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A look at a big year for ‘Parasite’

Feb 08,2020
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Bong Joon-ho’s sensational comedy “Parasite,” nominated in six categories, including Best Picture, at the upcoming Oscars, has been invited to 57 film festivals and award events across the world and collected 55 trophies, production company CJ ENM said Friday.

In May last year, the film about class division through two extreme families took home the Palme d’Or prize at the Cannes Film Festival, becoming a massive hit in 2019 and starting its award-winning streak.

A month later, it won the top prize at the 2019 Sydney Film Festival, while actor Song Kang-ho, who played the father of a down-and-out family in the film, received the Excellence Award at this year’s Locarno International Film Festival in Switzerland in August.

It also received awards at film festivals in North America, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, including the Calgary International Film Festival in Canada, Ulaanbaatar International Film Festival in Mongolia and the Slemani International Film Festival in Iraq.

Since it was released stateside in October, “Parasite” has received rave reviews and critical acclaim from film critics in the United States.

Entering the U.S. awards season in the run-up to the Oscars, it nearly swept top prizes like best picture, best screenplay and best foreign language film given by local critics associations, including those in Los Angeles, Chicago, Toronto and San Diego.

In 2020, “Parasite” continued its bullish rally. It took Best Foreign Language Film at the Golden Globes, marking the first Korean film to win an award at the event arranged by the Hollywood Foreign Press Association.

Days later, it earned six nods at this year’s Oscars in Best Picture, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Editing, Best Production Design and Best International Feature Film.

At the Screen Actors Guild Awards, the film became the first non-English language movie to win the top honor of Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture, following two titles at the Critics’ Choice Awards.

Director Bong received the Best Original Screenplay award at both the Writers Guild of America Awards and the British Academy of Film and Television Arts Awards.

As “Parasite” has raked in a series of major titles in key awards considered strong indicators of the Academy Awards slated for Sunday, the best picture category is regarded as a battle between “Parasite” and “1917,” the World War I movie by Sam Mendes.

The 92nd Academy Awards, given annually by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, will take place at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday (U.S. time).

After the ceremony, cable channel OCN will air a documentary titled “Bong Joon-ho, a genre unto himself” (translated) on Monday at 8 p.m. The program will discuss not only “Parasite” but other films by the director, such as “Memoirs of a Murder” (2003), “The Host” (2006) and “Snowpiercer” (2013).

By Lee Jae-lim, Yonhap