Experiencing Interruptions?

Ten by Ten

There is no denying the evocative power of food to remind us of who we are and where we come from. And after living in Asia for over fifteen years, Jessica was longing for the burgers and barbecue of her native Tennessee.

With the help of her husband Dongseop, Jessica opened an American-style diner out of her home on Jeju Island, South Korea in 2018. But after being featured on one of the country’s most popular television shows, the couple must now adapt to the shock of their newfound TV fame, the crowds of curious new customers it brings, and all this amidst the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Exploring themes of food, home, identity, and celebrity, Ten by Ten is an intimate portrait of Jessica’s journey through these events as she learns to navigate the blurred boundaries between private life and public persona.

  • Jami L. Bennett
  • Jami L. Bennett
  • Jami L. Bennett
  • Jessica Bennett
    Key Cast
  • Dongseop Shim
    Key Cast
  • Project Type:
    Documentary, Short, Student
  • Genres:
    documentary short, ethnographic documentary
  • Runtime:
    29 minutes 16 seconds
  • Completion Date:
    November 2, 2021
  • Country of Origin:
    United Kingdom
  • Country of Filming:
    Korea, Republic of
  • Language:
    English, Korean
  • Shooting Format:
    Digital, 4K
  • Aspect Ratio:
  • Film Color:
  • First-time Filmmaker:
  • Student Project:
    Yes - University of Manchester
  • Grierson British Documentary Awards
    London, England
    United Kingdom
    November 10, 2022
    Grierson British Documentary Awards
    Best Student Documentary - Winner
  • Nashville Film Festival
    Nashville, Tennessee
    United States
    October 4, 2022
    North American Premiere
    PBS-Reel South Short Award - Winner
  • DocUtah International Film Festival
    St. George, Utah
    United States
    November 4, 2022
    Emerging Artist Award - Winner
  • Jean Rouch International Film Festival
    May 8, 2022
    International Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Society for Visual Anthropology Film & Media Festival
    Seattle, Washington
    United States
    November 10, 2022
    Best Student Film - Honorable Mention
  • Ethnofest
    November 25, 2022
    Greek Premiere
    Official Selection
  • American Documentary & Animation Film Festival
    Palm Springs, California
    United States
    April 1, 2023
    California Premiere
    Official Selection
  • Tennessee International Indie Film Festival
    Franklin, Tennessee
    United States
    November 2, 2022
    Best of Festival, Best Short Film - Winner
  • EthnoKino Film Festival
    October 1, 2022
    Swiss Premiere
    Emerging Young Talents - Official Selection
  • Regard Bleu Film Festival
    October 14, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Ethnological Documentary Film Festival
    Macedonia, the former Yugoslav Republic of
    October 7, 2022
    Official Selection
  • IFF Etnofilm Festival
    November 10, 2022
    Official Selection
  • Days of Ethnographic Film Festival
    February 23, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Ethnografilm
    April 6, 2023
    Official Selection
  • Royal Anthropological Institute Film Festival
    Bristol, England
    United Kingdom
    March 3, 2023
    Official Selection
  • North East International Film Festival
    Newcastle, England
    United Kingdom
    November 20, 2022
    UK Premiere
    Official Selection
Director Biography - Jami L. Bennett

Jami L. Bennett is a filmmaker and anthropological researcher from East Tennessee who grew up on a steady diet of sweet tea, Saturday matinees, and back issues of NatGeo magazine. She first picked up a camera out of a desire to capture her Appalachian community’s stories and pursued anthropology to better understand the people telling them.

A 2021 graduate of the University of Manchester, Jami produced Ten by Ten as part of her MA in Visual Anthropology. This film was awarded the Best Student Documentary prize at the 2022 Grierson British Documentary Awards, in addition to several other honors along the international film festival circuit.

Jami is drawn to stories about outsiders, identity, and notions of belonging. And with her collaborative, intimate style of filmmaking (and a healthy respect for humor), she aims to craft narratives that resonate with a diverse audience both within and beyond the academic sphere. Based in the United Kingdom at present, she has several projects in development and continues to build a body of creative and academic work.

Add Director Biography
Director Statement

When I flew to Jeju Island, South Korea in the summer of 2021, Ten by Ten was not the documentary I went there to make. My original thesis research centered on filming an ancestor memorial rite called gijesa, a feast ceremony that my brother-in-law Dongseop performs every July on the anniversary of his father’s death.

Fate (and the COVID-19 pandemic) had other plans.

Frequently changing immigration and quarantine policies delayed my arrival in Korea by more than six weeks and the opportunity to document the entirety of the ceremony passed me by. However, as fate would have it, my delayed arrival placed me in Jeju during Jessica and Dongseop’s television premiere and their sudden brush with fame. I picked up my camera, captured the story as it unfolded, and was there to witness a truly special moment in the lives of my family. This project was so much more than a film or a thesis… It was a gift.