Kids are the main attraction at the Chicago International Children's Film Festival. This year, about 24,000 kids attended the event. So did hundreds of actors and directors from around the globe. They traveled to Chicago, Illinois, to teach-and learn from-the children at the festival.
From October 21 through 31, more than 200 animated and live-action films made especially for kids were shown at the festival. An October 31 awards ceremony honored the best of the fest.
Young movie buffs helped pick some of the winners. Before the festival began, a group of 70 kids, called the Children's Jury, reviewed the 100 movies selected for the awards competition. The Children's Jury then gave prizes in seven categories. Two adult review boards also awarded prizes.
The 21-year-old festival gets two thumbs up from teachers, parents and kids. Nicole Dreiske, the festival director, thinks one reason for its popularity is that it has "tapped into amazing filmmakers from different countries."
Many of those amazing filmmakers are kids. They made 36 of the festival's films. Five kid-produced movies won awards. A 14-year-old from Armenia, Moushegh (moo-sef) Baghdasaryan (bah-dah-sahr-ee-un), won a certificate of excellence. His film, Intervention, was one of only two child-produced projects to receive such a high honor.
Moushegh wrote, filmed and edited his movie, which shows kids playing on a tank. He wanted to show that "children do not want wars." He was the only winner in his category who worked alone. "Ten days have passed since the festival, and I am still happy," he told TFK.
By Kathyrn Satterfield
Young People's Media Network - Coordinator
c/o ECMC (European Centre for Media Competence)
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