Romantic comedy flick ‘Saigon, I Love You’ has beaten 18 contenders to win the top prize for feature films at the 2016 Golden Kite Awards, Vietnam’s equivalent of the Oscars.
First presented in 2003, the Golden Kite Awards (Canh dieu vang) are organized annually by the Vietnam Cinema Association to honor the country’s best motion pictures, television dramas and documentaries from the previous year.
This year’s awards ceremony was held on Sunday evening at the Ho Chi Minh City Military Theater, where the country’s top stars and filmmakers gathered to witness the honoring of 19 of the best Vietnamese films of 2016.
In the feature film category, the Golden Kite for Best Picture went to romantic comedy ‘Saigon, I Love You’ (Sài Gòn, Anh Yêu Em), the directorial debut of Ly Minh Thang, which tells an intertwining love story between the people of the southern Vietnamese metropolis.
‘Zodiac 12: Five Steps of Love’ (12 Chòm Sao: Vẽ Đường Cho Yêu Chạy) and ‘Tam Cam: The Untold’ (Tấm Cám: Chuyện Chưa Kể) each went home with a Silver Kite, presented to runners-up in the category.
‘Zodiac 12’ director Vu Ngoc Phuong also won Best Director for his direction in the teen romance movie.
Actor Ha Hien was announced this year’s Best Actor in a Leading Role for his outstanding portrayal of a troubled young man coming to terms with his past by coaching his brother's football team in the sport drama film ‘Sut.’
Actress Vu Phuong Anh (Jun Vu) won Best Actress in a Leading Role for her role in ‘Zodiac 12: Five Steps of Love,' which also saw Nguyen Do Quynh Chi win Best Supporting Actress.
Rising comic actor Huynh Lap won Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of an LGBT son of a single mother in ‘Saigon, I Love You.'
'Saigon, I Love You' won three more awards for Best Screenplay, Best Original Score, and Best Production Design, making it the night's biggest winner.
In addition to the 19 motion pictures, Sunday’s ceremony also handed out awards honoring 21 TV dramas, 13 animated features, 57 documentaries, 16 short films and five works of film critics.
Dang Xuan Hai, chairman of the Vietnam Cinema Association, delivers his opening remarks at the 2016 Golden Kite Awards in Ho Chi Minh City, April 9, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Vu Ngoc Phuong (C) receives the Best Director award at the Golden Kite Awards in Ho Chi Minh City, April 9, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Ha Hien (L) and director Vu Ngoc Phuong (on behalf of actress Jun Vu) receive Best Actor and Best Actress awards at the Golden Kite Awards in Ho Chi Minh City, April 9, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Nguyen Do Quynh Chi (second right) and Huynh Lap (second left) receive Best Supporting Actress and Best Supporting Actor awards at the Golden Kite Awards in Ho Chi Minh City, April 9, 2017. Photo: Tuoi Tre