PNG FILM NETS ACCLAIMED PRIZE

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PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea (March 31, 2000 – Post-Courier)---A Papua New Guinean film produced and directed by the head of the National Film Institute in Goroka has won an international award.

Titled "Bridewealth for a Goddess," the film was completed last year after 14 years of filming.

Institute chief Chris Owen said yesterday the film institute had been awarded the prestigious Prix Nanook-Grand Prix at the 19th annual Bilan du Film Ethnographique.

He said the international festival of ethnographic/anthropological film was held each year at the Museum of Mankind in Paris, France. It has become a showcase for the best documentary films in this genre. He said the film told the story of a chief from the Kawelka tribe near Mount Hagen, in Western Highlands Province.

The chief devoted several years of his life to fulfilling the ritual obligations he inherited after being visited in a dream by Ambkor, a beautiful young woman.

Mr. Owen said: "The film was selected by a distinguished panel of international jurors.

"It runs for 72 minutes."

Mr. Owen said that the final scene in the film is one of those "increasingly rare moments in Papua New Guinea's rapid changing society that only film could capture and preserve for posterity."

It was directed, shot and edited by Mr. Owen, working out of the former Institute of Papua New Guinea Studies film unit in Port Moresby.

The film unit has since been amalgamated with the former Skul Bilong Wokim Piksa to form a new national film institute.

Video copies are available from their cultural gift shop in Port Moresby.

For additional reports from The Post-Courier, go to PACIFIC ISLANDS REPORT News/Information Links: Newspapers/The Post-Courier (Papua New Guinea).

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