Taiwan’s annual awards festival Golden Horse (金马奖), often referred to as “Chinese Oscars” is known for celebrating the achievement of Chinese-language movies from, China, Taiwan, Malaysia and Singapore.
However, the 55th edition of Golden Horse Awards which took place last Saturday has gained controversy when it turned political over the status of Taiwan.
— Ken (@Ken) November 17, 2018
The drama started when Taiwanese director Fu Yue (傅榆) who won the best documentary award, said in her acceptance speech that she hoped that one day Taiwan would be recognised as an “independent entity”.
Her speech has triggered anger among Chinese celebrities and netizens including Gong Li (巩俐), Xu Zheng (徐峥), Tu Men (涂門), and more.
Chinese mainland celebrities joined the hashtag campaign “China: Not even a bit can be left behind” on Sina Weibo in protest of a "pro-Taiwan independence documentary” winning Best Documentary at Taiwan's #GoldenHorseAwards on Saturday. pic.twitter.com/bsBuZBlQK1
— Global Times (@globaltimesnews) November 18, 2018
For those who are not aware, the political status of Taiwan has been a sensitive issue for years. It is resulted from the Chinese Civil War in 1949, causing the subsequent split of China into the two present-day self-governing entities; China, also known as People’s Republic of China (PRC) and Taiwan, also called Republic of China (ROC).
Following Fu’s speech, Mainland Chinese former Best Actor winner Tu Men further complicated the issue when he said that he is honoured to return to “Taiwan, China” to present the Best Leading Actress award.
Revenge by 涂門: “I’m happy to be back to China’s Taiwan Golden Horse” pic.twitter.com/jMjdkgXM0MADVERTISEMENT
— Pierre-Yves Baubry (@pybaubry) November 17, 2018
Later on Sunday, Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) spoke out on Facebook clarifying that “Taiwan is Taiwan” and Taiwanese never accepted the term “Taiwan, China”, and they will never do.
Things have gotten more awkward when leading Chinese actress Gong Li who is also one of the juries, refused to present an award with Taiwanese Oscar-winner Ang Lee (李安), chairman of the Golden Horse committee, reportedly over the pro-independence comments made by the Taiwanese documentary winner.
It has also been reported that many Chinese celebrities were allegedly asked to boycott the after-ceremony party and leave Taiwan as soon as possible.