Actress Shim Eun-kyung poses with her best actress trophy during the 43rd Japan Academy Film Prize ceremony in Tokyo on Friday. (Japan Academy Film Prize/Yonhap)
Actress Shim Eun-kyung, 26, was honored with the Japan Academy Film Prize for best actress at this year’s awards ceremony for her role in “The Journalist.”
Ahead of her victory on Friday at the 43rd Japan Academy Film Prize, Shim had been nominated in January along with Nikaido Fumi, Matsuoka Mayu, Miyazawa Rie and Yoshinaga Sayuri.
Upon hearing her name called out, Shim broke into tears of joy and surprise.
“I did not expect to win the award, so I could not prepare any speech. I am sorry,” Shim said. “It was an honor to perform with Tori Matsuzaka. Thank you so much. I will continue working my best. Thank you for tonight.”
While Bae Doo-na had been nominated for best actress in 2010 for “Air Doll,” Shim is the first Korean actress to grab the prize.
Directed by Fujii Michihito, “The Journalist” follows a young Korean-Japanese reporter named Yoshioka Erika, played by Shim, as she investigates a political scandal centering on a shady plan to found a new medical school.
The film also nabbed the prize for best film, and male lead Tori Matsuzaka, who portrayed an elite bureaucrat in the film, was named best actor.
Shim Eun-kyung (right) and Takumi Sugihara in "The Journalist" (Pop Entertainment)