Finecut Adds Outbreak Thriller ‘Toxic’ to Berlin Market Slate

Leading South Korean film sales firm Finecut has boarded “Toxic,” a fact-based drama-thriller about a mysterious outbreak that killed thousands. The firm, which is also representing Hong Sang-soo’s Berlin competition title “Introduction,” will unveil the new title to buyers at next month’s European Film Market.

The film is the dramatization of events between 1994 and 2011 in which at least 1,600, and possibly as many as 14,000, people in Korea died. Consumer goods companies including the U.K.’s Reckitt-Benckiser sold tens of millions of humidifier-disinfectants for everyday use. Some included medicinal claims such as the suggestion that they would be good for people suffering from the common cold. Instead, with possible government complicity, the products skipped proper testing and were later found to contain chemicals that caused irreversible lung damage.

The film centers on an ER doctor whose wife may have lost her life because of the product. Along with other victims, he spent years trying to take on the government and the industrial giants.

“Toxic” is directed by Cho Yong-sun (“No Breathing”) and produced by Masterone Entertainment and The Contents On. The cast is headed by Kim Sang-kyong (“The Vanished,” “Hahaha,” “May 18,” “Memories Of Murder”), Lee Sun-bin (“Mission: Possible,” “Ma and Me,” “Rampant,” “Familyhood”) and Yoon Kyung-ho (“Start-Up,” “The Dude In Me,” “Intimate Strangers,” Okja”).

Headed by Suh Young-joo, Finecut is also using Berlin to present recently completed drama “Dust Man,” by Kim Na-kyung; Lee Ji-won’s drama “The Kids Are Fine (in post-production); and Choi Min-sik-starring comedy “Heaven to the Land of Happiness,” by Im Sang-soo (“The Housemaid”).

The company’s back catalog includes contemporary Korean classics “Burning,” “The Wailing” and Miracle In Cell No. 7.” In addition to “Introduction,” Finecut handles multiple previous Hong films including “the Woman Who Ran,” “Right Now, Wrong Then,” and “On The Beach At Night Alone.”

For many years, the company was the go to sales agent for the late Kim Ki-duk. Its library includes Kim’s “Pieta,” “Arirang” and Moebius.”

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