BEIJING BLUES and LIFE WITHOUT PRINCIPLE Top Taipei Golden Horse Awards

James Marsh, Asian Editor
Gao Qunshu's Beijing Blues was the surprise winner at the 2012 Taipei Golden Horse Awards on Saturday night, bagging the award for Best Film, as well as Best Cinematography and Best Editing. This low-budget mainland production about a plain clothes police officer wrestling with his soul while taking down petty thieves and con artists beat off high-profile competition from the likes of Johnnie To's Life Without Principle and Lou Ye's Mystery to take home the top prize in what are regarded by many as the most prestigious awards in Asian Cinema. 

Neither of those other films went home empty-handed, however, as To was named Best Director and Lau Ching Wan nabbed the Best Actor prize, while Mystery won the award for Best Original Score as well as Best Newcomer for young actress Qi Xi. Other notable wins on the night saw Hong Kong comedian Ronald Cheng win the Best Supporting Actor award for his scene-stealing turn as a foul-mouthed mainland gangster in Pang Ho Cheung's Vulgaria, and Taiwanese beauty Gwei Lun Mei (pictured) named Best Actress for the politically-charged romantic drama Gf*Bf, which also won the Audience Choice award.

Full list of winners:

Best Film - Beijing Blues (dir. Gao Qunshu)

Best Director - Johnnie To (Life Without Principle)

Best Actor - Lau Ching Wan (Life Without Principle)

Best Actress - Gwei Lun Mei (Gf*Bf)

Best Supporting Actor - Ronald Cheng (Vulgaria)

Best Supporting Actress - Liang Jing (Design of Death)

Best Documentary - China Heavyweight (dir. Yung Chang)

Best Short Film - The Home Gleaners (dir. Zhang Siqing)

Best New Director - Chang Jung Chi (Touch of the Light)

Best New Performer - Qi Xi (Mystery)

Best Original Screenplay - Milkyway Creative Team, Au Kin Yee, Wong King Fai (Life Without Principle)

Best Adapted Screenplay - Bao Jing Jing (Love is not Blind)

Best Cinematography - Wu Di (Beijing Blues)

Best Visual Effects - Wook Kim, Frankie Chung, Josh Cole (Flying Swords of Dragon Gate)

Best Art Direction - Lin Mu (Design of Death)

Best Makeup & Costume Design - Stanley Cheung (The Bullet Vanishes)

Best Action Choreography - Chin Ka Lok, Wong Wai Fai, Ng Hoi Tong (Motorway)

Best Original Film Score - Peyman Yazdanian, Johann Johannsson (Mystery)

Best Original Film Song - "DoReMi", Lin Xi, Lo Tayu, Sammi Cheng (Romancing in Thin Air)

Best Film Editing - Yang Hongyu (Beijing Blues)

Best Sound Effects - Kinson Tsang, Lai Chi Hung (Nightfall)

Outstanding Taiwanese Filmmaker of the Year - Huang Yu Siang

Audience Choice Award - Gf*Bf (dir. Yang Ya Che)

FIPRESCI Prize - Touch of the Light (dir. Chang Jung Chi)

Lifetime Achievement Award - Shih Chun
 
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