You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Asian Film Awards to Relocate From Hong Kong to Busan

The Asian Film Awards are to relocate from their current home in Hong Kong to Busan.

The glitzy red carpet event will also shift from March, when it usually coincides with the Hong Kong film festival and the FilMart rights market, to October, to align with the Busan International Film Festival. The next edition will be held in October 2020.

The change was announced Friday evening in Busan. Organizers were at pains to explain that the exit from Hong Kong was not connected to the current civilian unrest in the city.

The Asian Film Awards were initially founded under the wing of the HKIFF Society, with the first edition taking place in 2007 at the Hong Kong Convention Centre. Later, the awards became a three-way joint venture with the Busan and Tokyo festivals, while still retaining its legal base in Hong Kong, where it has charity status. The current general manager of the AFAs will remain based in Hong Kong, but will begin cooperation with the Busan festival on the 14th edition in October next year.

The three partners had previously discussed rotating the event to the other festival cities – the AFAs have been held in Macau twice – but plans hatched in 2013 to make the move to Busan foundered. The Busan festival encountered a period of severe political and financial problems following the 2014 screening of “Diving Bell” (aka “The Truth Shall Not Sink With Sewol”) and the exit of festival head Lee Yong-kwan. Normality in Busan has only recently been restored.

Popular on Variety

“This move was initiated by the Busan and Tokyo festivals, which have now said that they are finally ready to take on the responsibility of hosting the awards,” HKIFF Society chairman Wilfred Wong told Variety.

The move creates an 18-month gap between the March 2019 edition in Hong Kong and the October 2020 edition of the AFAs in Busan. Wong said that organizers aim to put on a small event in Hong Kong in March 2020, potentially a lifetime achievement award, to maintain the brand.

The shift in dates also potentially sets up a clash with the Asia Pacific Screen Awards, which are held in November and take place in Brisbane, Australia. Both AFAs and APSA have set up academies, which create the loyalty and ongoing involvement of leading talent and past prize winners.

The partners have also discussed a further, future rotation of the Asian Film Awards to Tokyo. But no decision has been taken as to when that might happen.

More Film

  • My Zoe

    'My Zoe': Film Review

    There are two films in Julie Delpy’s ambitious, sharply-made but unbalanced “My Zoe.” There’s the scabrous relationship melodrama, about bitter exes sharing custody of a beloved child, which contains the story’s most potent emotions. And there’s the sci-fi-inflected ethical-dilemma grief movie, which houses its most provocative ideas. Both have much to recommend them, not least [...]

  • Richard Jewell

    The Big Lie of 'Richard Jewell' (Column)

    For a man who was so enraged at the administration of Barack Obama that he spent his 2012 Republican Convention speech lecturing an empty chair, Clint Eastwood has made a number of conventional, level-headed — one might even say liberal — political dramas. Films like “Invictus” and “J. Edgar” and “Midnight in the Garden of [...]

  • Oscar Isaac Star Wars The Rise

    Oscar Isaac Has Never Felt Like a 'Star Wars' Insider

    Unlike his “Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker” co-stars Daisy Ridley and John Boyega, Oscar Isaac had already established a long and acclaimed acting career before J.J. Abrams cast him as ace X-wing pilot Poe Dameron in 2015’s “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” including standout roles in 2006’s “The Nativity Story” and 2011’s “Drive,” and [...]

  • Les Arcs to Showcase New Projects

    Les Arcs to Showcase New Projects by Jonas Alexander Arnby, Agnieszka Smoczyńska

    Denmark’s Jonas Alexander Arnby, France’s Alain Gagnol and Jean-Loup Felicioli, and Poland’s Agnieszka Smoczyńska are among up-and-coming directors from across Europe whose latest projects will be presented at the 11th Coproduction Village of Les Arcs Film Festival. This edition of Les Arcs Coproduction Village will showcase a total of 22 European projects spanning 19 countries. [...]

  • Chez Jolie Coiffure

    'Chez Jolie Coiffure': Film Review

    Shortly before the credits roll on “Chez Jolie Coiffure,” a customer in the eponymous hair salon asks her stylist, Sabine, if she has any plans to go home this year. Out of context, this sounds like the kind of standard, empty small talk one often makes while having one’s hair cut: what good movies you’ve [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content