Hong Sang-soo in divorce mediation after Kim Min-hee affair surfaces; what's next?

The director went for divorce mediation after several attempts to file for divorce by mutual consent failed.

Hong Sang-soo
Director Hong Sang-Soo attends a news conference to promote the movie "Nugu-ui Ttal-Do Anin Haewon" (Nobody's Daughter Haewon) at the 63rd Berlinale International Film Festival in Berlin February 15, 2013. Reuters

Popular director Hong Sang-soo, who created buzz in the South Korean film industry with his affair with a much younger actress, Kim Min-hee, has filed for divorce mediation with his wife of 31 years at the Seoul Family Court on November 19.

The 56-year-old director went for divorce mediation after several attempts to file for divorce by mutual consent with his wife, Mrs. Jo, failed.

Divorce mediation is a process in which both the parties find solutions to conflicting issues like child custody and spousal support. This negotiation is done in the presence of an arbitrator who acts as a neutral third party and the terms decided will have legal validity. Korean law urges estranged couples to through mediation so that court's time is saved from hearing divorce trials.

According to AllKpop, one lawyer noted that if Hong admits to his affair he becomes "a husband and spouse with a liability toward his family, and may logically lose his right to request for a divorce. How the court determines whether or not Mrs. Jo had a part in the resulted affair, or whether or not Hong Sang Soo is responsible for a marriage failure, will be very important."

Hong started dating Kim Min-hee , who is 22 years younger to him, in the sets of "Right Now, Wrong Then". After the news went round, Hong left his wife, whom he met in the United States while studying film in the 1980s and their daughter. However, Jo was not available for any comment regarding the matter.

Hong Sang-soo is a critically acclaimed director who is known for directing very popular commercial films like The Day a Pig Fell into the Well and Night and Day. He is also known for portraying very relatable characters in his films and depictions of everyday human emotion.