Busan: Netflix's 'The Naked Director,' 'The Hormones' Win Big at Inaugural Asia Content Awards

Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images

The new awards show is part of the Busan International Film Festival's push to diversify into television in streaming content to keep up with changes across the global screen sector.

The inaugural edition of the Asia Contents Awards, a new set of screen honors feting achievement in television and streaming, went down with plenty of pomp and K-pop at the Busan International Film Festival on Sunday night.

The glitzy red carpet event was hosted by Miss Korea Kim Se-yeon and Korean-German actor Yoo Teo at Dongseo University’s Sohyang Theater, just next door to the festival's main venue, the Busan Cinema Center. Popular K-pop singer Jung Dong-ha and girl group AOA performed as special music guests.

The event, which is co-organized by the Busan festival's Asian Film Market, is part of both events' joint pledge to adapt to the disruption underway in the global screen industry. The market is trying to rebrand from strictly a film market to being a sales platform for streaming series, television shows, VR content and potentially even shortform. The new Asia Contents Awards are an effort to bring star power and critical recognition into the equation.

Perhaps in response to the fragmented nature of the TV and streaming landscape of Asia, many of the awards went out to joint winners from various territories in the region. Shows claiming prizes across categories included Netflix's Japanese period sex dramedy The Naked Director; Thailand's hit teen drama Hormones: The Series (produced by Bangkok-based GTH but licensed by Netflix); and Singaporean drama Faculty.

"Not everyone can understand and accept LGBT relationships, but from the day we started filming Hormones until the last day, I learned that regardless of gender all love is just love,” said Sananthachat Thanapatpisal, one of the stars of Hormones, who plays a high-school girl in a same-sex relationship. Thanapatpisal won the best newcomer prize alongside her co-star Kemisara Paladesh; The Naked Director's Morita Misato; and Jin Xionghao and Zhuang Dafei, the director and actress duo, respectively, of mainland Chinese drama Mountains and Ocean.

The complete winners list is below. 

Newcomer
Kemisara Paladesh (Actress,Thailand) and Sananthachat Thanapatpisal (Actress, Thailand) — Hormones: The Series
Jin Xiong Hao (Director) and Zhuang Dafei (Actress, China) — Mountains and Ocean
Morita Misato (Actress, Japan) — The Naked Director

Best Rising Star

Fang Rong (Actress, Singapore) — Faculty

Best Writer

Lu Shih-yuan (Producer and writer) — The World Between Us

Park Hae Young (Writer, Korea) — My Mister



Best Actor

Lei Jia Yin (China) — The Longest Day in Chang'an
Kim Nam Gil (Korea) — The Fiery Priest

Yamada Takayuki (Japan) — The Naked Director



Best Actress

Yao Chen (China) — All Is Well

Maja Salvador (Philippines) — Wild Flower



Lifetime Achievement Award

Raymond Lee Wai Man (Hong Kong)



Best Asian Drama

Hormones: The Series (Thailand)
Faculty (Singapore)

Best Creative

Yongkyu Kim (Producer, Studio Dragon) — Mr. Sunshine



Excellence Award

Kim Jae Joong (Actor and Singer, Korea)