Hallam Foe takes top prize at French festival

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THE Scottish film which opened this year's Edinburgh International Film Festival scooped top prize at a special festival in France, at the weekend.

Hallam Foe director David Mackenzie was there with producer Gillian Berrie, to accept the Hitchcock d'Or from a jury at the 18th Festival du Film Britannique in Brittany - an event aimed at promoting British cinema in France.

The film which Mackenzie adapted with Ed Whitmore from a novel by Peter Jinks, featured Jamie Bell in his first starring role since Billy Elliot, as well as Sophie Myles and Ciarn Hinds.

Hallam Foe was also awarded the Prix Kodak for best Cinematography, for the work of the film's director of photography, Giles Nuttgens.

Mackenzie said at the closing ceremony: "There was a fantastic response to the film here and the prize tops it all.

"I hope that the reaction will mean the film finds a French distributor who will be prepared to release it over here."

Shot in Edinburgh, the film started its festival career earlier this year in Berlin where it won a Silver Bear in recognition of its music as well as an Independent Jury Prize.

It also picked up an international critics' accolade at the Motovun Film Festival.

The film was released in the UK by Buena Vista International following its Edinburgh premiere.

Rights to the film have been sold to Germany, Austria, Scandinavia, Greece, Switzerland and the former Yugoslavia.

The Hitchcock d'Argent "Le Prix Premier du Public", awarded to the film selected as most popular by the public went to Brick Lane, starring Tannishtha Chatterjee, Satish Kaushik and Christopher Simpson.

The festival is supported by the UK Film Council with the British Council and the Centre National de la Cinmatographie.

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