Four words is all it took for “Parasite” distributor Neon to snap back at Donald Trump after he mocked the Bong Joon Ho-directed movie for winning the Best Picture Oscar. “Parasite” dominated the 92nd Academy Awards earlier this month, winning four Oscars for Best Picture, Best Director, Best Original Screenplay, and Best International Feature Film. The victories for “Parasite” marked the first time in history a South Korean feature film took home Oscars, while the movie’s Best Picture win made history as the first foreign-language film to ever win the top Academy prize. While many people in the industry praised “Parasite’s” Oscar wins as a positive game-changer for the Academy’s future, Trump mocked the Best Picture win at a February 20 rally in Colorado.
“How bad were the Academy Awards this year?” Trump asked his supporters at the event. “Did you see it? The winner is…a movie from South Korea! What the hell was that all about? We got enough problems with South Korea with trade. On top of that, they give him best movie of the year? Was it good? I don’t know. Let’s get ‘Gone With the Wind.’ Can we get ‘Gone With the Wind’ back, please?”
Neon wasted no time responding to Trump’s mockery on social media, writing in a caption: “Understandable, he can’t read.” “Parasite” marks Neon’s first Best Picture win in the studio’s three-year history, a remarkable feat considering the distributor is still relatively new. Neon first broke into the Oscars with “I, Tonya,” which won Allison Janney the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress.
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Neon picked up U.S. distribution rights to “Parasite” based on the strength of Bong’s script. The film debuted at the 2019 Cannes Film Festival and became the first South Korean feature to take home the Palme d’Or. Neon opened “Parasite” in theaters October 5 and it has since gone on to earn $45 million at the U.S. box office, making it one of the top 5 foreign-language film releases ever at the domestic box office (unadjusted for inflation, and with reporting of foreign-language films before 1980 being spotty at best). “Parasite” is available on demand but continues to bring in big box office numbers, earning $6.8 million over the weekend after its Oscar wins. Neon announced this week it is bringing “Parasite” to nearly 200 IMAX theaters across the U.S. for an exclusive one-week run beginning today.
— NEON (@neonrated) February 21, 2020