Kravchuk's pic picks up top honors at kid fest

AMERSTERDAM — Russian director Andrey Kravchuk’s “The Italian” picked up the top prize at Cinekid, the children’s film, TV and multimedia fest.

Kravchuk beat out 14 other films in competition to walk away with the Cinekid Film Jury Award of L15,000 ($18,200) as well as a Lion, the highest award at the fest. The Postbank Cinekid Film Audience Award of an additional $18,200 was split between Dutch filmmaker Martin Koolhoven’s “Bonkers” and Norwegian lenser Arne Lindtner Naess’ “Finding Friends.” Both films walked away with Lions.

Saturday’s closing ceremonies brought the curtain down on a visitor count of some 40,000, up 15% from a year earlier.

Cinekid, now in its 19th year, is increasingly becoming an industry watering hole where some of the major issues in the world of children’s media are fleshed out. This year experts on kidfare from 22 territories gathered together to firm up the agenda for the World Summit on Children and Media, set for South Africa in 2007.

EA Games won the new media aud award for its simulation game “The Sims Number 2″ at the fest.

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