Ryuji Otsuka, Huang Ji

Source: Golden Horse Film Festival

‘Stonewalling’ co-director Ryuji Otsuka and Huang Ji

China-set drama Stonewalling, directed by husband-and-wife team Huang Ji and Ryuji Otsuka, won best narrative feature at the 60th Golden Horse Awards in Taiwan on Saturday (November 25).

Taiwanese family drama Old Fox won the most awards on the night, including best director for Hsiao Ya-chuan, best supporting actor for veteran Akio Chen, makeup and costume design, and best film score.

Scroll down for full list of winners

Mainland Chinese director Huang and Japan’s Otsuka were in attendance at Taipei’s National Dr Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall to receive the top prize from Mark Lee Ping-bing, renowned cinematographer and Golden Horse Awards chairman, and Ang Lee who served as this year’s jury president.

Stonewalling also won best editing for veteran Taiwanese editor Liao Ching-sung and Otsuka. Liao received a standing ovation from the audience when accepting the award, which marks his first win after more than a dozen nominations over 46 years.

Huang and Otsuka are based in Japan and Stonewalling is labelled as a Japanese production, but it marks the first win of a feature directed by a mainland Chinese director since 2018 when the late Hu Bo’s An Elephant Sitting Still won best narrative feature.

Stonewalling is the final film in a trilogy that depicts the hardships of young Chinese women, following Egg And Stone and Foolish Bird. It was shot on a small budget with a crew of no more than five on set, with Otsuka doubling as director of photography and production designer.

Old Fox, which surprised many when not nominated for best film, scooped four awards. Executive produced by Hou Hsiao-Hsien, the Taiwanese family drama is set in the 1980s and follows the unlikely friendship between an 11-year-old boy and his landlord, nicknamed Old Fox.

The best actor award went to Taiwan’s Wu Kang-ren for his performance as a mute Malaysian odd-job worker who barely makes ends meet in Abang Adik, while 12-year-old Audrey Lin was crowned best actress for Trouble Girl, making her the youngest ever winner of the award. Yu Jing-pin also made Golden Horse history as the first woman to ever win best cinematography for Fish Memories.

While no one film dominated the awards, Hong Kong cinema was recognised. Nick Cheuk was named best new director for Time Still Turns The Pages, while Yoyo Tse took best new performer for Fly Me To The Moon. The short film and animated short film prizes also went to Hong Kong filmmakers.

Apart from Stonewalling, several mainland Chinese filmmakers were present, including best actress nominee Hu Ling of Carp Leaping Over Dragon’s Gate and the Badlands Film Group who won best documentary short film for The Memo.

Historical epic Snow In Midsummer by Malaysia’s Chong Keat-aun went into the night with a leading nine nominations but just secured one win for best sound effects.

After landing eight nominations apiece, Lin Chun-yang’s SARS drama Eye Of The Storm won two prizes for visual effects and arts direction, while Cheng Wei-hao’s ghost comedy Marry My Dead Body took just one award for adapted screenplay.

The award presenters were a mix from Taiwan and Hong Kong. Several high-profile presenters from Japan included Takeshi Kitano, Koji Yakusho, Satoshi Tsumbabuki and Hikari Mitsushima.

2023 Golden Horse Awards winners

Best Narrative Feature

Best Director
Hsiao Ya-chuan, Old Fox

Best New Director
Nick Cheuk, Time Still Turns The Pages

Best Leading Actor
Wu Kang-ren, Abang Adik

Best Leading Actress
Audrey Lin, Trouble Girl

Best Supporting Actor
Akio Chen, Old Fox

Best Supporting Actress
Beatrice Fang, Day Off

Best New Performer
Tse Wing-yan, Fly Me To The Moon

Best Original Screenplay
Sun Jie, The Mountain Is Coming

Best Adapted Screenplay
Wu Chin-jung, Cheng Wei-hao, Marry My Dead Body

Best Cinematography
Yu Jing-pin, Fish Memories

Best Visual Effects
ArChin Yen, Eye Of The Storm

Best Art Direction
Huang Mei-ching, Tu Shuo-feng, Eye Of The Storm

Best Makeup & Costume Design
Wang Chih-cheng, Shirley Kao, Old Fox

Best Action Choreography
Hung Shih-hao, The Pig, The Snake And The Pigeon

Best Film Editing
Liao Ching-sung, Otsuka Ryuji, Stonewalling

Best Sound Effects
Tu Duu-chih, Wu Shu-yao, Chen Kuan-ting, Snow In Midsummer

Best Original Film Score
Chris Hou, Old Fox

Best Original Film Song
“The Usual”, Day Off

Best Documentary Feature
Youth (Spring), dir. Wang Bing

Best Animated Feature
Pigsy, dir. Chiu Li-wei

Best Live Action Short Film
Before The Box Gets Emptied, dir. Ho Sze-wai

Best Documentary Short Film
The Memo, dir. Badlands Film Group

Best Animated Short Film
Monsoon Blue, dirs. Ellis Chan Ka-yin, Wong Hiu-kit

Outstanding Taiwanese Filmmaker of the Year
Lin Shih-ken

Lifetime Achievement Award
Brigitte Lin
Chen Kun-hou