Director Hong Sang-soo’s Film ‘A Traveler’s Needs’ Wins Prestigious Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at Berlin International Film Festival

BERLIN, Germany – Director Hong Sang-soo’s latest film, “A Traveler’s Needs,” won the prestigious Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at the 74th Berlin International Film Festival. Held in Germany, the festival recognizes some of the most outstanding films from around the world. This marks the fifth time that one of Hong’s films has received a coveted Silver Bear award at the Berlinale.

“A Traveler’s Needs” stars French actor Isabelle Huppert and tells the story of a French woman who travels to Korea and teaches a Korean woman to speak French. The film explores themes of life’s challenges and the importance of communication. Huppert has previously collaborated with Hong in films like “In Another Country” (2012) and “Claire’s Camera” (2018).

During the awards ceremony in Berlin, Hong expressed his gratitude to the jury for recognizing his work. He admitted to being curious about their perception of his film and thanked Carlo Chatrian, the artistic director of the Berlinale, for consistently inviting him to the event over the years. Hong’s previous Silver Bear wins include Best Director for “The Woman Who Ran” (2020) and Best Screenplay for “Introduction” (2021).

While “A Traveler’s Needs” took home the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize, the top honor of the Berlinale, the Golden Bear, was awarded to French-Senegalese director Mati Diop’s documentary film “Dahomey.” Diop’s film focuses on the return of 26 royal treasures of the Kingdom of Dahomey to Benin.

The 74th Berlin International Film Festival featured a total of five Korean films, including “A Traveler’s Needs.” Apart from Hong’s film, the fourth installment of the “The Outlaws” franchise, titled “The Roundup” Punishment,” was showcased in the Special Gala section. Additionally, the occult thriller “Exhuma” and short films “It’s Okay!” and “Circle” were also featured at the festival.

The Berlin International Film Festival, known as the Berlinale, is a prominent event in the film industry, attracting filmmakers and cinephiles from around the world. Its recognition of Hong Sang-soo’s “A Traveler’s Needs” further solidifies the director’s standing as a master storyteller. With its thought-provoking narrative and brilliant performances, the film captivated audiences and the festival jury alike.