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Kristiansand Int. Children's film festival #11 2008 report by Shihab Shirazee, Bangladesh


The FICC Jury in Kristiansand 2008 and festival director Danckert M. Krohn (second from right)
Kristiansand, which is situated on the very south coast of Norway and surrounded by water. In this town the 11th Kristiansand International Children Film Festival held on from 22-27 April 2008. I was the Bangladeshi representative in the jury for Don Quixote Prize. The other members are Gry Gaard, Norway and David O Mahony, Ireland.

By spending most of the time together it almost felt like the three different juries have been growing together as one though we go from different backgrounds with very diverse personalities. Thirteen films were in the youth competition program. It was not so easy to finding the winner for the Don Quixote Award. I want to praise the festival for a very pleasant and diverse film selection and also for well management.
Finally the Don Quixote Prize of the International Federation of Film Societies was given to "The Black Baloon" directed by Elissa Down from Australia. The jury felt the film managed to convey a very important message in a highly entertaining manner. Director handles the emotions in the film truthfully and also the acting was brilliant. But I also want to remark some films from the youth competition program, Fighter directed by Natasha Arthy, Ben X directed by Nic Balthazar, Ezra directed by Newton I. Aduaka, XXY directed by Lucia Puenzo, Estrellita directed by Metod Pevec.
For tight schedule I can't see more film from other sections but the arrangement of Video Bar helps me to see some other films. This year festival's seminar topic was "The Importance of Media Literacy" which was presented by ECFA (European Children's Film Association). In this seminar Kristiansand distributors, festival managers and people who work in different organizations and fields of media literacy was meet to discuss common problems, to learn from each other and hopefully they will start productive co-operations on an international level.
I will always remember the 11th Kristiansand International Children Film Festival as a fulfilling experience. It felt like a dream for me, spending almost a week watching interesting films surrounded by experts and out coming friends with whom we were always talking about the film culture and sharing our opinions about film. The festival is doing its best and in my eyes is doing a very good job at bringing together people from different cultures, who all have one thing in common, which is the love for film and life.
I want to thank the festival team for all the hard work and especially the FICC for choosing me. Thank you.