CULTURE Zhang Yimou and Chinese filmmakers win big at Asian Film Awards


Zhang Yimou and Chinese filmmakers win big at Asian Film Awards

13:39, October 10, 2021

Prominent Chinese director Zhang Yimou won best director, and the leading actress in his "One Second" won best newcomer at the 15th Asian Film Awards on Friday, where other Chinese films "The Eight Hundred" and "Cliff Walkers" also received awards.

Director Zhang Yimou speaks via video link to accept the award for best director for his film "One Second" during the hybrid format ceremony of the 15th Asian Film Awards on Oct. 8, 2021. Photo courtesy of AFAA

Zhang called "One Second" his love letter to cinema during his award acceptance speech via video link. "This film has special meaning to me. We all know that the cine film will soon die out, and when we look back on the days when we watched cine films, which form most of my memories from my youth."

"The film is our forever dream," he added.

"One Second" also earned the best newcomer award for the rising actress Liu Haocun.

Several other Chinese films won awards, including another film from Zhang, "Cliff Walkers,” which took home best editing for film editor Li Yongyi. In addition, Guan Hu's war epic "The Eight Hundred" won best visual effects. For two Chinese regions, Hong Kong's "Limbo" won best production design and best sound awards, while Taiwan's "The Silent Forest" won best supporting actor for actor Kim Hyun-bin.

A poster of Zhang Yimou's "One Second,” which shows lead actress Liu Haocun, who wins the best newcomer award at the hybrid format ceremony of the 15th Asian Film Awards on Oct. 8, 2021. [Image courtesy of Huanxi Media]

The Asian Film Awards announced the winners in 18 categories at the ceremony hosted by the Asian Film Awards Academy (AFAA) in conjunction with Busan International Film Festival (BIFF) and Asian Contents & Film Market (ACFM) at the Paradise Hotel Busan in South Korea. Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the ceremony was held in hybrid format with a total of 80 nominees attending on-site or participating online.

The biggest winner of the night was Kiyoshi Kurosawa's wartime period drama "Wife of a Spy" (Japan), which received the best film award, best actress (Aoi Yu), and the best costume design (Koketsu Haruki). Meanwhile, Yoo Ah-in, who played a mute protagonist in "Voice of Silence" (South Korea) won the best actor award. South Korean actor and singer Lee Byung-hun received the Excellence in Asian Cinema Award, celebrating his stellar acting career spanning over 30 years.

Inaugurated in 2007, the Asian Film Awards celebrates excellence in Asian cinema through the annual presentation of awards to talents and films that make up the region's dynamic film industries. Founded in China's Hong Kong, the event is held in different locations each year, such as South Korea's Busan and China's Macao, to reflect its reach across the region.

Winners for the 15th Asian Film Awards:

Best Film: "Wife of a Spy" by Kiyoshi Kurosawa

Best director: Zhang Yimou, for "One Second"

Best new director: Hong Eui-jeong for "Voice of Silence"

Best actor: Yoo Ah-in in "Voice of Silence"

Best actress: Aoi Yu in "Wife of a Spy"

Best supporting actor: Kim Hyun-bin for "The Silent Forest"

Best supporting actress: Makita Aju for "True Mothers"

Best screenplay: Chaitanya Tamhane for "The Disciple"

Best newcomer: Liu Haocun in "One Second"

Best editing: Li Yongyi for "Cliff Walkers"

Best visual effects: Tim Crosbie, Joy Wu for "The Eight Hundred"

Best cinematography: Masoud Amini Tirani for "The Wasteland"

Best costume design: Koketsu Haruki for "Wife of a Spy"

Best production design: Kenneth Mak for"Limbo"

Best original music: Day Tai for "The Way We Keep Dancing"

Best sound: Nopawat Likitwong for "Limbo"

Excellence in Asian cinema: Lee Byung-hun

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