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Cho Jae-hyun wins acting prize at Montreal Film Festival

Actor Cho Jae-hyun won the best actor prize at this year’s Fantasia International Film Festival in Montreal, Canada, for his performance as a hunchback in director Jeon Kyu-hwan’s film “The Weight.”

In the 2012 film, Cho plays a mortician who accepts the corpses of those who died without any family or friends to pay for the funeral.

Cho is said to have agreed to star in the low-budget movie for free.

Director Jeon won the Queer Lion prize at last year’s Venice International Film Festival for the movie. He is the first Korean director to win the prize, which is given to the best movie with LGBT themes.
A scene from “The Weight.” (NEW)
A scene from “The Weight.” (NEW)

Most of Jeon’s films, including Berlinale-featured “Varanasi” and “Dance Town,” have dealt with the underbelly of society. His characters include a struggling North Korean defector, a migrant worker exploited in Seoul, and an ex-con pedophile. “The Weight” is his fifth feature film, which premiered at last year’s Busan International Film Festival.

Actor Cho started his career in television, officially making his debut in 1990 in KBS’ drama series “The Age of Ambition.” He is best known for his appearances in director Kim Ki-duk’s early works that created much controversy, including “Crocodile” (1996) and “Bad Guy” (2001).

His recent film “El Condor Pasa,” in which he played a Catholic priest who gets involved with a rape and murder case of a teen who used to attend his church, was invited to the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in Karlovy Vary, Czech Republic, last month.

The actor also has also been serving as the director of the DMZ Korean International Documentary Film Festival since 2009.

By Claire Lee (
Korea Herald daum