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SIGGRAPH 2007 Computer Animation Festival Awards Announced

Winners of the SIGGRAPH 2007 Computer Animation Festival have been announced: Best of Show Award (ARK from Poland), Jury Honors (DREAMMAKER from Institute of Animation, Visual Effects and Digital Post Production Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg) and Award of Excellence (EN TUS BRAZOS from Supinfocom Valenciennes). The 34th International Conference and Exhibition on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques will be held Aug. 5-9 in San Diego, California.

The Computer Animation Festival jury selected three award winners from a record-breaking 905 entries for exemplary use of computer-generated imagery, animation and storytelling. For the first time in the history of SIGGRAPH, two of the award-winning films are student entries. In all, 134 pieces were selected for the Computer Animation Festival.

Groundbreaking films presented at the SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival have amazed audiences for three decades. Since 1999, the SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival has also been an official qualifying festival for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences "Best Animated Short Film" award. Paul Debevec is the SIGGRAPH 2007 Computer Animation Festival chair from the University of Southern California's Institute for Creative Technologies.

"This year's winners are perfect examples of how computer graphics is enabling small, independent groups to create films with vast landscapes, complex characters, and amazing visuals," commented Debevec. "Just as computer graphics blurs the line between real and virtual, each of these films in its unique way explores what is tangible and what is imaginary and whether that difference is important."

According to Debevec, 2007 marks the first time that filmmakers were able to submit high-definition video to the selection jury, which greatly increased the jury's ability to appreciate the intricacy of each film -- especially the award winners.

Debevec continues, "The winning films are not cartoons where scissors dance with staplers, but films with credible human characters who find love, suffer loss and face their mortality, leaving a profound emotional impact on the audience."

* ARK (Best of Show)Grzegorz Jonkajtys and Marcin Kobyleckiwww.thearkfilm.comPoland

An unknown virus has destroyed almost the entire human population. Oblivious to the true nature of the disease, the only remaining survivors escape to the sea. In great ships, they set off in search of uninhabited land untouched by the deadly virus. So begins the exodus, led by one man...

* DREAMMAKER (Jury Honors)Leszek PlichtaInstitute of Animation, Visual Effects and Digital Post ProductionFilmakademie Baden-WurttembergGermany

In the past, this talented dreammaker created the most beautiful dreams for people. Now, he lives in solitude focused on only one purpose -- the creation of a special dream -- his dream...

* EN TUS BRAZOS (Award of Excellence)Francois-Xavier Goby, Edouard Jouret, Matthieu LandourSupinfocom ValenciennesFrance

A remarkable tale of the greatest tango dancer of the 1920s who finds himself confined to a wheelchair after an unfortunate accident. Thanks to his loving wife, he recovers the use of his legs just in time for the most magical dance of his life.

This year's jury featured the following award-winning and internationally acclaimed industry experts:

* Carter EmmartRose Center for Earth and Space, American Museum of Natural History

* Nickson FongEgg Story Creative Production

* Michael KassPixar Animation Studios

* Randal KleiserFilm Director (GREASE)

* Gavin MillerAdobe Systems Inc.

* Shelley PageDreamWorks Animation

* Jay ReddSony Pictures Imageworks (MONSTER HOUSE)

* Habib ZargarpourElectronic Arts

For complete details on SIGGRAPH 2007, visit www.siggraph.org/s2007.

SIGGRAPH 2007 will bring an estimated 25,000 computer graphics and interactive technology professionals from six continents to San Diego for the industry's most respected technical and creative programs focusing on research, science, art, animation, gaming, interactivity, education and the web from Aug. 5-9 at the San Diego Convention Center. SIGGRAPH 2007 includes a three-day exhibition of products and services from the computer graphics and interactive marketplace from Aug. 7-9. More than 250 international exhibiting companies are expected. Registration for the conference and exhibition is open to the public.

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