Lee Byung Hun Wins 'Best Actor' Award for "Masquerade"

Lee Byung Hun Wins 'Best Actor' Award for "Masquerade"

Lee Byung Hun Wins Best Actor Award for MasqueradeLee Byung Hun was recently awarded the Best Actor Awardat the 7th Asia Pacific Screen Awards (APSA) for his performance in the movie Masquerade. This was the actors first international best actor award.

The 7th APSA was held on December 12 in Brisburn, Australia. Lee Byung Hun was unable to attend the award ceremony, and the Real Eyes production companys director Won Dong Yeon accepted the award on Lee Byung Huns behalf.

Lee Byung Hun brought one million to the theaters for Masquerade, and in addition to winning the best actor award at the Grand Bell Awards this year, the actor solidified his position as a truly talented actor once again.

There were other Korean works that won awards that night, as well.

Director Kang Yi Kwans Juvenile Offender (2012) won the grand award for the youth category at APSA, continuing the train of awards at the international film festival by Korean films.

The CEO of Cine2000, which produced The Terror Live, also won the International Federation of Film Producers Association Award (FIAPF Award) at the ceremony, which is awarded to production companies that have achieved an exceptional amount.


Jaejoong's "Jackal" and Lee Byung Hun's "Masquerade" Are Most Watched Korean Movies in Japan in 2013 So Far

Jaejoong's "Jackal" and Lee Byung Hun's "Masquerade" Are Most Watched Korean Movies in Japan in 2013 So Far

Jaejoongs Jackal and Lee Byung Huns Masquerade Are Most Watched Korean Movies in Japan in 2013 So FarAccording to the Hallyu magazine Its Koreal, Lee Byung Huns most recent film, Masquerade, and JYJ Jaejoongs Jackal is Coming top the list of  the highest grossing Korean movies that premiered in Japan in the first half of 2013. Masquerade was first with Jackal is Comingat second.

In Masquerade, actor Lee Byung Hun played the dual role of Prince Gwanghae and  his double, the peasant Ha Sun. The movie was a hit in South Korea when it was released in 2012, recording over 12 million tickets sold.

Jackal is Coming was Jaejoongs first leading movie, starring alongside actress Song Ji Hyo. He played a top Hallyu star, who becomes the target of assination by Song Ji Hyo. 

Filling out the list of the top ten is Kim Soo Hyuns Thieves, Joo Ji Hoons I Am King, Lee Hong Kis Passionate Goodbye, So Ji Subs Salaryman, Song Joong Kis A Werewolf Boy, Hyun Bins Come Rain, Come Shine, Park Shi Hoos Confession of Murder, and Rains R2B: Return to Base.


"Miracle in Cell No.7" jumps over "Masquerade"

Movie "Miracle in Cell No.7" is about to beat "Masquerade".

According to the Film Commissions Statistics, "Miracle in Cell No.7" is second in the box office with 34,677 audiences in just 4 days. The accumulated number adds up to 12,279,538.

"Miracle in Cell No.7" has caught up with "Taegukgi" which was fifth in the box office and "The King and the Clown" which is fourth in place. "Miracle in Cell No.7" is now about to catch up with "Masquerade".

"Miracle in Cell No.7" will then be in the TOP 3 ranking of Korean movies.

"Miracle in Cell No.7" is the eighth movie in Korea to have made over 10 million viewers including, "Silmido", "Taegukgi", "The King and the Clown", "The Host", "Haeundae", "The Thieves" and "Masquerade". It is also the first human comedy to be ranked in the top line and holds a record of the highest profits as well as the same actor from another 10 million viewer movie.

"Miracle in Cell No.7" is only beat by "The Host" and "The Thieves" at the moment.


"Masquerade" bound to be a hit in Japan

"Masquerade" which drew more than 12 million viewers in Korea signaled a hit in Japan as well.

The movie which was released in Japan with the name "The Man Who Became King" was seen by 42 thousand people in over 90 theaters on the 16th. It is one of 10 ranking movies that was released in Japan. It's been a long time since a Korean movie took to top 10 ranking in Japan.

According to a movie information site, "The Man Who Became King" exceeded several movies in terms of satisfaction and came in first.

Even in an exit poll, it was evaluated, "Lee Byeong-Heon's double role was so real he seemed like a different person. It was amazing", "It was his best act yet", "There were many relating factors along with laughter and inspiration" and more.

