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Seoul Drama Awards sees no Chinese shows this year, numerous crime series

  • Published : Aug 17, 2017 - 17:53
  • Updated : Aug 17, 2017 - 17:53

A press conference for the Seoul International Drama Awards takes place at the Korea Press Center in Seoul, Thursday. (Yonhap)
Chinese shows are absent from the eclectic selection of global drama series that have been nominated for this year’s Seoul International Drama Awards.

It is the first time that Chinese shows are not being considered for the awards since its inception in 2006.

“Although cultural exchange with China has become more difficult, a record number of shows from around the globe have been submitted,” said Kim Hye-song, secretary-general of the awards organization, at a press conference in Seoul Thursday.

“We mostly received period pieces from China in the past, but we have no submissions this year due to the THAAD dispute,” said Lee Soo-yeol, advisor at the Corea Drama Production Association, referring to the political tension between Korea and China over the deployment of US missile defense system.

A total of 29 works have been shortlisted for the awards.

Nominated in the mini-series category are Korea’s “Strong Girl Bongsoon,” which stars Park Bo-young as the female lead with superhuman strength, and the US drama “This is Us,” about a multi-ethnic family and an ensemble whose lives intertwine in unexpected ways, among others.

The Seoul International Drama Awards, now in its 12th year, received 266 submissions from 55 countries this year. Awards will be presented in eight categories -- TV movie, miniseries, serial drama, comedy, best director, best screenwriter, best actress and best actor.

Nominated in the TV movies category are programs such as Germany’s “Redemption Road,” which jury member and British film critic Jason Beschervaise called “extremely well-made, tackling its own history.”

“Pieces from Israel, Czechoslovakia and Brazil were particularly impressive,” said jury member and SBS drama producer Shin Kyung-soo.

Shin also noted that the number of crime-focused shows have increased.

“Perhaps viewers are seeking stronger, more provocative content. It felt like a reflection of the current times. We tried to look for shows that not only consumed crime as a subject but led to some kind of healing,” Shin said.

The full list of nominated works can be found at seouldrama.org.

The ceremony, set for Sept. 7 at the Yeouido KBS Hall, will be hosted by comedian Shin Dong-yup and actress Kim Jung-eun. Park Bo-gum, Park Bo-young and singer Ailee will also be present at the event.

By Rumy Doo (doo@heraldcorp.com)