2019 Official Selection
Directed by Mai Nakanishi
2018| Korea/Japan | 12:45 min.

A college student goes for a part-time job interview and hired on short notice by a single working mother to be a babysitter for her four-year-old daughter Hana. But when she is left alone with Hana, strange things start to happen.

Director Bio
Born in Tokyo but having spent most of her youth abroad, Mai has been involved in filmmaking since 2013. She has worked on a variety of international projects including working as an assistant director for one of Asia’s prominent arthouse auteur Eric Khoo and producing for Japanese genre maven Sion Sono to name a few. She was also selected as a fellow of the Asian Film Academy 2016 organized by the Busan International Film Festival where she was invited to produce a short film under the mentorship of the world-renowned Taiwanese master Tsai Ming-Liang. “HANA” is her directorial debut.

Director Statement

Inspired by my own childhood experience growing up, HANA portrays a story of the mother and the daughter who will never be able to connect physically and emotionally.

In HANA, Mrs.Lee represents a working mother who has devoted her life to career to support her family but in return, she had no choice but to give up her maternal responsibilities. Like so many working mothers who had to sacrifice their children for work and not being able to keep their work–life balance within society, Mrs.Lee is a symbolic figure of a woman hugely affected by her society.

I wanted to make HANA not as a conventional horror film but realistic yet haunting and emotional drama showing something of the social realities of a family with a working mother in contemporary South Korea and Japan.