'Parasite' director Bong Joon-Ho: 'It’s fearful to watch the hate crimes against Asian-Americans'

Oscar-winning director explained what he thought the film industry could do to tackle the issue

This Oct. 8, 2019 photo shows filmmaker Bong Joon-Ho posing for a portrait at the Whitby Hotel screening room in New York to promote his film "Parasite." On Monday, Jan. 13, Joon-Ho was nominated for an Oscar for best director for his work on the film. (Photo by Christopher Smith/Invision/AP)
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Oscar-winning South Korean director Bong Joon-Ho has shared his thoughts on the rise of anti-Asian hate in the US.

Despite having an outsider perspective on the situation, he called on his fellow directors in Hollywood to tackle the issue through their films.

"As someone who is part of mankind, as a person, it's quite fearful to watch the hate crimes against Asian-Americans and the BLM movement," he said through a translator during an interview at Chapman University's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts in California.

"I do think about what the film industry can do at this time. With films, creating a film takes a lot of time and a lot of money. It can't really respond quickly to issues that are currently happening in society."

However, Bong said filmmakers should not shy away from commenting on big social issues.

"But ironically, because of that, I think creators and filmmakers can be bolder with dealing with issues and they shouldn't be afraid to confront them. I'm currently thinking of Spike Lee's Do the Right Thing."

Bong said that film was an example of how directors can confront social issues through their work. He also cited how he tried to take the same approached with Parasite.

"The film talks about the haves and have-nots of our current society. It began with a question: 'what does it mean to be poor or rich in our current times?'"

"As creators and artists, you sort of have to see through the essence and the central questions in our society through the days that you live through and send a reply to those questions through your work.”

Parasite made history when it become the first film not in the English language to win the Best Picture Oscar in 2020. It also took home the Academy Awards for Best Director, International Film Feature and Best Original Screenplay.