China's 'Mystery' honored at Asian Film Awards
From left, Philippines actress Nora Aunor, Philippines actor Eddie Garcia, Japanese actress Makiko Watanabe and Chinese actress Qi Xi pose with their trophies after winning the Best Actress Award, Best Actor Award, Best Supporting Actress Award and Best Newcomer Award at the Asian Film Awards as part of the 37th Hong Kong International Film Festival in Hong Kong Monday, March. 18, 2013. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
HONG KONG (AP) — Chinese melodrama "Mystery" and veteran Filipino performers Nora Aunor and Eddie Garcia were honored with the top prizes at the Asian Film Awards.
The film directed by the often-censored Lou Ye tells the story of a middle-age woman who plans to take revenge on her husband after discovering his infidelity.
Lou said backstage Monday night that the award was an encouragement to the whole team who worked on the film, including photographers and art directors. "Mystery" also took home the award for best newcomer, Qi Xi, and best screenwriters.
Mainland China in 2006 banned Lou from filming for five years after he screened a film without approval, but in the interim he filmed a feature using small, digital cameras in defiance of the ban.
The Philippines actress Nora Aunor poses with her trophy after winning the Best Actress Award of her movie "Thy Womb" at the Asian Film Awards as part of the 37th Hong Kong International Film Festival in Hong Kong Monday, March. 18, 2013. (AP Photo/Kin Cheung)
Aunor, one of the most popular Filipino stars of the 1970s and '80s, won best actress honors for her comeback film, "Thy Womb," playing a midwife struggling with her own infertility in a picturesque, impoverished Muslim community in the southern Philippines. It was directed by the award-winning filmmaker Brillante Mendoza but performed poorly in Philippine cinemas.
Backstage, Aunor thanked the AFA and her fans back home, while countryman and best-actor honoree Garcia said he was "elated and honored" for his win. The 87-year-old actor also took home the people's choice award for favorite actor.
Garcia dazzled viewers playing an aging gay man coping with loneliness and missed opportunities in "Bwakaw," or "Voracious," a drama that tested sensibilities about sexuality in the conservative Catholic country.