Banff Rockie Awards fete ‘Subway Stories’

HBO made-for named best TV program in the world

BANFF — A made-for-TV movie based on real-life stories from an HBO contest was named the best TV program in the world at the 19th annual Banff Rockie Awards presented Monday night.

“Subway Stories,” produced by Clinica Estetico Ltd./Home Box Office in association with Ten in a Car Prods., which came from a contest launched by HBO in the summer of 1995, took both the Air Canada Grand Prize and the Made-for-TV Movie award.

Global representation

More than 80 programs from more than 40 countries received nominations for the Banff Rockie Awards, the black tie highlight of the Banff Television Festival in which 1,600 television makers, shakers and hopefuls have descended on this Alberta resort town to nosh and shmooze for the week.

The U.S. and Britain were neck-and-neck for the most awards won. The U.S. received five, including, “Where Have You Gone, Joe DiMaggio?” an HBO sports documentary about the baseball legend, which was named Best Sports Program; “Frontline: Innocence Lost — The Plea,” an examination of the Little Rascals day care abuse case, produced by WGBH/Ofra Bikel Prods. won a Special Jury Award; and “The Practice,” from David E. Kelly Prods. with 20th Century Fox, took the Best Continuing Series prize.

Programs from Britain, which is also the festival’s nation in focus this year, received four awards. “Flatworld,” produced by Tandem Films Ent. with BBC/Eva Entertainment/Videal/S4C received the best animation award; “The Nazis — A Warning From History,” produced by the BBC and the History Channel, received the History and Biography award; “Beyond Fear,” a Channel 5 production with Pearson Television International, won a Special Jury Award; and “Hospital,” also from Channel 5 with Tiger Aspect Prods. won the Best Comedy prize.

The Best Social & Political Documentary award went to “True Stories: The Grave,” produced by Soul Purpose for Channel Four.

Collaborative efforts

“Richter, l’Insoumis,” a co-production between France, Britain and Germany, received the Best Arts Documentary prize, and “Richard II,” co-produced by Britain, France and Italy received the Best Performance Program award. Canadian programs “Gabrielle Roy” and “The Tale of Teeka,” received the History & Biography and the Best Children’s Program award, respectively.

Italy, Israel, Japan, the Netherlands, and Sweden also were represented in the ceremony, presenting 17 awards for excellence in television.