Gwei Lun-mei, Lau Ching-wan, Life without Principle and Beijing Blues Win Golden Horses


Taiwanese actress Gwei Lun-mei (桂錀媄) was honored with the Best Leading Actress award at the 49th Golden Horse Film Festival, yesterday.

Gwei broke into tears after her name was announced, shakily thanking her director and fellow actors in her speech.

“I love movies, I will keep on doing this for a long time,” she said.

This has been the first time in six years that Taiwan has won an award for Best Leading Actress. Although Sandrine Pinna was nominated for Best Leading Actress for the film “Touch of the Light,” the award ended up going to fellow actress Gwei. This was the third time she has been nominated.

The biggest winner of the night was the film “Life without Principle” (奪命金), which walked away with the Best Leading Actor award presented to Hong Kong actor Lau Ching-wan (劉青雲), Best Director presented to Hong Kong film director Johnnie To (杜琪峰), as well as the award for Best Original Screenplay.

This is the first time Lau has won an award for the best leading actor at the Golden Horse Awards. In his speech, Lau humorously said, “Acting is not about awards. No, who am I kidding; It is about the awards.”

Best Feature Film

Nevertheless, Taiwan did not take home the biggest award of the night — Best Feature Film — with the honor instead going to rival Chinese film “Beijing Blues” (神探亨特張). “Beijing Blues” was also lauded with the Best Cinematography and Film Editing Award.

Taiwanese film “Touch of the Light” (逆光飛翔) curtsied with the Best New Director Award presented to Chang Jun-chi (張榮吉) and Outstanding Filmmaker of the Year presented to Jimmy Huang (黃裕翔).

Blind pianist Huang thanked the production company and his family, finishing with a quote from the movie, “How would you know how far you could go if you never try?” “Touch of the Light” is also Chang’s first feature film.

All five nominated films for the Best New Director Award were produced in Taiwan, including “Cha Cha for Twins” (寶米恰恰), “Din Tao: Leader of the Parade” (陣頭), “Silent Code” (BBS 鄉民的正義) and “Black & White: The Dawn of Assault” (痞子英雄之全面開戰).

More than once, the revival of Taiwanese films over these recent years was mentioned during the evening.

A special montage of Taiwanese classic films was screened as a tribute to the past 30 years of Taiwan cinema.

The Taiwanese film “Gf*Bf” (女朋友。男朋友) was selected by the audience for the Audience Choice Award.

Although nominated for seven awards, including best director, feature film, leading actor and original screenplay, it walked away with only one award — best actress.

The Golden Horse Award ceremony kicked off its 49th edition at the Yilan Performance Arts Center yesterday, celebrating the works of filmmakers and actors from Hong Kong, Taiwan and mainland China.

The ceremony opened with show host Tsang Bowie (曾寶儀) and Huang Bo (黃渤) showing off dance and singing skills while performing a Broadway dance routine.

Huang showcased a special hairstyle with aluminum foil strips stuck in his hair at the red carpet event, exclaiming that it was for “the party.”

As both hosts competed over which country charged less at the theaters, they also reminded the audience about the importance of protecting copyrights.

Veteran Hong Kong singer Sally Yeh (葉蒨文) performed a medley of theme songs from classic films such as “A Chinese Ghost Story” (倩女幽魂), “Infernal Affairs” (無間道) and “C’est la vie, mon cheri” (新不了情). Another highlight performance of the night was Jimmy Huang’s piano accompanying singer Lala Xu (徐佳瑩).

As a prelude for the Best Director Award, Xu sang a medley of the five theme songs from films garnering best director nominations.