At the closing ceremony of Denmark's 13th NatFilm Festival in Copenhagen (April 14), the event's audience voted the Indian cricket-musical Lagaan yet another prize, but this time one which means it will get a theatrical release in Denmark.
The prize, which is awarded in collaboration with the Danish Film Institute, carries a purse of $12,000 (DKR100,000) earmarked for the local distributor who is willing to release the film.
Bollywood films attracted great attention at the NatFilm festival, with Karan Johar's K3G (Sometimes Happiness, Sometimes Sorrow) reaching third place on the audience's popularity list of films without a Danish distributor - after Robbie Williams documentary Nobody Someday by Brian Hill.
Next on the list were The Experiment (Oliver Hirschbiegel), Hedwig And The Angry Inch (John Cameron Mitchell), Dark Water (Hideo Nakata), Metropolis (Rintaro), Versus (Ryuhei Kitamura) and Jay And Silent Bob Strike Back (Kevin Smith).
Last year's winner of the audience award was Hideo Nakata's The Ring, which was subsequently released by Miracle Films.
After 10 days in Copenhagen, where 143 films from 34 countries were screened, a scaled down version of the NatFilm Festival will tour the smaller Danish cities of Odense, Aarhus and Aalborg until April 21. Though the number of screenings has been trimmed from 406 to 350 since last year, the total number of admissions will no doubt make it past 2001's 31,000.
The festival is organised by Natsvaermerfonden, an independent fund established to support young Danish film. The Board of Directors include Lejf Bernt, Kirsten Dalgaard, Hanne Palmquist, Claus Hesselberg and Peter Wolsgaard. The festival's programmer is Kim Foss.