Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Good night for Southeast Asia at the 6th Asian Film Awards

Lovely Man director Teddy Soeriaatmadja and Best Actor winner Donny Damara. Photo via YesAsia Facebook.
Indonesia and the Philippines as well as a Thai composer were among the winners at the 6th Asian Film Awards on Monday night in Hong Kong.

The big winner was the Oscar-winning Iranian courtroom-family drama A Separation, which took the awards for Best Film, Best Director and Best Screenwriter for Asghar Farhadi and Best Editor for Hayedeh Safiyari.

Hong Kong director Peter Chan's historical martial-arts mystery Wu Xia was another big winner, taking three prizes, among them Best Composer, a prize shared by a trio, "Comfort" Chan Kwon-wing, Peter Kam and Thailand's Chatchai Pongpraphan. Wu Xia also won for cinematography and production design.

Indonesia's Donny Damara won best actor for Lovely Man. The '80s model, basically making his debut as a star in a feature film, portrayed a father who's gone to work as a transvestite prostitute on a bridge in Jakarta.There, he meets his teenage daughter – a traditional Muslim girl from a rural town – who has the shock of her young life.

Donny's win was an upset at the Asian Film Awards, which are traditionallly dominated by South Korea and Hong Kong, as well as Japan and China. Andy Lau, star of veteran Hong Kong director Ann Hui's much-acclaimed A Simple Life was favored to win. Andy's co-star Deanie Ip won Best Actress and Hui was the first female director to win the Hong Kong International Film Festival's Lifetime Achievement Award.

Andy did win the popular-vote People's Choice Award for Best Actor. He was mugged by Filipino actress-comedienne Eugene Domingo, who won the People's Choice Award for best actress for the mockumentary The Woman in the Septic Tank. She took time time to tweet the results of her win and snap photos of herself with Andy.

The best-supporting actress winner was Shamaine Buencamino of the Philippines for Niño, which won the New Currents Award for director Loy Arcenas at last year's Busan International Film Festival. She beat out Cris Horwang, who co-starred in Pen-ek Ratanaruang's upside-down hitman tale Headshot. Ananda Everingham was a co-presenter of the award with Japanese actress Karina.

Thai star Mario Maurer was a nominee for The Outrage (U Mong Pa Mueang), the remake of Akira Kurosawa's Rashomon. He was a co-presenter of the award for best editing with Seediq Bale star Umin Boya. But Mario lost out on the best supporting actor prize to Taiwanese actor Lawrence Ko for the gymnastics flick Jump! Ashin.

Other nominees included Outrage costume designer Noppadol Techo.

The jury was headed by Singaporean director Eric Khoo, marking the first time the AFA had reached out beyond Hong Kong for its jury president.

The winning Wu Xia composers, from left, Chatchai Pongprapaphan, Chan Kwong-wing and Peter Kam. Photo via YesAsia Facebook.

Here's the complete list of winners:

  • Best Film: Nader and Simin, A Separation, Iran
  • Best Director: Asghar Farhadi, Nader and Simin, A Separation
  • Best Actor: Donny Damara, Lovely Man, Indonesia
  • Best Actress: Deanie Ip, A Simple Life, Hong Kong
  • Best Newcomer: Ni Ni, The Flowers of War, China
  • Best Supporting Actor: Lawrence Ko, Jump Ashin!, Taiwan
  • Best Supporting Actress: Shamaine Buencamin, Niño, Philippines
  • Best Screenwriter: Asghar Farhadi, Nader and Simin, A Separation
  • Best Cinematographer: Yee Chung-man and Sun Li, Wu Xia, China/Hong Kong
  • Best Composer: Chan Kwon-wing, Peter Kam and Chatchai Pongpraphan, Wu Xia
  • Best Editor: Hayedeh Safiyari, Nader and Simin, A Separation
  • Best Visual Effects: Wook Kim, Josh Cole, Frankie Chung, The Flying Swords of Dragon Gate, Hong Kong/China
  • Best Costume Designer: Yee Chung-man, Lai Hsuan-wu, The Flying Swords of Dragon Gate
  • Lifetime Achievment Award: Ann Hui, Hong Kong
  • Edward Yang New Talent Award, Edwin, Indonesia

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