Meanwhile, Lee Byeong-Heon's "G.I. Joe: Retaliation" is being released worldwide on the 28th of March.


Masquerade exceeds 40,000 viewers in a week in Japan

Masquerade exceeds 40,000 viewers in a week in Japan

Masquerade exceeds 40,000 viewers in a week in Japan The movie Masquerade, starring actor Lee Byung Heon, was released in Japan and had a good start.

According to Lees agency, BH Entertainment, on February 19, the movie was released in Japan on February 16 in ninety theaters and drew around 42,000 viewers.

This record helped the movie rank tenth at box office. An official for the agency says, The Korean movie has entered the Top 10 list at the box office after a long time. It drew a lot of attention in Japan and received many favorable reviews.

According to a Japanese film website, the movie beat many other Japanese movies and ranked first in the satisfaction category.

Thanks to the successful movie, it will be made into a play with another ending and story in Korea. The play will start performing on February 23.

Now Lee is preparing for the world wide release of G.I. Joe: Retaliation on March 28.

Source: Starnews


Lee Byung Hun Would

Lee Byung Hun Would"ve Done theButt Dance from "Masquerade" at the "Daejong Film Festival"

Lee Byung Hun said he was sad he wasn′t able to receive his award at the Daejong Film Awards in person.

On December 12 Lee Byung Hun attended the special press conference for G.I. Joe 2 held in Hong Kong.

On the day of the Daejong Film Awards, Lee Byung Hun had been filming Red 2 in London. At the Awards, he had won the Best Actor Award for his feats in Masquerade, and his agency rep Son Seok Woo had instead acccepted the award. Masquerade received many more awards this day, including the Best Film, Director and Best Supporting Actor award.

"I was taking a break that day because I had no filming schedules," he said. "I was so happy after I heard I had won. If I had been there, I wouldn′t have had much to show, but I believe I would′ve danced the butt dance that Ha Sun dances in Masquerade."

"More than 12 million people have seen Masquerade. I want to use this opportunity to thank them," he said.

Masquerade is still in theaters after premiering in September 13. Up to December 12, it has gathered 12.3 million people, landing on no. 3 as the most successful Korean film in Korean film history following The Thieves and The Host.

G.I. Joe 2 will premiere in America and Korea in March 2013.

Photo credit: CJ EM

Reach reporter Oh MiJung on Twitter @isyutar!


2PM hits #1 on Japan’s Tower Records singles chart for 2 weeks with Masquerade

2PM hits #1 on Japan’s Tower Records singles chart for 2 weeks with Masquerade

2PM hits #1 on Japans Tower Records singles chart for 2 weeks with “Masquerade”

2PMs popularity in Japan has been proved once again!

The boy group has ranked #1 on Japan’s Tower Records single sales chart for two consecutive weeks with their 5th single “Masquerade”.

“Masquerade” was released on November 14th and it quickly became the best-selling single of the week.

The single is expected to break the record of 2PM’s 4th single “Beautiful” to become the most selling single in the history of Japan’s Tower Records’ Shibuya branch.

Congratulations to 2PM!

2PM hits #1 on Japans Tower Records singles chart for 2 weeks with “Masquerade”


'Masquerade' unmasks film industry schism

'Masquerade' unmasks film industry schism

'Masquerade' unmasks film industry schism

* This is the first of a two-part series dealing with the state of Korea's film industry, which is enjoying its most successful year ever with ticket sales of more than 100 million. The first part explores the controversy surrounding film awards, and the second will investigate the role of conglomerates.

It should have been a big night for this year's hit movie "Masquerade" when the costume drama - also known as "Gwanghae"- swooped up 15 of 22 prizes at the 49th Daejong Film Awards last month.

Instead of putting the spotlight on Korea's most honored feature film ever, "Masquerade's" domination raises the question of whether making movies in Korea has become too much about money and not enough about art and created an environment stacked against small, independent producers.

In Daejong, the carnival atmosphere was cut short when this year's Gold Lion award-winning director Kim Ki-duk walked out after the first segment. Although he didn't say precisely why he left, many assume Kim might have felt uncomfortable with the number of awards handed to a blockbuster with a 9 billion won ($8.3 million) budget and the disregard for high quality, low-funded films.

