'Parasite' Wins Big At The 56th Grand Bell Awards, The Korean Equivalent To The Oscars

Parasite's winning streak continues more than a year after its historic Palme D'or win at last year's Cannes Film Festival. Bong Joon-ho's darkly comic thriller won big at South Korea's prestigious Grand Bell Awards this week, scooping up five awards for Best Film, Best Director, Best Supporting Actress for Lee Jung-eun, Best Screenplay, and Best Music. It's fitting that the record-setting film which brought the South Korean film industry to the front of the global stage would end its incredible awards season in Korea.

Four months off its historic wins at the 92nd Academy Awards in February, including for Best Picture, Parasite received a warm homecoming at South Korea's Grand Bell Awards, the country's most prestigious movie awards. Parasite swept the awards ceremony with five wins: Best Film, Best Director for Bong Joon-ho, Best Supporting Actress for Lee Jung-eun, Best Screenplay for Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-win, and Best Music for Jung Jae-il.

But though Song Kang-ho was up for Best Actor and Park Myung-hoon for Best Supporting Actor, Parasite wasn't able to bag more major acting awards, which feels ironic, considering the energetic campaign on NEON's part and glowing press praising the acting of the cast that resulted in a SAG ensemble award win for the cast (but no acting recognition from the Academy).

Lee Byung-hun, a major star in South Korea and a longtime heartthrob, would win won Best Actor for Ashfall, while Jung Yu-mi won the Best Actress Award for Kim Ji Young: Born 1982, a film that became a lighting rod of controversy over its feminist themes. The Best Supporting Actor winner was Jin Seon-kyu for the box office smash success Extreme Job, which is already getting an English-language remake.

Parasite made its exclusive streaming debut on Hulu fresh off winning four top trophies at the 202o Academy Awards in February, including Best Picture — marking the first time in history a foreign-language film has won the award. The darkly comic thriller, which follows an impoverished family as they con their way into the employ of a wealthy family, enjoyed a banner year since it made its world premiere at Cannes in May 2019, racking up prestigious awards left and right and near-universal acclaim.

Now that Parasite has ended its banner awards year, the film's legacy is getting the cherry on top with a debut on The Criterion Collection later this year, alongside Bong's masterful crime drama Memories of Murder.