French-born Benjamin Renner's graduation film from La Poudriere animation school A Mouse's Tale has been named the winner of this year's Cartoon d'Or at the 19th Cartoon Forum in Ludwigsburg.

The four-minute short using silhouette animation, beat competition from four other finalists including UK animator Matthew Walker's John And Karen and Belgian Arnaud Demuynck's Breakout.

The Cartoon d'Or distinction, which is the only pan-European prize in the field of animation, also includes $ 14,000 (Euros 10,000) financial support towards the prize-winner's next own project.

The film also received the Audience Award for Best Short Film at Brussels' Anima Festival in February this year. 24-year-old Renner is currently working at Les Armateurs as lead animator on the feature adaptation of Ernest Et Celestine.

The five finalists for the Cartoon d'Or were drawn from 32 prize-winners of nine European animation festivals. Jury member Michael Coldewey of Germany's Trixter Film said that they had 'judged the films by considering good stories and strong characters and not in terms of technique.'

The 20th Cartoon Forum will be held in September 2009 in Norway's Stavanger. The Forum is supported financially by the European Union's MEDIA Programme.