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Hollywood hosts China’s Huading Film Awards Berry wins top honor, the Global Icon Award

HOLLYWOOD, United States, June 2, (Agencies): China’s Huading Film Award ceremony was held for the first time in the United States on Sunday, with Hollywood celebrities like Halle Berry and Orlando Bloom receiving honors. While the Chinese awards are little known in the United States, western film celebrities understand the importance of the burgeoning Chinese market and many were present at the event. The bilingual show, hosted by Chinese TV personality Olivia Xu and Chinese-American actress Lucy Liu, was held in the city’s Ricardo Montalban theater and broadcast to millions of viewers across the Chinese-speaking world. Winners were chosen by some 80 million members of the Chinese public who participated via surveys and Internet polling, according to the Beijing-based Global Talents Media Group, which has organized the annual awards event since 2007.

Halle Berry — who plays the role of Storm in the “X-Men” film saga and won an Oscar in 2002 for her work in “Monster’s Ball” — won the top honor, the Global Icon Award. “No one is ready to receive a global icon award,” said Berry, who appeared flustered, as she received her award. She added that she was “happy for the better interpersonal relationship” between the Chinese public and Hollywood stars. Chinese voters chose last year’s “Fast and Furious 6,” starring Vin Diesel and the late Paul Walker, as the Best Global Movie of the Year. Mexico’s Guillermo del Toro won the top director award for his giant robot-and-monster movie “Pacific Rim” (2013), in which Asian cities and actors are prominent even though the movie was filmed in Canada.

“China was very important to me as a kid. It captured my imagination with its landscapes,” Del Toro said as he accepted his award. Orlando Bloom won the Best Global Movie Star award thanks to his appearance in hits like “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug,” and “The Lord of the Rings” and “Pirates of the Caribbean” trilogies. “Thanks to the fans that took time to see my movies,” he said, as he held up his award. “Hurt Locker” Oscar-winner Jeremy Renner — who was not at the event — won the Best Global Supporting Actor award for his role in 2013’s “American Hustle,” while Briton Charlie Hunnam won the award for Best Global Emerging Actor for his role as Jackson “Jax” Teller in the TV motorcycle gang series “Sons of Anarchy.”

Chinese viewers also chose “The Croods” as the Best Global Animated Movie, and honored German film composer Hans Zimmer for a career that includes composing music for dozens of movies like “The Lion King,” “Sherlock Holmes” and “Pirates of the Caribbean.” In 2013, eleven of the 20 top grossing movies in China were Hollywood productions. At the same time, China’s market for movies grew at a stunning 35 percent last year. Other celebrities at the event included Taiwanese actress Josephine Blankstein, who appeared in the 2000 Taiwanese movie “Yi Yi,” Summer Jikejunyi from “The Voice of China” talent show, and Chinese-Americans Jessika Van from the MTV series “Awkward” and Brian Yang from the TV police series “Hawaii Five-O.” Last year’s ceremony was held in October in Macao, where Australian Nicole Kidman, actors Nicolas Cage and Matthew Perry, and director Quentin Tarantino were among the Hollywood gliteratti winning awards.

Robbie Amell hasn’t been unemployed long following the cancelation of his CW show, “Tomorrow People.” Amell is the latest addition to high school movie “The DUFF.” He will play Wesley a slick but charming jock who Bianca (Mae Whitman) enlists in her quest to find herself and overthrow the school’s evil queen Madison (Bella Thorne), who had just named her their group’s DUFF aka “designated ugly fat friend.” As TheWrap previously reported, “The Hangover” and “Community” star Ken Jeong will also star. Before his central role on “Tomorrow People,” Amell also starred on MTV’s “Zach Stone Is Going to Be Famous,” NBC’s “1600 Penn,” and a recurring role on ABC’s “Revenge,” among other credits. His film credits include “Struck by Lightning” and “Anatomy of the Tide.”

Ari Sandel is directing “The DUFF” from a script by Josh A. Cagan, who adapted the novel by Kody Keplinger. McG and Mary Viola are producing for Wonderland Sound and Vision along with Vast Entertainment’s Lane Shefter Bishop as executive producer. Bishop brought the book to Wonderland. CBS Films boarded the project in 2011, and its executives Mark Ross and Alex Ginno will oversee the project on behalf of the studio. Production is expected to start this summer in Atlanta. WME, InVision and legal firm Felker Toczek Gellman Suddleson represent Amell.

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