An awards ceremony is a much-anticipated event for all who are involved and also the public as it is an exciting occasion to award the deserving ones. Endless luminous flashes and cheers from the supporters as well as those who celebrate the inspiring moments are generally expected at awards ceremonies. However, the situation was rather different at the 2018 Dae Jong Film Awards that was held on October 22. To everyone’s surprise, a substitute who has no relation at all to the original winner took the stage which caused further confusion and puzzled reactions from the viewers. Nevertheless, there surely were attempts of changes that deliver positive possibilities for improvement in the upcoming occasions.
Contrary to the splendid mood and the hall filled with actors gathering together, the scene of the 2018 Dae Jong Film Awards seemed to be rather empty with many of the seats left unoccupied. Actors sat sparsely with empty seats between them, and it was hard to say that the atmosphere of the award ceremony was filled with its typical air of excitement. The announcements for awards and applause could not be fully delivered when nominees were absent; moreover, it conveyed the impression of emptiness and disregard for the significance of the event.
Furthermore, absences of the actual awardees whose place was replaced with irrelevant representatives made the festival even more worthy of criticism. In common practice, a substitute who has some relationship with the awardee is welcomed to the stage when the awardee is unable to attend. However, when the award nominee for music awards in film was announced during the Dae Jong Film Awards, a singer with absolutely no connection to the awardee and whom even the officials of the film production company did not recognize went up on the stage and congratulated the awardee. Later on, Kim Ji Yeon, the representative of the film production company named Siren Pictures, pointed out in a critical manner regarding the immature flow of the event in which an unknown figure received the award instead.
The fundamental issue does not set in receiving awards on behalf of the awardee since it may be unavoidable to be absent from the ceremony. The lack of communication between the host of the ceremony and award winners that caused such confusion in the live broadcast is where the blame should be pointed at. Furthermore, the incident has portrayed how unorganized the event was and even diminished both its significance and the public’s trust in it.
Despite the criticism and disputes of its acceptance, there have been impressive changes made in the ceremony that should be noticed. As the recipient for the Best New Male Actor, Lee Ka Sob, the protagonist of the film The Seeds of Violence (2017), was nominated. This was relatively exceptional, as the movie was viewed only by 1,000 audiences. Thus, unlike the previously existing judging criteria of evaluating box-office records, the award was presented solely in consideration of a low-budget film and its cinematic value.
The judging standards and evaluation seemed to differ from the past which highlighted the significance of the true meanings of awards. The honor of being nominated is valuable in itself which deserves an applause. The shortcoming of the event itself may blur the value and the disconcerting aberration caused by the miscommunication regarding substitutes has caused further criticism. In order to handle the comments regarding ceremonies, the significance and values of awards itself along with the basics of participation in the events should be reassessed, and the first step toward this would be minimizing the discretion in receiving awards and embracing the sincere significance of awards.