Singapore’s Yeo Yann Yann scores award at “The Oscars of Asia” – 8th Asian Film Awards

The 8th Asian Film Awards (AFA) award ceremony, dubbed the “Asian Oscars”, was held on Friday night at the House of Dancing Water Theatre in the City of Dreams, Macau. The 8th AFA was jointly organized by the AFA academy (AFAA) and its constituent partners – Busan Film Festival, Tokyo Film Festival and Hong Kong Film Festival.

Yeo Yann Yann won the Best Supporting Actress title for her role in the film Ilo Ilo against other strong contenders. Yeo’s success at the 8th AFA adds to her already outstanding number of illustrious awards she has won for her role in the film. “In modern life, when we encounter a lot of difficulties, our family members give us the biggest strength. So I hope you all can have this strength,” she said as she expressed her thanks, especially to her husband.

Singapore’s director Anthony Chen also scored a Best Director nomination with his story of a humble Singaporean family in his first feature film Ilo Ilo. This nomination bodes well for the future of Singaporean cinema in the international arena.

The Grandmaster walked away with the most awards this evening, bagging seven awards: Best Film, Best Director for Wong Kar Wai, Best Actress award for Zhang Ziyi, Best Production Designer and Costume Designer for William Chang Suk Ping, and Best Cinematographer for Phillipe Le Sourd.

zhang ziyi
Zhang Ziyi, Wong Kar-wai (Photo: Reuters)

In her speech, actress Zhang Ziyi spoke of one of the martial arts directors that was on the MH370, the missing Malaysian flight. Director Wong Kar Wai received the Best Film award on behalf of the crew and dedicated his speech to the missing director. He offered his deepest condolences and called on the Malaysian government for more transparency in clarifying the situation soon.

Hou Hsiao-Hsien poses after winning the Lifetime Achievement Award at the 8th Asian Film Awards in Macau
Taiwanese director Hao Hsiao-hsien won lifetime achievement award. Photo: Reuters

Amidst a standing ovation, Taiwanese actor Hou Hsiao Hsien received the top honour of Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contribution to Asian cinema throughout his 30 year career. “I’m receiving this award because I am an old man,” he joked. He expressed that he is motivated to continue making new films.

Irrfan Khan, lead actor of Indian romance film The Lunchbox, beat other nominees for the Best Actor award (including Tony Leung and Lee Kang Sheng) to win the award. “I’m honoured and delighted that I have been nominated with such great actors, actors which I’ve watched and which I’m in love with,” he said.

Isabelle Huppert, one of Europe’s top actresses, was named as the first honorary member of the AFAA. Top French fashion designer agnès b of her self-named label presented the Best Costume Designer and Best Production Designer Awards at the AFA award ceremony.

List of winners:

  • Lifetime Achievement: Hou Hsiao-Hsien
  • Best Film: The Grandmaster
  • Best Director: Wong Kar-wai, The Grandmaster
  • Best Actor: Irrfan Khan, The Lunchbox
  • Best Actress: Zhang Ziyi, The Grandmaster
  • Best Newcomer: Jiang Shuying, So Young
  • Best Supporting Actor: Huang Bo, No Man’s Land
  • Best supporting actress: Yeo Yann Yann, Ilo Ilo
  • Best Screenwriter: Ritesh Batra, The Lunchbox
  • Best Cinematographer: Philippe Le Sourd, The Grandmaster
  • Best Production Designer: William Chang Suk Ping, Alfred Yau Wai Ming, The Grandmaster
  • Best Composer: Nathaniel Mechaly, Umebayashi Shigeru, The Grandmaster
  • Best Editor: Shin Min-kyung, Cold Eyes
  • Best Visual Effects: Jung Sung-jin, Mr Go
  • Best Costume designer: William Chang Suk Ping, The Grandmaster


About Asian Film Awards

The annual Asian Film Awards was established in 2007 as the first awards to recognize cinematic talents across Asia. The only awards ceremony in the world that brings together the region’s cinematic elites, the AFA has garnered well-deserved attention from both industry professionals and movie fans alike.

This year’s Asian Film Awards spanned 12 industry experts on the jury, 73 nominations, 26 films, and 14 award categories from 13 countries. The awards were jointly organised by the powerhouses of Asian cinema, comprising of the AFA Academy and its constituent partners – Busan International Film Festival, Hong Kong Film Festival Society and Tokyo International Film Festival.

The AFA strives to promote cultural exchange between film professionals from all across Asia with the ambition of propelling Asian films to greater heights.

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