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Puskin Gets Cartoon d'Or Nod from Encounters

On Saturday, Nov. 24, The Encounters Short Film Festival announced the winners of its 13th annual international competition.

At a gala ceremony, held at Watershed, Bristol, U.K., the festival awarded the Animate Artist Award, sponsored by Animate Projects, C4 and the Arts Council England, to NIJUMAN NO BEREI (200,000 PHANTOMS), directed by French video artist Jean-Gabriel Periot. Periot received the 2,000 GBP Animate cash prize for his film, which uses intricate montages and overlays of still imagery to reveal the changes experienced by Hiroshima from 1914 to 2006.

The Cartoon d'Or nomination went to PUSHKIN, directed by Trevor Hardy. The Bristol-trained stop-frame animator, who now lives in West Sussex, earned the honor of representing Britain in the prestigious Cartoon d'Or competition with his film about a missing cat and a worried owner.

The Children's Jury Award, sponsored by Cosgrove Hall, was given to A GENTLEMAN'S DUEL, directed by Francisco Ruiz and Sean McNally. Comic book artist Ruiz and his Blur Studios colleague, character animator McNally, won over the festival's specially convened jury of 9- to 14-year-old cinephiles with their story about an elegant tea party being upset when two aristocrats find they are rivals in love.

The Depict! Award, sponsored by Aardman, Films@59, Arts Alliance Media, BBC Film Network and Shooting People, went to OPERATOR, directed by Matthew Walker. The Bristol-based writer, director and animator won the 2,000 GBP prize for his 90-second micro-film, which begins with a man calling telephone enquiries to ask: "Do you have a number for God?"

The International Newcomer in Animation Award was given to THE ITCH, directed by Joel Green. The young British animator, from the National Centre for Computer Animation, Bournemouth, won 2,500 GBP and the title of best animation newcomer against opposition from Australasia, Asia, Europe, and North America with his film about a man being trailed by an unwelcome companion he can't shake off.

For a complete list of winners, visit www.enounters-festival.org.uk.

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Rick DeMott
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