Children first at Oulu
by Annika Pham
The 24th Oulu International Children’s Film Festival is opening today with the 1982 animated film The Secret of NIMH directed by US director-producer Gary Goldman who is also this year’s Guest of Honor. Goldman collaborated with Steven Spielberg and George Lucas on An American Tail (1986) and The Land Before Time (1988).
12 films will compete for the Star Boy Statuette and €3000 cash prize that will be handed out to the director of the Best film by a jury comprising Belgian festival director Pieter Boeckx from the European Youth Film Festival Flanders, Danish director Linda Krogsoe Holmberg and National Culture spokeswoman from the City of Oulu Kaisu Mikkola. Finnish regional film centre POEM will also give the ‘Little Bear Award’ to a scriptwriter, director, producer or other Finnish film professional for his or her lifetime achievement in film.
The programme will also include a survey of new Finnish children films, a ‘Best from Nordisk Panorama 2005’, short specials, an Oulu 400 years celebration, a POEM seminar dedicated to regional film production and distribution in Finland, and another seminar on media education.
The closing film on November 11, 2005 will be Mikko Niskanen’s children classic The Boys from 1962, part of the Oulu 400 years programme.
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