‘Original’ wins big at Shanghai fest

Michelle Yeoh teams with John Woo on 'World'

SHANGHAI — Denmark had a big night at the Jin Jue Golden Goblet awards Sunday in Shanghai with Danish-Swedish drama “Original” scooping awards for best pic and male thesp Sverrir Gudnason and Simone Tang drawing the actress nod for “Aching Hearts.”

The Golden Goblets mark a highpoint of the 12th Shanghai fest, which has long been seen as a provincial affair, but the growing muscle of the Chinese film biz, combined with stark increases in B.O. in the world’s most populous nation, means this year’s event was more closely watched than ever.

But the big news out of the fest was Michelle Yeoh’s announcement at a press conference that she’s planning to work with John Woo on another kung fu pic. The tentatively titled “The Sword and the Martial Arts World” will begin shooting in China in September, she said, with Taiwanese Su Chao-pin (“Silk”) co-directing.

“Original,” which tells the story of the son of a mentally ill mother, is a debut feature by Antonio Tublen and Alexander Brondsted. Jury prexy Danny Boyle described it as “a light, touching and subversive study of mental illness that is both compassionate and never sentimental.”

As he accepted the award, Gudnason said, “This is the best thing that anyone has ever given to me, and it’s going to keep me going on.”

The jury said “this young actor’s brilliant, sensitive and humorous performance is absolutely mesmerizing.”

Andie MacDowell, who presented Tang with the actress award for “Aching Hearts,” about the relationship of two high school sweethearts, called her performance “beautiful.”

Julius Sevcik took the director trophy for the Czech film “Normal,” the study of a serial killer in the 1930s.

Christina Yao Shuhua’s joint mainland China/Hong Kong/Taiwan co-production “Empire of Silver,” which tells the story of the scion of a banking empire in 19th century China and features Hong Kong star Aaron Kwok, took the jury prize, while Tibetan helmer Wanma Caidan’s “The Search” won the jury grand prize.

“This is a big honor especially because of the directors who are on the jury,” Sevcik said.

Organizers presented lifetime achievement awards to American music legend Quincy Jones and veteran French thesp Isabelle Huppert.

“I’m very, very proud of that. I intend to come back and back and back,” Jones said.

The Italian film “We Can Do That,” about a former businessman who manages a work cooperative staffed by mental patients, won best screenplay. France’s “Nowhere Promised Land” clinched the cinematography nod, and the South Korean drama “Rough Cut” was honored for music score.



Julius Sevcik, “Normal”

“We Can Do That”

Wanma Caidan’s “The Search”

Sverrir Gudnason, “Original”

Simone Tang, “Aching Hearts”

“Empire of Silver”

“Rough Cut”

“Nowhere Promised Land”

Quincy Jones
Isabelle Huppert

(Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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