The Academy’s most prestigious Best Picture award was taken home by director Bong Joong-Ho’s black comedy about class struggle, Parasite, making it the first foreign-language film to win the category.
The South Korean hit also grabbed Best Director, Best Original Screenplay and Best International Film awards. The satirical drama faced fierce competition from Quentin Tarantino’s showbiz production Once upon a time in Hollywood, Marin Scorsese’s drama The Irishman’ and billion dollar club movie, Joker. Parasite not only won the Best Picture but also became the first with a primarily Asian Cast. In the process, it also beat Ford vs Ferari, Marriage Story, Little Women, 1917 and Jojo Rabbit.
Parasite found great support among critics and Hollywood embraced Bong as a serious filmmaker after his six previous films, including The Host, Snowpiercer and Okja grabbed a lot of attention and following.
Only 11 foreign-language films have been nominated the Best Picture including Roma, Amour, Babel and Crouching Tiger, and Hidden Dragon. Last year, many expected that Alfonso Cuaron’s autobiographical drama Roma might win the Best Picture and the Best Director but it lost to Green Book. Roma was also the first non-English speaking film to be nominated in the category.
Parasite was given a conventional release in theatres unlike some other best-picture nominees. Since its release in the last October, it has grossed 35.5 million dollars in the United States and Canada, and 132.1 million dollars in other territories (including 72 million dollars from South Korea), for a worldwide total of $167.6 million. With the Best Picture win, it is expected to reach plus 40 million. It may be mentioned that South Korean film industry celebrated 100 years of Cinema in 2019.