One of jury members scrambled up to the stage in the middle of the show and explained how the screening process works, emphasizing the transparency of the voting system.

The official awards Web site crashed the next day under a spike in traffic, most likely from disgruntled film fans.

"I am not saying "Masquerade" is a poor movie. It has remarkable elements that can appeal to both critics and moviegoers", says Sim Young-seop, a film critic and counseling psychology professor at Daegu Cyber University. "The question is whether "Masquerade" is exceptional enough to sweep 70 percent of the awards, something even 'Ben-Hur' and 'Titanic' couldn't do. The answer is no".

No one can deny that "Masquerade" is a success: the Joseon Dynasty palace saga generated box office sales of more than 10 million.

After the incident in Daejong, all eyes this Friday will be on the Blue Dragon Awards, where the list of nominees is already stirring controversy: "Masquerade" is nominated in 10 categories and "Pieta" in three.

At the heart of the issue at Daejong is not only "Masquerade", but other nominees that were passed over. The results left many with misgivings about whether Choo Chang-min's latest film deserves to overshadow the many productions this year that critics say deserve to be recognized.

"2012 was a rich year for Korea's movie industry. There were lots of box-office hits with great artistic and social value", says critic Kwak Young-jin. "For example, 'Unbowed' and "Nameless Gangster" conveyed profound social messages and were superbly entertaining, with interesting stories and appealing actors. But they received no awards, which I think is nonsense".

"Unbowed", by veteran director Chung Ji-young, is a compelling story of a demoted college professor who fights Korea's justice system, while Yoon Jong-bin's "Nameless Gangster" addresses the issue of rampant corruption in 1980s Korea by replicating a grim world where corruption seeped into every corner of society.

'Masquerade' unmasks film industry schism

Box office sales were 3.46 million for "Unbowed" and 4.6 million for "Nameless Gangster", according to the Korean Film Council's database. That puts them among the top 10 Korean movies at the box office this year.

Yet the most egregious slight award should go to Kim Ki-duk's "Pieta", a mother and son drama that marries sexual and religious themes to pose serious moral questions. "Pieta" took top prize at the 69th Venice Film Festival this year and has been selected as Korea's entry to the 85th Academy Awards foreign film section.

"What really went wrong in Daejong was the jury members' disregard for "Pieta". The film is a piece that should be remembered in Korea's movie history for its cinematic quality and artistic value, but it only received Best Actress and the Special Jury Award", says Kwak.

"There had been no Special Jury Award for two years. And I think jury members hastily made the decision to award "Pieta" because there would have been much more backlash if it won nothing", he said.

In Kim Ki-duk's absence, Kim Soon-mo, producer of "Pieta", accepted the Special Jury Award on behalf of the director, who he said left early because he didn't "feel well".

Producer Kim later tweeted that "I have nothing to say today. It will live in my memory for a long time. I will just do my best".

Filmmaker Kim Jho Kwang-soo made scathing criticisms via Twitter, saying that "Daejong is still held. But thoughtful film professionals actually don't pay attention to that because the awards always stir debate over fairness every year. It is shameful to make such controversial awards".

Producer Kim re-tweeted the comment.

The sheer number of awards that went to "Masquerade" - best director, editing, screenplay, cinematography, costumes, music, design and lighting, among others - created a rather awkward and chilly atmosphere throughout the presentations.

Finally, the chief judge, ironically named Kim Ki-deok, 78, went to the podium during the show to explain in detail how the selection process was carried out.

"We believe there will be suspicions over why the awards have been given to one piece", he said. "We used to judge each film and then compare each area, but this week, whenever the screening of a film ended, we put down our scores, sealed the envelopes and kept them in a safe.

"Even I, the judge for the ceremony, didn't know this would yield such results. Since we didn't get to compare, we didn't know which piece would be winning which award. We hope you understand".

The Daejong Film Awards has experienced grumbling, moaning and gnashing of teeth over decisions almost every year, and the elimination of discussion was intended to emphasize objectivity.

"We thought that the discussion process would create rumors that the selection was influenced by power and subjectivity. That's why we didn't allocate time for discussion this year", says Chung Young-bae, director of the Daejong Film Awards.

Daejong organizers have become extremely sensitive about the backlash with its history of being severely criticized.

