<i>Better Days</i>, a HD Entertainment’s Co-production, Swept the Hong Kong Film Awards to Win 8 Honours
On the afternoon of May 6, the 39th Hong Kong Film Awards announced the list of winners online. Better Days, a co-production of HG Entertainment, swept the Awards and claimed Best Film, Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actress, Best New Performer, Best Cinematography, Best Costume & Makeup Design, and Best Original Film Song, a total of 8 awards, to become the biggest winner of the year.
Due to the COVID pandemic, this year’s Awards ceremony was cancelled. In its place was an online live stream where Derek Yee, Chairman of the Hong Kong Film Awards Association, announced the winners of the 19 awards. This is the first time in the Award’s 39-year history that a live ceremony has been cancelled.
In this year’s award, Better Days, directed by Derek Tsang, starring Zhou Dongyu and Jackson Yee, was nominated for 12 awards and claimed 8, including Best Actress for Zhou and Best New Performer for Yee.
Zhou Dongyu won the 2016 Golden Horse Award for Best Actress for her performance in Soul Mate, also directed by Derek Tsang. After winning the Hong Kong Film Award for Best Actress, she became the first person to hold both titles since the 1990s.
Jackson Yee was only 17 years old when Better Days was shot. Yee had no formal acting training and this was his first leading role. Nonetheless, his performance as the street punk, Xiaobei, was widely appreciated for his refined interpretation of the struggle and confusion of an underprivileged juvenile.?
Better Days is a campus story that depicts how two youngsters’ lives are changed by a campus accident on the eve of the national college entrance exam, and how the two support and take care of each other to become the persons they wish to be. The movie was released in China on October 25, 2019 and grossed 500 million CNY after the first three days. The movie remained the box office leader for three weeks, earning a total of 1.558 billion CNY at the box office. It is the 9th highest-grossing film in China in 2019 and the 31st highest-grossing film of all time.
On March 21, 2020, Better Days also took Best Film, Best Director and Best Actress in Hong Kong Film Directors’ Guild Awards.