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Welby Ings' Boy wins Cinequest award

Welby Ings' Boy wins Cinequest award

"a haunting, visually inventive tale"

Auckland film director Welby Ings' first short film, Boy, has won Best Short Narrative Film at the 2005 Cinequest Film Festival in San Jose, qualifying it for consideration for next year's Academy Awards.

Produced by Nic Finlayson for Room 8 Productions, the silent short film tells the story of a young male prostitute living in small-town New Zealand, who tries to expose the truth behind a fatal hit-and-run accident.

The 2005 Cinequest Film Festival, which represented films from 40 countries, included 575 feature films and 1202 short films in its programme.

Premiered at the New Zealand International Film Festival in June 2004, Boy has screened in film festivals around the world, including the New York, Montreal and Clermont-Ferrand festivals. It has also screened widely on the lesbian and gay film festival circuit.

Boy was supported by a $19,013 grant from the Screen Innovation Production Fund, a partnership between Creative New Zealand and the New Zealand Film Commission. The New Zealand Film Commission also contributed an additional $20,460 post-production finance to complete the film and is handling international sales and festivals.

Ings said that winning the Cinequest award for Best Short Narrative Film acknowledged the fact that with film, you can take risks and approach your story in an unusual way.

"I approached Boy as a typographer and illustrator, not as a filmmaker. That in itself was unconventional," he said. "The result is a visually intense film that deals with an aspect of New Zealand society seldom discussed. I really wanted to offer something new to film and its success vindicates the approach I took."

Boy has been selected for the American Short Film Archive 100, which is managed by the University of Nevada and contains what are considered to be the world's 100 most significant short films.

Filmmaker Magazine in New York described Boy as "a haunting, visually inventive tale about coming of age and into sexuality"; La Press Montreal commented on its "brilliant storyline"; and Rozefilm, Holland described it as "visually stunning".

More information and stills from Boy can be downloaded from www.boyshortfilm.co.nz

ends

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