In 1996, Kim Ho-seon's "Henequen", which had not hit theaters prior to the ceremony, won the award for Best Director, while "Heaven and Sea" was nominated in four categories in 2009 despite being never shown in theaters.

The organizer of the awards ceremony adopted the new screening rule this year by appointing 54 ordinary citizens of different age groups and professions, on top of the existing 14 judges, in an attempt to enhance fairness and acknowledge diverse opinions.

These citizen judges chose short-listed nominees for each category and then the 14 judges scored every entry on a scale of five to 10 without sharing notes or discussion. The nominated films that garnered the highest total win.

Some observers blame the new voting system for leaning too much toward one film.

"Discussion and adjustment are essential for film awards to avoid biased results. The unconvincing result is triggered by the absence of that process, " says Sim, the critic and professor.

Many international film festivals, including Venice, have a tacit rule in which a single movie is not allowed to sweep a majority of awards.

Others point out that a more fundamental problem lies in who is on the 14-member jury.

"Most of the judges are in their 60s and 70s. The weighted age bracket is likely to bring more conforming and conservative decisions", says film critic Kwak.

Leading jurors included the 78-year-old director Kim Ki-deok (not of "Pieta"), 72-year-old actor Kim Yeong-in and 81-year-old filmmaker Kim Young-hyo.

Kwak also raises the issue of whom the jurors represent.

"The selected jurors need to be the best people to represent their fields or associations. The two movie critics invited as judges this year were not ones recommended by the Korean Association of Film Critics", he says.

"This kind of issue will make people have doubts about the transparency of the film ceremony".

The organizers of the Korea's oldest film awards acknowledge the criticism.

"We tried to choose more experienced industry people and this is why the age range of judges is a bit high. But we had Kang Mi-ra, a film professor in her 40s, and we plan to draw more young professionals who have different opinions", says Chung, director of the Daejong.

"But I can't agree with the accusation that those who decided the winners tend to be conservative. We asked people from the Korean Film Production Association to come in. The association is considered quite liberal", he says.

Chung adds that the Daejong will bring in experts at different levels in the art and culture fields for next year and release transcripts of jury meetings.

"We tried to release the transcripts 20 years ago. But people were opposed because of sensitivity. But for transparency, we are driving the plan for next year. This shows how much we are determined to keep high level of transparency and fairness, " Chung says.

Despite such efforts, this year's ceremony exposed the weaknesses and lack of confidence within the Daejong organization itself.

"We cannot say the voting system is wrong, because they try to enhance fairness. But all this controversy shows how vulnerable the show is", says Kwak. "They eliminated discussion, which is an important part of the process, in an attempt to avoid any backlash".

By Park Eun-jee


2PM rank second on the Oricon with Masquerade

2PM rank second on the Oricon with Masquerade

2PM rank second on the Oricon with Masquerade 2PM recently proved their high popularity in Japan.

According to the Oricon Chart issued on November 21, 2PMs fifth single, Masquerade, ranked second on the Weekly Chart.

2PM have sold over 130,000 copies of the single in the first week of the release. This is the second highest sales volume for the group after that of the single Beautiful, which sold over 140,000 copies.

T-aras Sexy Love also received a lot of attention. It sold over 40,000 copies and ranked fourth on the Oricon Weekly Chart.

KARA ranked second on the Album Chart, and the Wonder Girls ranked 32nd on the Best Album Chart.

Besides, KARA ranked first and Infinite ranked fifth and sixth on the DVD Chart.

Source: Starnews


2PM hits #1 on Tower Records chart in Japan with Masquerade

2PM hits #1 on Tower Records chart in Japan with Masquerade

2PM hits #1 on Tower Records chart in Japan with “Masquerade”

After ranking at #2 place on Oricon‘s daily single chart, boy group 2PM has recently hit #1 on Tower Records‘ reservation sales chart with their fifth Japanese single ‘Masquerade‘.

‘Masquerade’ reached #1, #2, and #3 on Tower Records sales charts on November 13th and 14th, raking 1st place for two consecutive days.

In addition, the single album previously hit #1 on Japan’s Recochoku ringtone chart.

The song “Masquerade” was partly a work of Japanese composer NA.ZU.NA who had worked with top Japanese artists including Arashi, Koda Kumi, and SMAP.

Congratulations to 2PM!

2PM hits #1 on Tower Records chart in Japan with “Masquerade”