Mon, Nov 30, 2009 - Page 13 News List

Golden opportunities

Golden Horse has eased eligibility requirements and recognized digital cinema and multi-cultural films in a bid to become the most open-minded film competition in the Chinese-speaking world



Taiwan’s Leon Dai (戴立忍) and his black-and-white social drama No Pudeo Vivir Sin Ti (不能沒有你) swept the 46th Golden Horse Awards (金馬獎) on Saturday night. Dai took home top honors in five categories including Best Feature Film, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Outstanding Taiwanese Film of the Year.

The last time that the Best Picture award went to a Taiwanese production was seven years ago with Chang Tso-chi’s (張作驥) The Best of Times (美麗時光). According to awards and festival executive director Wen Tien-hsiang (聞天祥), the competition in the Best Director category was especially intense this year, with Tsai Ming-liang (蔡明亮) losing to Dai by merely one vote.

“No Pudeo Vivir Sin Ti may not be the most artistically accomplished movie of the year, but it is the type of film the jurors want to encourage ... Since Golden Horse is a competition for Chinese-language productions in Taiwan, the jurors naturally take into consideration the significance of the films in relation to the development of the local film industry when casting their votes,” Wen told the Taipei Times.

The success of Dai’s film at this year’s Golden Horse Awards is one example of changes the Golden Horse Film Festival (台北金馬影展) has made in order to remain competitive with other film festivals and awards ceremonies in the region, such as the Hong Kong Film Awards and Shanghai International Film Festival.

One important change involved modifying the jury system to make it more “logically consistent,” Wen said. Previously, the judging process was divided into three stages, with three different groups of judges. Each jury member was assigned to a limited number of award categories. This year each juror judged every award category.

46th Golden Horse Awards (2009)

■ Best Feature Film

No Pudeo Vivir Sin Ti (不能沒有你)

■ Best Director

Leon Dai (戴立忍), No Pudeo Vivir Sin Ti


■ Best Leading Actor

Nick Cheung (張家輝), The Beast Stalker (証人) Huang Bo (黃渤), Cow (鬥牛)

■ Best Leading Actress

Li Bingbing (李冰冰), The Message (風聲)

■ Best Supporting Actor

Wang Xueqi (王學圻), Forever Enthralled (梅蘭芳)

■ Best New Performer

Yu Shaoqun (余少群), Forever Enthralled (梅蘭芳)

■ Best Original Screenplay

Leon Dai (戴立忍) and Chen Wen-pin (陳文彬), No Pudeo Vivir Sin Ti (不能沒有你)

■ Best Screenplay Adaptation

Guan Hu (管虎), Cow (鬥牛)

■ Best Cinematography

Cao Yu (曹郁), City of Life and Death


■ Best Visual Effects

Wang Jianxiong (王建雄), Jimmy Chen (陳京民) and Li Liping (李麗萍), Crazy Racer (瘋狂的賽車)

■ Best Art Direction

Lee Tian-jue (李天爵), Patrick Dechesne and Alain-Pascal Housiaux, Face (臉)

■ Best Makeup and Costume Design

Christian Lacroix, Wang Chia-hui (王佳惠) and Anne Dunsford, Face (臉)

■ Best Action Choreography

Sammo Hung (洪金寶) and Leung Siu-hung

(梁小熊), Ip Man (葉問)

■ Best Film Editing

Cheung King-wai (張經緯), KJ: Music and Life


■ Best Original Film Score

Dou Wei (竇唯) and Bi Xiao-di (畢曉笛),

The Equation of Love and Death (李米的猜想)

■ Best Original Film Song

For My Heart (遇見) from Death Dowry (米香), written by Zeng Yan (曾檐), performed by Tao Hong (陶紅) and Tan Weiwei (譚維維)

■ Best Documentary

KJ: Music and Life (音樂人生)

■ Best Short Film

Sleeping With Her (片刻暖和)

■ Outstanding Taiwanese Film of the Year

No Pudeo Vivir Sin Ti (不能沒有你)

Outstanding Taiwanese Filmmaker

of the Year

Lee Lung-yue (李龍禹)

■ Lifetime Achievement Award

Ming Ji (明驥)

■ Special Contribution Award

George Wang (王玨)


One film that reflected the jurors’ distinct taste was KJ: Music and Life (音樂人生), a Hong Kong documentary that won in all categories it was nominated for, including Best Documentary, Best Film Editing and Best Sound Effects. Shot on DigiBeta, it was the first digital film to win a Golden Horse award and the first documentary to beat out its fiction counterparts for Best Film Editing and Best Sound Effects. The Golden Horse Awards were previously only open to movies shot in 35mm film.

In another significant development, the 46-year-old event relaxed eligibility rules for international collaborations, from a “both/and” rule to an “either/or” rule: now, half of the dialogue in a film has to be spoken one or more Chinese dialects, or at least six main crew members, one of whom has to be the director, must be of Chinese origin.

This change reflects the fact that Taiwanese society is becoming increasingly multi-cultural. In the case of Taiwanese director Ho Wi-ding’s (何蔚庭) forthcoming feature debut Pinoy Sunday (台北星期天), which chronicles the life of new immigrants in Taipei, the director would previously have had to have made his Southeast Asian actors speak broken Mandarin if he had wanted to submit the film to the Golden Horse Awards.

Orz Boyz (囧男孩) director Yang Ya-che (楊雅吉吉) says that because it is increasingly common for local filmmakers to work with their peers from other Asian countries, this new sense of openness is an advantage for Golden Horse. “It is rather narrow-minded to make a big deal about how many awards go to this or that Chinese or Hong Kong movie each year,” Yang said.

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