South Korean TV series “The King’s Affection” became the first Korean drama to win at the International Emmy Awards.
The 20-episode drama, starring Park Eun-bin and Rowoon, won in the best telenovela category at the 50th edition of the annual awards in New York City on Nov. 21.
“The King’s Affection,” which is set in the Joseon Dynasty when having twins was considered a bad omen, follows the life of a princess who was sent away. She later comes back and poses as the crown prince after her fraternal twin brother is killed in childhood. The drama, directed by Song Hyun-wook and based on Lee So-young’s comics “Yeonmo,” aired on Korean broadcaster KBS2 and on Netflix last year.
The South Korean drama won against nominees “Nos Tempos do Imperador” from Brazil, “Two Lives” from Spain and “You Are My Hero” from China.
“I’m so happy that ‘The King’s Affection’ won the first-ever International Emmy as a Korean drama, and it’s a pleasure to have the potential of Korean dramas as a whole receive recognition,” Lee Geon Joon, the head of KBS Drama Center, told Soompi.
“I feel an immense sense of responsibility during this time when K-content is receiving so much love around the world,” he added. “We will do our best so that KBS dramas can play a large role in maintaining the potential of Korean [entertainment] content.”
Miky Lee, the vice chairwoman of CJ Group, was also honored at the 50th International Emmy Awards. South Korean actor Song Joong-ki presented the Directorate Award to Lee for her overall direction and management of CJ Group’s entertainment and media division.
“Miky Lee helped open Korea’s first movie multiplex in 1998 allowing for local Korean content to grow along together with Hollywood movies,” Song said. “She then paved the way for Korean TV series around the world. With her instinct for recognizing talent, she continues to support our artists and our industry. Acting as our ambassador, she not only focused on spreading great Korean storytelling but also our beloved culture.”
Upon accepting her award, Lee thanked Song and praised his talent. She also spoke about her journey in bridging together talented people and their dreams.
“I am truly honored to receive this award tonight,” Lee said in her recipient speech. “In the 25 years since we started CJ entertainment business, I am grateful to have been the bridge between many talented people and their dreams. I’m so proud to continue working with them to produce films like ‘Parasite’ and ‘Decision to Leave.’ I’m delighted and proud as a Korean that our content is being recognized, but I share this joy as part of the greater Global community.”
“I have heard from so many that the success of Korean content has given everyone hope that anyone can be part of global pop culture,” Lee added. “I’d like to keep bridging the people of the world. Once we are bridged together, when it comes to genuine human interaction, language is not a real barrier anymore. Let’s march on together and connect more people day by day.”
Featured Image via international Emmys (left, right)