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‘Parasite’ Director Bong Joon-ho Might Be the Best Late-Night Guest Ever

Client: Bong Joon Ho - Director Date: 12/11/2019

If you needed more proof that South Korean thriller Parasite and its director, Bong Joon-ho, are two of the most important names this awards season, look no further than Monday’s Tonight Show. It’s not often a director gets an invite to the late-night publicity circuit—but admiration for director Bong runs deep, as evidenced by the existence of a #bonghive across various corners of the internet. And during his appearance across the desk from Jimmy Fallon, Bong did not disappoint, getting a laugh almost immediately as he told his host, through a translator, “I’d like to say as little as possible.”

Bong was uninterested in the standard plugs and teasers of the publicity circuit, and for good reason. As he told Fallon, “the film is best when you go into it cold.” The audience seemed amused as Fallon reminded his guest through chuckles that The Tonight Show is a talk show—“so you have to say something.” Bong relented, offering a tidy, if vague, summary of his record-breaking thriller: “It’s a story about family,” Bong offered. “The son goes into a rich house as a tutor and the story unfolds from there.”

Parasite’s accomplishments are hard to overstate. The film netted three Golden Globe nominations on Monday morning, after having broken specialty box office records in the U.S. and becoming a massive hit overseas. Perhaps most important, Parasite also won Bong the Palme d’Or at Cannes—making him the first Korean director to receive the distinction. After its screening at the French festival in May, the film also earned its director and cast an eight-minute standing ovation—which Bong eventually halted with a tidy “Thank you, let’s all go home.”

When Fallon asked Bong about that blunt directive, he offered an extremely relatable explanation. “Actually the screening was very late,” he said in English before his translator picked back up, translating the rest: “So the standing ovation lasted very long, but the actors and I were very hungry because we couldn’t eat dinner. We all were saying to each other, ‘We’re so hungry,’ and they ended up subtitling it in the video. But the crowd never stopped, so finally I said, ‘Let’s go home.’”

https://www.vanityfair.com/hollywood/2019/12/parasite-bong-joon-ho-tonight-show-jimmy-fallon-interview?utm_brand=vf&utm_social-type=owned&mbid=social_facebook&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&fbclid=IwAR1DQd06LAgcXVuVWz6q80TSvcIxk44F_cJfmPVibiwOU5P8VCXEnDKRx80