On September 12 EST, the 2022 Emmy Awards took place with several Squid Game cast members in attendance, including Lee Jung-jae, Jung Ho-yeon, Park Hae-soo, Oh Young-soo, all of whom had been nominated in several categories, along with director Hwang Dong-hyuk.
The Netflix series made history with two of its Primetime Emmy Awards wins including Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series, for which Lee was nominated for his role as Seong Gi-hun. This marks the first time an Asian actor has won the award.
In his speech, the 49-year-old actor thanked the Television Academy and Netflix, before adding: “Thank you to Director Hwang for making realistic problem[s] we all face come to life so creatively on the screen, with a great script and amazing visuals.”
“To everyone watching from Korea, my friends, family, and dearest fans, I want to share this joy with you. Thank you,” Lee wrapped up in Korean.
Meanwhile, Hwang took home Outstanding Directing for a Drama Series, marking the first time a non-English language drama has been awarded in the category. Hwang had won against directors of television shows like Ozark, Severance, Succession and Yellowjackets.
“People keep telling me, like, I made history, but I don’t think I made history by myself. Because it was you who opened up the doors for Squid Game, inviting us here tonight at the Emmys,” said the director.
“I truly hope that Squid Game won’t be the last non-English series to be here at the Emmys, and I also hope this won’t be my last Emmy either,” he said, before promising to return with the second season of Squid Game.
Other categories in which Squid Game had been nominated include Outstanding Drama Series, Hwang for Outstanding Writing for a Drama Series, Jung for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series, as well as Park and Oh for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Drama Series.
At the Creative Arts Emmys which took place on September 4, actress Lee Yoo-mi also took home Outstanding Guest Actress award for her role as Ji-yeong in the hit series.
In addition to Lee’s win, Squid Game also won Outstanding Special Visual Effects in a Single Episode, Outstanding Stunt Performance and Outstanding Production Design for a Narrative Contemporary Program (One Hour or More) that same night. In total, Squid Game has won six out of 14 categories it was nominated in at this year’s Emmys.