Kazakh film wins main feature prize

Kazakh pic “Tulpan,” took home the main feature prize at the Asia Pacific Screen Awards, the region’s highest kudos, at a special ceremony Tuesday on the Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia.

As more than 700 bizzers from Asia Pacific, Europe and the U.S. watched, prizes were handed out to Israel’s “Waltz With Bashir” (animated film); South Korea’s “63 Years On,” (doc) and Australia’s “The Black Balloon” (kid pic).

Turkish helmer Nuri Bilge Ceylan won for “Three Monkeys,” Israelis Suha Arraf and Eran Riklis shared the scribe prize for “Lemon Tree” while Korean Lee Mo-gae took the cinematography trophy for “The Good the Bad the Weird.”

Acting hardware was distributed to actress Hiam Abbass for “Lemon Tree” and actor Reza Naji for “The Song of Sparrows.”

The UNESCO kudo for promotion and preservation of cultural diversity through film went to Iran’s “Tinar” and the jury grand prize was a tie between China’s “The Red Awn” and India’s “The Prisoner.”

As announced earlier, Bollywood producer Yash Chopra was honored with the FIAPF Award.

Bruce Beresford, prexy of the international jury, said, “I was very impressed by the quality and originality of the films — all of them — and I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience of being around so many extraordinarily talented filmmakers.”

In all, 32 films repping 17 countries were in the running.

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