The Golden Horse Awards, also known as the Chinese-language version of Oscars, has become overshadowed by political controversy after film director Fu Yue questioned the political status of Taiwan, reports the Guardian.
The statement led to the censoring of her speech on Chinese television and streams as coverage went black.
During her acceptance speech for the best documentary at Taiwan's annual Golden Horse film awards, an emotional Fu Yue wanted to call for an independent Taiwan. "I really hope our country will one day be treated as a genuine independent entity," the 36-year-old director said.
The director’s statement garnered loud applause from a huge audience in Taipei. “This is my biggest wish as a Taiwanese”, she added.
Despite being independent since 1949, China has been claiming Taiwan as a part of its territory for the past decade. For the past two decades, Taiwan is thriving on democracy compared to the authoritarian government in Beijing. The speech has led to various reactions to from both the sides.
Mainland Chinese actor, Tu Men, said on stage that he was honoured to be a presenter at the Golden Horse ceremony in "Taiwan, China" while adding people from both sides of the Taiwan Strait are his "family."
The statement led to the Taiwanese president Tsai Ing-wen reacted through a Facebook post where she said “we have never accepted such saying as ‘Taiwan, China’ and will not accept it. Taiwan is Taiwan,” while adding she is “proud of yesterday's Golden Horse Award, which highlights the fact that Taiwan is different from China”.
According to Taiwan News, in the wake of the statement, many Chinese participants left Taiwan early, cancelling appointments and promotional events. Reports also suggest that Chinese Communist Party has banned their citizens from participating at the 56th Golden Horse Awards.