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(LEAD) Korean director Hong Sang-soo wins grand jury prize for 'The Novelist's Film' at Berlin film fest

Movies 06:19 February 17, 2022

By Kim Boram
(ATTN: ADDS more comments in paras 7-10, new photo)

SEOUL, Feb. 17 (Yonhap) -- South Korean director Hong Sang-soo on Thursday (Korean time) won the grand jury prize at this year's Berlin International Film Festival for his latest film, "The Novelist's Film."

At the award ceremony streamed online, the director's 27th feature was awarded the Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize at the 72nd Berlin festival, which kicked off on Feb. 10 in-person.

It is the third year in a row that auteur Hong has won a silver bear prize at the Berlinale, following his best director honor for the drama "The Woman Who Ran" in 2020 and the best screenplay prize for "Introduction" last year.

"I really didn't expect this big prize. I'm very surprised. Thank you all the jury member for your appreciation," the director said in an acceptance speech. "I feel like I should say something more but I don't know what to say. I will just keep on doing what I've been doing."

Starring Lee Hye-young and Kim Min-hee, the 92-minute movie tells a story of a famous novelist who encounters a famous actress and shares some feelings about art and filmmaking.

Director Hong not only wrote and directed the screenplay but also filmed and edited the movie.

In this AFP photo, South Korean director Hong Sang-soo speaks after winning the Silver Bear Grand Jury for the film "The Novelist's Film" during the awards ceremony of the 72nd Berlinale Film Festival in Berlin on Feb. 16, 2022. (Yonhap)

He accepted the prize with lead actress Kim Min-hee, known to be in an extramarital relationship with the director.

"I felt that people love this film so much during the premier, but I didn't say thank you," she said in Korean. "It was touching and I will never forget the moment. Thank you very much."

The jury chaired by M. Night Shyamalan said "The Novelist's Film" opens a "limitless realm of imagination" through its mastery of simplicity.

"By pushing time and space to their extreme limits, time becomes faith and space becomes the universe," it said. "In a shared society, which seems to only expand materially, this film's achievement gives us courage to change our values."

This image provided by the 72nd Berlin International Film Festival highlights "The Novelist's Film" awarded Silver Bear Grand Jury Prize. (PHOTO NOT FOR SALE) (Yonhap)

The top Golden Bear for Best Film went to "Alcarras" by Carla Simon, while "Robe of Gems" by Natalia Lopez Gallardo won the Silver Bear Jury Prize

German writer Laila Stieler won the Silver Bear for Best Screenplay for "Rabiye Kurnaz vs George W. Bush" and French filmmaker Claire Denis of "Fire" was awarded best director.


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