Daejong Film Awards Issues Official Response To Controversy Over Substitute Award Acceptance

The 55th Daejong Film Awards has recently come under fire for a multitude of reasons.

The Daejong Film Awards (also referred to as the Grand Bell Awards) are given out annually by the Motion Pictures Association of Korea.

This year’s event was held on October 22 at the Sejong Center in Seoul, where Japanese musician Ryuichi Sakamoto was chosen as the winner of “Best Soundtrack” for his work in “The Fortress.” Due to Ryuichi Sakamoto’s absence, a substitute presenter from “The Fortress” was supposed to accept the award in his place, but the appearance of trot singer Han Sarang, who had no relation to the musician nor the film, accepting the award caused great confusion.

“The Fortress” also won awards for “Best Lighting” and “Best Cinematography” that day, but it was soon revealed that the “Best Lighting” award hadn’t been delivered to those at “The Fortress.”

After the controversy spread online, the 55th Daejong Film Awards gave an official statement regarding the multiple issues. Their statement reads as follows:

“Hello, this is the Daejong Film Awards organizing committee.

“We selected Han Sarang, who accepted the ‘Best Soundtrack’ award, and Laa Lee, who accepted the ‘Best Cinematography’ award, after receiving recommendations from the Korean Film And Music Association and Korean Society of Cinematographers.

“Because Ryuichi Sakamoto of ‘The Fortress,’ who won the ‘Best Soundtrack’ award, had scheduled plans in the United States, and Kim Ji Yong of ‘The Fortress,’ who won the ‘Best Cinematography’ award, had scheduled plans in France, the Korean Movie Actor Association contacted the film’s production company, but were not able to get in touch with them. Because we were not able to contact the production company, those who were chosen to receive the ‘Best Soundtrack’ award and ‘Best Cinematography’ award in place of the winners were based on recommendations of the Korean Film And Music Association and Korean Society of Cinematographers.

“We’d like to express our regret concerning the actions of Kim Ji Yeon, the production company leader at ‘The Fortress.’

“We’d also like to say thank you again for the interest and encouragement towards the Daejong Film Awards.”

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