The Banff World Television Festival Where Great Television is Born
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2005-06-13 - Banff, Canada
It was a record-shattering night for the British Broadcasting Corporation at the 26th Banff Rockie Awards: Its programs won the $50,000 Global Television Grand Prize and half-a-dozen category awards at the world’s most inclusive and prestigious international program competition.

The BBC’s Blackpool was named best-of-festival by a blue-ribbon international jury led by Banff’s founding chairman, Fil Fraser. “Blackpool stood out in an excellent competitive field by virtue of its highly creative and innovative synthesis of music and drama in the exploration of human relationships,” said Fraser. “What emerges in this production is nothing less than a new genre of television programming, a major step forward in advancing the kind of quality television that this festival was born to celebrate.” Blackpool also won the Banff Rockie for Best Mini-Series.

The $25,000 NHK President’s Prize for the program best exemplifying the creative use of HDTV technology went to the brilliantly crafted Finnish program L’Enfant et les Sortileges (The Bewitched Child), with the Austrian science documentary Ants finishing a strong second. The cash award for the NHK President’s Prize, like the Global Television Grand Prize, goes to the program producers.

In addition to Best Mini-Series for Blackpool, the BBC took home Banff Rockies for Best Information and Current Affairs – Panorama: The New Killing Fields; Best Lifestyle Program – What Not to Wear: Teenage Daughters; Best Performance Program – Flashmob: The Opera; Best Unscripted Entertainment Program – Dragon’s Den; and Best History and Biography Program – Storyville: House of Saud, co-produced with ARTE France.

Besides mini-series, British producers and broadcasters scored a big success in the festival’s other major drama category, Made-for-Television Movies, which was won by Channel Four for acclaimed playwright Terry Johnson’s Not Only But Always, a compelling dramatization of the lives of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore.

Canada had a very good night, with Banff Rockies for Best Animation Program – Tales from the Crib; Best Comedy – Et Dieu créa Laflaque; Best Feature Documentary – Shake Hands With the Devil; and a Special Jury Prize for Hana’s Suitcase: An Odyssey of Hope. New this year, a distinguished all-Canadian jury – as distinct from the international jury – named Shake Hands With the Devil the Best Canadian Program of this year’s Banff nominees.

Japan and the United States each won three international Banff Rockies this year. Programs from Japan’s public broadcaster, NHK, were named Best Popular Science and Natural History Program – Unprecedented Fabrication; Best Sports Program – 262 Hits: Ichiro’s Perspective; and Best Family and Youth Program – Extracurricular Lesson: Tell Us About Your Life, Conquer the World with Smile Power.

The three American programs winning prizes at the 2005 Banff Rockie Awards were from a celebrated public television documentary series, a major network, and a small independent producer. The Best Social and Political Documentary prize went to Frontline: Ghosts of Rwanda from WGBH; the Best Continuing Series was Touchstone Television’s critical and popular success Desperate Housewives; and the Best Arts Documentary was the independent production Miles Davis, Miles Electric: A Different Kind of Blue.

France, in addition to its share of Storyville: House of Saud (the History & Biography Winner) also won a Special Jury Prize for Envoyé Spécial – Traversée clandestine, also in the Information category. The delightful Polish film The Magic Tree: Wooden Dog beat out a strong field of competitors to win the Banff Rockie for Best Children’s Program.

For a complete list of winners go to: http://www.banff2005.com/winners.php.

The Banff World Television Festival takes place June 12 – 15, 2005, at the Fairmont Banff Springs amid the breathtaking Canadian Rockies. For complete details go to www.banff2005.com.

About The Banff World Television Festival
The Banff World Television Festival is owned by the Banff Television Festival Foundation and is produced by Achilles Media Ltd. on behalf of the Foundation's Board of Directors and Board of Governors. The Foundation's Board of Governors is international in scope and represents the crème de la crème of producers and broadcasters. Achilles Media is a management organization for some of the world's leading television and new media industry events including the Banff World Television Festival, the World Congress of History Producers and nextMEDIA - The International Interactive Media Festival.


For Information:
Sarah Pearson
Communications Manager
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