The crime thriller Smugglers took home the Best Film Award at the 44th Blue Dragon Awards which honors excellence in film in South Korea. The ceremony featured nominations for 15 categories. Smugglers took the lead with 13 nominations, closely followed by Cobweb and Concrete Utopia, both with 11 nominations each.
Not only did Smugglers win Best Picture but it took home a Best Supporting Actor Award for Jo In-Sung, as well as a Best Supporting Actress award for Go Min-si. The story is set in the 70s and revolves around two deep sea divers known as haenyeo, who try smuggling when they have no other way to make ends meet.
The Best Director Award went to Um Tae-hwa for the film Concrete Utopia, starring Lee Byung-hun, Park Seo-joon, Park Bo-young and Kim Sun-young. Concrete Utopia is South Korea’s bid for Best International Feature at the 2024 Academy Awards. Um won against Kim Ji-woon for Cobweb, Ryoo Seung-wan for Smugglers, Lee Han for Honey Sweet and Jung Juri for Next Sohee. Um also directed Socialphobia.
Lee Byung-hun won the award for Best Actor for his role as the post-apocolyptic leader in Concrete Utopia. He competed against Doh Kyung-soo in The Moon, Ryu Jun-yeol in The Night Owl, Song Kang-ho in Cobweb and Yoo Hae-jin in Honey Sweet. Lee received the same award from the Daejong International Film Awards earlier this month.
Jung Yu-mi won Best Actress for her role in the film Sleep. She plays a woman whose husband’s sleeping habits become weirdly erratic when she is pregnant. She competed against Kim Hye-soo in Smugglers, Park Bo-young in Concrete Utopia, Yum Jung-ah in Smugglers, and Kim Seo-hyung in Greenhouse. Jung can also be seen in the film Alienoid 2 and appeared in the drama Snowdrop.
Best Supporting Actor went to Jo In-sung for his role in Smugglers. He was competing against Park Jung-min, who is also in Smugglers, Song Joong-ki in Hopeless, Oh Jung-se in Cobweb and Lee Joon-hyuk in The Roundup: No Way Out. Jo can also be seen in the Disney drama Moving.
Jeon Yeo-been won Best Supporting Actress for her role playing a producer in Cobweb. She competed against Kim Sun-young in Concrete Utopia, Lee Yun-ji in Dream Palace, Krystal Jung in Cobweb and Han Sun-hwa in Honey Sweet. Jeon can also be seen in the dramas Vincenzo, Glitch and A Time Called You.
Hong Xa Bin won the Best New Actor award for his role in Hopeless. He competed against Kang Tae-Joo and Kim Seon-ho who both appeared in The Childe, Lee Shin-young who appeared in Rebound and Choi Min-young who appeared in Dream Palace. Hong can be seen in the dramas Moving, Duty After School and Jirisan.
Go Min-si won Best New Actress for her role as a coffee shop owner in Smugglers. Go also appears in the dramas Sweet Home, Youth of May and Jirisan.
Song Joong-ki, Kim Seon-ho, Park Bo-young, and Jo In-sung won Popular Star Awards and a special award was given to Kim Hye-soo for her many years of hosting the awards. She steps down this year after hosting the awards for 30 years.
Best cinematography, lighting and editing awards went to The Night Owl and Best Music went to Chang Gi-ha for Smugglers.