O Yeong-su, of 'Squid Game,' wins South Korea's first Golden Globe Award

The South Korean actor O Yeong-su won the country’s first Golden Globe Award on Sunday for his role in the hit Netflix drama “Squid Game”, which despite criticism of the organizers of the ceremony for lack of diversity, caused cheers at home and abroad .

O, 77, won for his portrayal of Oh II-nam, among others against Billy Crudup from “The Morning Show” and Kieran Culkin from “Succession”.

“I feel like I’m floating on air. It makes me think, ‘I need to calm down, put my thoughts in order and hold back now,’ ”O said on Korean TV after his award was announced. “I have a hard time dealing with the amount of calls and messages I’ve received.”

O’s win came after Youn Yuh-jung became the first South Korean to win an Oscar last year and was voted Best Supporting Actress for her role in the immigrant story “Minari”.

Squid Game, a surprise hit for Netflix after it released last September, was the streaming service’s biggest non-English language show of all time.

Oh II-nam, also known as The Host or Player 001, is an old and seemingly vulnerable man with a brain tumor who later turns out to be the real mastermind of the game.

O Yeong-su, of 'Squid Game,' wins South Korea's first Golden Globe Award 1

The thriller tells the story of hundreds of people fighting who feel compelled to participate in children’s games with fatal consequences to win a prize of 45.6 billion Korean dollars (approximately $ 38 million). Although it was dystopian and surreal at times, it was hailed for its portrayal of income inequality and the overwhelming debt burden of South Korean society.

Born in 1944 in Kaepung, which is now a North Korean border town, O is considered one of the greatest stage actors in South Korea. Since 1963 he has participated in more than 200 stage productions and has won a number of important prizes.

He has also played many charismatic supporting characters in film and television, including Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter … and Spring, released in 2003 by award-winning director Kim Ki-duk.

O’s win came at the dramatically reduced Golden Globe Awards, which historically drew 18 million television viewers on a regular basis.

The press association has been subjected to intensive public scrutiny since the beginning of last year when The Los Angeles Times published an investigative report on the organizers of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, or HFPA, describing ethical misconduct within the group and that none of its fewer than 90 voting members were black at the time.

O Yeong-su, right, won the Golden Globe for his portrayal of Oh II-nam.Well, Juhan / Netflix

This year, the 79th edition of the ceremony, it has been reduced to a live blog rather than a television show, nominees, red carpet, presenter, journalist, or even a live stream.

Instead, members of the HFPA and some recipients of the group’s philanthropic grants gathered at the Beverly Hilton Hotel for a 90-minute private event and posted the names of the film and television winners on the organization’s social media feeds.

While posting winners on social media seems like an easy task, those who followed on Twitter were sometimes a little confused. The tweets often omitted exactly which project a person had won for.

Other TV winners were: Sarah Snook and Jeremy Strong for “Succession”, which was named best drama, Jean Smart for “Hacks”, which was also named best comedy, Jason Sudeikis for “Ted Lasso”, Kate Winslet for “Mare of Easttown “; and Michael Keaton for “Dopesick”.

Barry Jenkins’ “The Underground Railroad” won Best Limited Edition Series. The group announced on their website that “Pose” star Michaela Jaé Rodriguez was the first trans person to win a Golden Globe.

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