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Film Director Hwang Dong-Hyuk, Awarded the 16th Pony Chung Innovation Award

- Award ceremony held on June 16 at the Pony Chung Hall in IPARK Tower, Samseong-dong
- Made a new leap forward from being a leading film director who achieved innovation in genres and continuously showed interest in social issues to being a creator that the whole world is paying attention to with the Netflix series “Squid Game”

The Pony Chung Foundation (Chairman Chung Mong-Gyu) selected Director Hwang Dong-Hyuk, the producer and screenwriter of “Squid Game,” a Netflix series that became a worldwide sensation last year, as the winner of the 16th Pony Chung Innovation Award. The award ceremony was held on June 16 at the Pony Chung Hall in IPARK Tower, Samseong-dong.

At the award ceremony, Chairman Chung Mong-Gyu conveyed the reason Director Hwang was chosen as the award winner and congratulated him, stating that Director Hwang was a creator at the center of Korean cultural content with his constant sharp eye and deep interest in social issues, in addition to his bold steps in moving across various genres and subject matters. He added that he looked forward to Director Hwang’s future activities as an innovator since he has garnered global attention through the Netflix series “Squid Game.” The founder of the Pony Chung Foundation Chairman Chung Mong-Gyu, Ms. Park Young-Ja, the wife of the late Chung Se-Yung, Honorary Chairman of Hyundai Development Company, and others attended the award ceremony.

After debuting with the film “My Father” in 2007, Director Hwang Dong-Hyuk released works that had both cinematic quality and box-office value such as “Silenced” in 2011, “Miss Granny” in 2014, and “The Fortress” in 2017. He was hailed for his keen social exposé, meticulous direction, and artistic creativity. In 2021, through the Netflix series “Squid Game,” which took the world by storm, he captured profound thematic consciousness in an unpredictable story, shocking the global content market and expanding the field of Korean cultural content to the global market. Along with awards from abroad such as the 31st Gotham Awards, the 7th People’s Choice Awards, and the 27th Critics’ Choice Award, Director Hwang won Best Director and the Grand Prize in the television division of the 58th Baeksang Arts Awards that was held in May. Furthermore, he has been nominated for an Emmy, Hollywood’s biggest award for television, which is scheduled to take place in October 2022, leading him to make a new leap forward as a content creator of whom the world is taking notice.

At the award ceremony, Director Hwang Dong-Hyuk conveyed his gratitude, stating, “While creating ‘Squid Game,’ I was worried that it would be too unfamiliar and strange. However, if this work was able to be evaluated as a new and innovative work, contrary to my concern, then I think it’s all thanks to the people who viewed it that way. I’m so grateful that you viewed it that way and gave me this huge award. You gave me the courage to take on newer and more daring challenges in the future.”

The Pony Chung Innovation Award was established in 2006 and was named after the nickname of the late Chung Se-Yung, the founder of Hyundai Motor Company (predecessor of Hyundai Development Company) and Honorary Chairman of the HDC Group, which was “Pony Chung.” It has been awarded to individuals or organizations that have made positive changes to our society through innovative thinking and presents a prize money of KRW 200 million along with a trophy. The 1st Innovation Award was awarded to United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. Subsequently, Figure Skater Kim Yuna, Pianist Cho Seong-Jin, Director of Ajou University Hospital Trauma Center Lee Guk-Jong, Representative of social welfare organization Anna’s House Father Kim Ha-Jong, HYBE Chairman Bang Si-Hyuk and Distinguished Professor at KAIST Lee Sang-Yup, among others, also received the award.