Backbeat: Dari Awards Honor AMC, Producers Guild, Venture 3D, Billboard
Backbeat: Dari Awards Honor AMC, Producers Guild, Venture 3D, Billboard

Dari Awards
KCCLA director & consul Jaewon Kim welcomes guests and honorees at the seventh annual Dari Awards. (Photo: Aki Kaneko)

Bridging cultures and building relationships through strategic media and business partnerships was the focus of the seventh annual Dari Awards, presented Dec. 13 by the Korean Cultural Center (KCCLA) and the Korea Creative Content Agency (KOCCA USA). Held at Los Angeles' Korean Cultural Center, the ceremony saluted four honorees: AMC Entertainment president of programming Robert Lenihan (person of the year), the Producers Guild of America (business partnership of the year), Venture 3D (Korean business of the year) and Billboard (media partnership of the year).

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Dari Awards
AMC was recognized for its instrumental role in securing distribution for Korean films in the U.S. Among the slate of Korean films shown in AMC Theaters this year were "Sunny," "Finding Mr. Destiny" and "Late Autumn." Lenihan, shown with wife Carrie, noted that AMC "remains committed to providing quality Korean films to our guests." (Photo: Aki Kaneko)

Billboard was honored for its K-Pop Hot 100 chart, launched on Aug. 25, 2011 in conjunction with Billboard Korea. Since its introduction, the K-Pop Hot 100 has become Billboard.com's 10th most popular chart in terms of unique visitors.

Dari Awards
Producers Guild of America co-president Hawk Koch (at podium) and Stuart Levy (center, next to Kim-Perek), chairman of the organization's international committee, were on hand to receive the PGA's award. Its efforts to help expand business opportunities in Korea include its annual Produced By Conference. (Photo: Aki Kaneko)

Before presenting the awards, mistress of ceremonies Jinah Kim-Perek introduced KCCLA director & consul Jaewon Kim and KOCCA USA director Kye Kyoungbon Koo. Both executives stressed the importance of building and sustaining business relationships between Korea and the U.S. "Dari is the Korean word for bridge," said Kim. "We are here to build a bridge between our two nations; to collaborate and build relationships while opening the path [to bring] Korean culture to America." Added Koo, "With the rise of K-pop, there are now more opportunities for American companies to work with Korea. We will continue to build these relationships."

Dari Awards
Venture 3D, a growing leader in the 3D conversion market, operates in Seoul and Los Angeles and counts such projects as "The Green Hornet," Michael Jackson's "This Is It" and "Titanic." Co-founders Marcus Englefield (center, next to Kim-Perek) and George Lee (at podium) accepted the award. (Photo: Aki Kaneko)

Dari Awards
Pictured prior to enjoying a post-ceremony dinner that included a diverse array of dishes, including bacon-wrapped asparagus, sushi, tempura, kimchi and various desserts, are Venture 3D's Englefield and wife Dvora Englefield, music department head of publicity firm 42West. The company's clients include Mary J. Blige, Sara Bareilles, Evanescence and Neil Diamond. (Photo: Aki Kaneko)