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Asian Film Awards fete ‘Uncle’

Weerasethakul's Palme d'Or winner scoops best film

Thai helmer Apichatpong Weerasethakul’s Palme d’Or winner “Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives” notched its latest success Monday when it scooped the best film laurel at the fifth Asian Film Awards in Hong Kong.

It was a big night for South Korea: Lee Chang-dong won lead actor for “Poetry,” Ha Jung-woo took actress for “The Yellow Sea,” Yoon Yeo-jeong nabbed screenplay honors for “The Housemaid,” Lee Chang-dong took cinematographer laurels for “Poetry” while the visual effects kudos went to Nam Na-young for “I Saw the Devil.”

Mark Chao You-Ting won supporting actor honors for the Taiwanese hit “Monga,” while Sammo Hung Kam-po took the supporting actress award for “Ip Man 2.”

Best production designer was Mark Lee Ping-bin for “Norwegian Wood,” Hayashida Yuji won best music score for “13 Assassins,” best editing went to Peepli Live for “Indian Ocean,” while Phil Jones and Zhang Yanming took the visual effects award for “Aftershock.” Costume designer went to William Chang Suk-ping for “Let the Bullets Fly.”

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Chinese helmer Feng Xiaogang’s “Aftershock” was feted as top-grossing Asian film of 2010.

Fourteen awards and three special awards were presented at the ceremony, held at the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Center as part of the Hong Kong Film Festival.

Among biz figures who attended were Harvey Weinstein, Zhang Ziyi, Joan Chen, Barney Cheng, Chow Yun-fat, Kim Tae-hun and Xu Fan, who nabbed the newcomer award for “Aftershock.”

As previously announced, Pusan Film Festival founding director Kim Dong-ho received the contribution to Asian cinema award, while Hong Kong film pioneer Raymond Chow took the lifetime achievement award.

The Hong Kong Film Festival Society gave a special award to Hong Kong- and Amsterdam-based Fortissimo Films for its promotion of Asian cinema. Accepted by chairman Michael J. Werner, kudo recognized the company’s contribution to the Hong Kong-Asia Film Financing Forum, which gives an award every year to honor the memory of founder Wouter Barendrecht, who died in 2009.

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