TAIPEI – Taiwanese actor Chang Chen and actress Alyssa Chia have won their first Golden Horse Awards.
Chia’s film, The Falls, was the biggest victor with four wins at the 58th edition of the awards – considered the Oscars of the Chinese-language movie world – on Saturday (Nov 27).
Chang, who has been in the entertainment industry for over 30 years, won Best Leading Actor for his role in the mystery film The Soul, which also starred Singapore-based actor Christopher Lee and Taiwanese actress Janine Chang.
The 45-year-old dropped his weight by 12kg to play a prosecutor investigating a murder while suffering from cancer in the movie.
In his acceptance speech, he thanked, among others, the movie director Cheng Wei-hao as well as the late director Edward Yang, who was Chang’s mentor and role model.
Yang, who died at the age of 59 in 2007, directed the Golden Horse-winning teen crime drama A Brighter Summer Day (1991), which featured Chang in his first major movie role when he was 13.
Chang, who has been nominated three times for Best Leading Actor, including for A Brighter Summer Day, was up against Hong Kong actor Francis Ng, and Taiwanese actors Cheng Jen-shuo, Roy Chiu and Kai Ko this year.
He received the award from Singapore actor Mark Lee and Malaysian actress Lee Sinje after a lively exchange between both presenters.
Mark Lee was nominated for Best Leading Actor at last year’s awards, while Lee Sinje was nominated for Best Leading Actress in 2019.
Chia, who has also been in the entertainment industry for 30 years, clinched her first Best Leading Actress for her role in the family drama The Falls.
The 47-year-old played a single mother whose mental state worsens while being quarantined with her teenage daughter, played by Gingle Wang, in an apartment.
Chia, nominated for the first time, was up against Wang, Chen Shiang-chyi, Karena Lam and Caitlin Fang in the category.
Fang, 15, won Best New Performer for her role in American Girl, which also starred Lam as her mother.
The Falls, directed by Chung Mong-hong, also won the coveted Best Feature Film, Best Original Screenplay and Best Original Film Score.
Clara Law won the Best Director award for Drifting Petals. Best Supporting Actor went to Liu Kuan-ting for Treat Or Trick, while Wang Yu-xuan received Best Supporting Actress for Goddamned Asura.
Hong Kong movie Drifting, which had the most number of nominations at 12, including Best Feature Film, Best Director and Best Leading Actor, won Best Adapted Screenplay.
The ceremony, held at the Sun Yat-sen Memorial Hall in Taipei, was hosted by singer-actor Austin Lin and featured Taiwanese singer Stella Chang’s first public performance since she divorced her banker husband Sung Hsueh-jen last year.
This article was first published in The Straits Times. Permission required for reproduction.