Port of Call, directed by Philip
Courtesy of HKIFF

Hong Kong has selected crime drama “Port of Call” as its contender in the foreign-language Oscars category. Highly acclaimed locally, it beat the territory’s recently crowned box office champion “The Mermaid.”

The film was set as the opening film of the 2015 Hong Kong International Film Festival and had its commercial release several months later in December. Through 2015 and 2016 it made a host of festival appearances and amassed an impressive haul of awards for actors Aaron Kwok, Michael Ning and emerging new actress Jessie Li at the Asian Film Awards,Hong Kong Film Awards and the Golden Horse Awards. There were also prizes for William Chang Suk-ping and his editing team, and for director-screenwriter Philip Yung.

The selection was announced by the Motion Picture Industry Association on Thursday. The organization revealed that other shortlisted titles had included Benny Chan’s “Call of Heroes,” Stephen Chow’s “The Mermaid,” Chan Chi-fat’s baseball drama “Weeds on Fire,” and Steve Yuen Kim-wai’s “Heaven in the Dark.”

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