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‘War Witch’ Casts Spell at Canadian Screen Awards

Helmer Kim Nguyen's drama takes 10 honors

Helmer-scribe Kim Nguyen’s “War Witch” may have lost the foreign-language film Oscar to “Amour” but it found love at the inaugural Canadian Screen Awards gala Sunday, nabbing 10 trophies including picture, director, original screenplay and actress for Rachel Mwanza.

The pic — about a woman who tells her unborn child the story of her life as a child soldier in sub-Saharan Africa — also won supporting actor (Serge Kanyinda), cinematography, editing, art direction, overall sound and sound editing awards. It’s produced by Item 7’s Pierre Even and Marie-Claude Poulin.

The wins cap a triumphant run for “Witch,” which world-preemed in competition in Berlin last year and has gathered kudos around the world. It opened in the U.S. this weekend.

Canuck pics had a notable year at fests, and three of those were double winners: David Cronenberg’s “Cosmopolis” won for Howard Shore’s original score and original song; Xavier Dolan’s “Laurence Anyways” nabbed best costume design and make-up; and Deepa Mehta’s “Midnight’s Children” won for Salman Rushdie’s adapted screenplay of his bestseller and Seema Biswas’ supporting actress turn.

“Resident Evil: Retribution,” the previously-announced winner of the 2012 Golden Reel (top Canuck pic at the domestic box-office) and a strong earner at the international box office last year, nabbed the best visual effects CSA for the team led by Dennis Berardi of Toronto’s Mr. X.

James Cromwell won best actor for his perf in Michael McGowan’s “Still Mine.”

Sarah Polley’s “Stories We Tell,” a darling of the fall 2012 fest circuit, was voted best feature-length documentary.

Awards in 11 TV categories were also bestowed Sunday, including best international drama, a new category, which went to “The Borgias.”

The Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television also handed out a whopping 92 CSAs in TV and digital programming over two nights last week.

The CSAs replace the Gemini awards for television and the Genie awards for film.

The full list of winners is available on the Academy of Canadian Cinema and Television website, http://www.acadamy.ca

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