The Lawrence Kan-directed comedy-drama received 16 nominations at Tuesday’s nominations event, including best picture and best new director, as well as others for cinematography, editing, sound design and original song.
The story sees an investigative journalist go undercover to expose cruelty and other wrongdoing at Rainbow Bridge Care Home. It premiered last year at the Shanghai film festival and was a highlight of the New York Asian Film Festival, but came up empty-handed at the Golden Horse Film Awards, where it had been nominated in five categories. It enjoyed its commercial launch in Hong Kong in November.
Other contenders in the HKFA best film category include: Nick Cheung’s “Time Still Turns the Pages,” Soi Cheang’s “Mad Fate,” Felix Chong’s “The Goldfinger” and the box office record-breaker “A guilty conscience”, directed by Jack Ng. The same five films accumulated nominations for best director. Both “Daylight” and “Pages” are produced by Derek Yee, president of the HKFA.
The same five titles also garnered other nominations. “Pages” and “Goldfinger” racked up 12 each. “Mad Fate,” which debuted in Berlin last year, and “Guilty Conscience” scored ten each.
There were also nominations for best Asian Chinese film, which went to “The Pig, the Snake and the Pigeon,” “No More Bets,” “Abang Adik,” “Full River Red” and the Taiwanese hit “Marry My Dead Body.”
“With the return to normality in Hong Kong society last year and the full reopening of cinemas across the city, more films were able to be screened. In 2023, a total of 50 films will be eligible for the 42nd Hong Kong Film Awards, which is a significant increase of 50% compared to 33 films in 2022. The 50 nominated films cover a wide range of genres and themes, many of which are produced by emerging directors and starring young actors and new idols. These films have managed to attract a wider audience to return to theaters and have garnered enthusiastic support. The ten highest-grossing local films have delivered encouraging results, with good audience feedback and excellent box office records of more than HK$10 million in earnings,” Yee said.
The awards ceremony will be held on April 14 at the Hong Kong Cultural Center in Kowloon and the red carpet prelude will once again return to the centre’s Harbourfront Staircase.