Biz vets to receive kudos at Asian Cinema Awards

Two of the giants of Asian cinema will be honored with major kudos at the Hong Kong Film Festival today — Pusan Film Festival founding director Kim Dong-ho and Hong Kong pioneer Raymond Chow.

Kim draws the award for outstanding contribution to Asian Cinema at the fest’s fifth Asian Film Awards, while Chow, active in the Golden Age of Hong Kong film, will receive the lifetime achievement nod.

Kim co-founded the Pusan fest (now known as the Busan Film Festival), in 1996 and during his tenure has done much to champion Asian talent with initiatives such as the New Currents Competition, the Pusan Promotion Plan and the Asian Cinema Fund. He retired last year but remains fest’s honorary director.

“From his time at the Ministry of Culture and Information and the Korean Motion Picture Promotion Corporation to the years shepherding the Pusan Intl. Film Festival, (Kim) is known as the face of Korea’s film industry. As such, the AFA would like to honor Mr. Kim for his dedication and his passion for cinema throughout the years,” said Wilfred Wong, chairman of the Hong Kong Intl. Film Festival Society, the organizer of the AFA.

Chow guided the careers of some of Asia’s biggest names, including Bruce Lee and Jackie Chan.

He began at Shaw Brothers studio in 1958, rising to head of production. He left in 1970 to co-found production-distrib Golden Harvest. Chow retired in 2007.

In addition to the 14 individual awards, this year’s AFA will present four special awards to recognize the outstanding efforts and careers of film professionals and companies in the Asian film industry.

The AFA ceremony takes place at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center.

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