A crowd of top stars descended on Taipei for the Golden Horse Awards, often dubbed the Oscars of Chinese-language film, held on Saturday night (Nov 17).
The 55th edition of the annual awards was one of the more star-studded one in recent years.
Led by Oscar-winning Taiwanese-American director Lee Ang, who is chairman of the award’s executive committee, this year saw the return of superstar Gong Li, who famously had an ugly feud with the awards in 2014 after she failed to win the Best Actress honour.
Gong chaired this year’s jury, seemingly burying the hatchet with the awards show, which she once deemed amateur and unprofessional.
This year also saw guests like Hong Kong actor Andy Lau walk the red carpet, as well as A-list celebrities Carina Lau, Rene Liu and Eason Chan.
Big-names were also in the nominations this year with acclaimed Chinese director Zhang Yimou’s Shadow up for 12 awards. Zhang appeared alongside Deng Chao and Sun Li, his two lead actors. All three are up for individual awards for Best Director, Best Actor and Best Actress respectively.
Deng and Sun, who are married in real life, will compete with Roy Chiu and Hsieh Ying-xuan of Taiwan. Chiu and Hsieh are both nominated for film Dear EX about a widow fighting for her late husband’s inheritance with his male lover.
The film, which touches on themes of homosexuality and its place in society, is a timely one for Taiwan, which will hold a referendum on whether the island’s civil law should recognise same-sex marriage later this month.
While many nominations went to Chinese talents and titles, Taiwanese and Hong Kong talents took home the first crop of acting awards. Ding Ning, dressed in a slinky gold number, won Best Supporting Actress for Cities Of Last Things while veteran Hong Kong stage actor Ben Yuen took home the honour for Best Supporting Actor with his role in Tracey.
Best New Performer went to Si Pangoyod, a child star and a member of the indigenous Tao people of Taiwan. The 14-year-old embraced his mother, who cried in joy when his name was called. The boy appeared on the red carpet in a vest and underwear – his people’s traditional wear – but changed into a shirt and pants for the main ceremony.
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