somehow my IMDb radar had missed Okja, which was first announced as a Netflix project in November 2015. In the film, Okja is the name of a creature that is the best friend of a Korean girl named Mija. Conflict arises when a heartless corporation tries to capture Okja on some E.T. shit. “On the surface is a story about an animal,” says the director, “but it’s essentially a story about capitalism.” Coproduced by Brad Pitt’s Plan B Entertainment, and filmed in both South Korea and NYC, Okja stars Tilda, Jake Gyllenhaal, Paul Dano — and, as Tilda astutely points out, Korean American actor Steven Yeun and young Korean actress Ahn Seo-hyun. See, Margaret? Asian actors! In Asian roles! Stateside audiences will know director Bong from Snowpiercer, but don’t sleep on the hits from his Korean-only filmography: Barking Dogs Never Bite, Memories of Murder, Mother, and his first monster allegory movie, 2006’s The Host (currently streaming on Netflix). I didn’t even watch Snowpiercer and I’m all in on Okja. Also, Jake seems real stoked about it, and if Jake’s happy, I am, too.
Kakao was the highest salary-paying company last year, according to the Financial Supervisory Service. Employees at the top mobile messenger operator earned an average of 132.48 million won ($116,000). The KakaoTalk service operator said the exceptional figure is due to some staff who exercised employee stock options they received in 2014 as Kakao merged with portal service Daum Communications in 2014. Naver, the No. 1 portal site and mother company of KakaoTalk rival Line’s Line Japan, had an average salary last year of 68.02 million won.1
The images must occupy more than 30 percent of the front and back of cigarette packaging, and cigarette manufacturers have to change the pictures every 18 months, officials said. If the separate warning labels are counted, more than half of the front and back of the cigarette will show the grave health risks associated with smoking.1
Those Mevius packs are gonna look a lot less enticing.
An earnest Arabic-speaking correspondent is seated across from his colleague. He is attempting to explain a new global issue in the Arab world.
Correspondent: The Arab world surprised us. They were demanding a report or an interview. I did research about this issue, to know about this crazy love—this obsession. There was a strong passion, and I checked the details so I was surprised about what made them be passionate this way. In the beginning, they were angry with me and rebuked me, and the comments on my account were numerous. The people wrote on Twitter that they will skip school and university to watch this interview. So I told them that the interview will be broadcast, God willing. I also added that it will be available on YouTube, so do not skip classes. This phrase provoked them, as they replied that they are no longer young, and that they are between 19 and 29 years old. They added that they are upset because they are seen as children. This is the main idea. Yes, it became a global trend, but this issue deserves to be highlighted, as it is a new and different issue, if we may say.
Colleague: The issue needs to be studied.1
Husband: To my wife, who has supported me to this point, and those who have followed my career with admiration, my reported conduct is an act of betrayal that is in no way forgivable...a sin so serious I can never fully atone for it while alive. It’s hard to rebuild trust, but I would like to take this opportunity to do soul-searching and deal with my family matters.1
Wife: I share responsibility, and feel deeply sorry about it. As a husband, as a father, once again, I want to welcome you to our family.2