At this year’s Baeksang Arts Awards, the Netflix sensation “Squid Game” and director Ryoo Seung-wan of the period action thriller “Mogadishu” won grand prizes.
On Friday night, the 58th awards ceremony at the Korea International Exhibition Center in Goyang, just northwest of Seoul, honoured Netflix’s South Korean original series and Ryoo in the TV and film categories, respectively.
The most noticeable feature of this year’s event was the progress made by the streaming service’s original series in the TV section.
“Squid Game” won three awards, including best director and grand prize. “D.P.”, a military drama, also won three awards: best drama, best supporting actor, and best new actor.
Best screenplay and best supporting actress went to “Juvenile Justice” and director Yeon Sang-dystopian ho’s horror “Hellbound,” respectively.
“Squid Game,” directed and written by Hwang Dong-hyuk, is about contestants competing in lethal Korean children’s playground games for a chance to win 45.6 billion won (US$38.2 million). With more than 1.65 billion hours of viewing in the first four weeks after its release on Sept. 17, the nine-part series became Netflix’s most successful TV show ever.
During the 1991 civil war in Somalia, diplomats from the South and North Korean missions collaborated to flee the country.
In her acceptance speech, Kim Ji-yeon, CEO of the Netflix show’s production company Siren Pictures, said, “We didn’t have the confidence that it could go out to the world.” “I pray for hope and courage for everyone in the content industry.”
Hwang expressed his gratitude to Netflix and Kim on stage after winning best director.
“Thank you Netflix for investing without hesitation in the difficult-to-make project, and CEO Kim for encouraging me by saying after reading the screenplay that it is for global viewers, not just domestic viewers.”
He also stated that he has begun writing Season 2 and that he will return with a good show in a few years. “Mogadishu” and the political drama “Kingmaker” dominated the film category, each taking home three awards.
“It’s embarrassing to receive the grand prize in my name rather than a movie’s,” Ryoo said after accepting the trophy for the top prize. “I’m grateful to the crew who worked with me and the actors who relied on me and stuck by me in such a difficult filming environment.”
The Baeksang Arts Awards, founded in 1965, are one of South Korea’s most prestigious entertainment award shows, encompassing TV, film, and theatre.
The annual ceremony returned to an in-person format this year, after being held without an audience for the previous two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic.