SOUTH Korean cineastes shone at the Asian Film Awards Monday, winning Best Director, Best Screenplay, Best Actor, Best Supporting Actress and Best Editing awards. The fifth edition of the awards, held in conjunction with the Hong Kong International Film Festival, featured a tough competition among some of the most renowned Asian cineastes and the red carpet event beamed brighter than ever with the attendance of top stars. Yet it was marked by many absences in the aftermath of the disastrous earthquakes in Japan, and ovations were respectful rather than enthusiastic. Nevertheless the celebratory mood peaked with Korean cinema demonstrating its ever-growing prominence in the international film industry. Eight Korean films won 17 nominations in 14 categories, with sometimes more than one local work vying for the same award among five nominees. In addition to five awards, two more non-competitive titles went to Korean talent. Lee Chang-dong won prizes for both Best Director and Screenplay. My scenario seems to have some good things but its really the actors and actresses, especially my main actress Yoon Jung-hee, and the staff _ they blew the breath of life into my work, said Lee, who won the Best Screenplay prize at the 2010 Cannes Film Festival for Poetry. Park Hoon-jung was also nominated for the Hong Kong events Best Screenplay prize for the crime drama The Unjust. Ha Jung-woo won Best Actor for his role in the gritty Korean thriller, Yellow Sea. Id like to share this honor and happiness entirely with the 'Yellow Sea team. Thank you, Ha said about winning over prominent stars such as Chow Yun-fat, appearing sleek in a black tuxedo and bow tie. Yellow Sea was nominated for a total of four awards, including Best Director, Production Design and Music Score. Yellow Seas Na Hong-jin ceded the directing prize to the veteran Lee Chang-dong. When Lee reappeared onstage to accept the award for Best Director, he thanked the jury and film festival, as well as his wife and the people who love films but at the same time love poetry. Korean Times