‘Parasite’ stars Park So-dam and Choi Woo-sik.
Parasite topped off almost a year of non-stop award wins with six Oscar nominations, which were announced today. The film, directed by Bong Joon-ho, and starring Song Kang-ho, Lee Sun-kyun, Jo Yeo-jung, Park So-dam, and Choi Woo-sik, has been raking in awards since it became the first Korean film to win the Palme d’Or at the Cannes Film Festival in May 2019.
The Oscar nominations include not only Best Foreign Language Film but also Best Picture, competing in the latter category with Ford v Ferrari, The Irishman, Jojo Rabbit, Joker, Little Women, Marriage Story, 1917, and Once Upon A Time in Hollywood.
Bong Joon-ho was nominated for the Best Director award and in that category will compete with Martin Scorsese, Sam Mendes, Todd Phillips and Quentin Tarantino.
The film’s writers, Bong Joon-ho and Han Jin-won, were nominated for Best Original Screenplay, while Yang Jin-mo’s editing earned the film a nomination for Best Film Editing.
The final nomination was for production design. Most of the film’s action takes place within two homes, both of which were meticulously planned out by the director and realized in detail by production designer Lee Ha-jun.
With this many nominations, the odds of the film winning at least one Oscar, another first for a South Korean film, become even more likely.
Earlier in the week, the film won the Best Foreign Language Film award at the Critics Choice Awards and a Best Director Award for Bong. The film was nominated for but did not win Best Acting Ensemble, Screenplay, Editing, Production Design and Picture. Parasite also won Best Foreign Language Film at the 2020 Golden Globes.
The film’s story resonated with an international audience even though all of the action takes place in South Korea and the dialogue is in Korean. The plot involves two families, the poor Kim family, who have few options, and the wealthy Park family who are dependent on the services of the economically disadvantaged. While the Kim family attempts to scam the Park family, it is difficult to say just who the parasites are in this film, as the rich can’t seem to function well without servants to do their bidding.
Before Parasite, Bong released two English-language films, Snowpiercer, which also focused on economic inequality, and Okja, about the ethics of raising animals for food, as well as several highly acclaimed Korean films, including Memories of Murder and Mother.
The 92nd Academy Awards take place on Feb. 9.