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Winners Wow Audience at Chicago Children's Film Festival

Winners Wow Audience at Chicago International Children's Film Festival
Closing Night Awards Presentation
Chicago, IL - October 31, 2010 - The 27th annual Chicago International Children's Film Festival congratulates the winners of more than 30 awards presented at the Festival's American Airlines Closing Night Awards Presentation on Sunday, October 31, 2010 at Columbia College's Film Row Cinema. Filmmakers from around the world came to watch the most acclaimed films of the Festival and to celebrate ten days of workshops, discussions, and life-changing movies. Films from Australia, Canada, Denmark, England, Finland, Germany, Hungary, Japan, Netherlands, Norway, the Russian Federation, Sri Lanka, and the USA swept the awards, with German films receiving nine of the top honors.

Complete 2010 CICFF Winners List (Click Here)

Over the last ten days, Chicago audiences watched 270 exceptional films and over 18,000 children watched and had the opportunity to cast their votes for the top flicks. The Best of the Fest prize, selected by children from Festival audiences through an online voting system, was awarded to Jakob Schuh, Max

The Gruffalo
Best of the Fest
Lang, Micheal Rose, and Martin Pope for The Gruffalo (England, 2009), an animated short film (featuring the voices of Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, and John Hurt) about a plucky mouse who outsmarts the many predators he meets on a walk through the forest. The Gruffalo also received second prize from the Adult Jury in the Animated Short Film category.

Said Mr. Schuh, "I've been very touched all throughout this week by what you are doing, what Facets is doing. Encouragement is a big thing when you're a filmmaker, and you encourage children, and you encourage us."

Light of the River
Animated Feature Film, First Prize from Children's and Adult Juries

The Children's Jury honored director Franziska Buch with the top prize in the Live-action Feature Film category for Here Comes Lola! (Germany, 2010), about a young German girl forced to move to the big city when closed-minded neighbors prove intolerant of her father's Afro-Brazilian background.

The Children's Jury's First Prize for Documentary Film went to Arne Birkenstock for Chandani - The Daughter of the Elephant Whisperer (Germany/Sri Lanka, 2009), and First Prize for Animated Feature Film went to Tetsuo Hirakawa for Light of the River (Japan, 2009) - which also received first prize in this category from the Adult Jury.

As the only children's film festival in the world whose winners can go on to compete for the Academy Awards, excitement and anticipation surrounded the Festival's two Academy Award-

The Road Home
Adult Jury Live-action Short Film
qualifying categories: the Adult Jury Live-action Short Film and Adult Jury Animated Short Film awards.

The Live-action Short Film prize went to Rahul Gandotra for The Road Home (England, 2010), about a young boy who runs away from his boarding school in the Himalayas because nobody there can see beyond his Indian appearance to understand that he feels more at home in his native England.

The Animated Short Film prize went to Andrew Ruhemann & Shaun Tan for The Lost Thing (Australia, 2010), a modern fable with a unique aesthetic about a boy seeking to find a home for a strange and overlooked creature. The Lost Thing was also recognized with The Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Prize of $2,500 for Best Film by an Emerging Director.

Alte Knudsen, who directed Orps - The Movie (Norway, 2009) took home the First Prize for Adult Jury Live-Action Feature Film, while the Adult Jury Documentary Film prize went to Agostino Imondi and Dietmar Ratsch for their film Neukoelln Unlimited (Germany, 2010).

The Kenneth and Harle Montgomery Prize of $2,500 for Best Child-Produced Film or Video was given to Sophia Pino Tran for A Gum's Life (USA, 2009). The Liv Ullmann Peace Prize, awarded to the film that addresses the issue of global connectedness and envisions a world living in harmony, went to Markku Lehmuskallio and Anastasia Lapsui for Pudana - Last of the Line (Finland, 2010).

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