The inaugural Mobile PhoneMovie Awards - organised by Beijing-based Zonbo Media, Xian city government andXian Hi-tech Industrial Development Zone - closed yesterday in China's Xian city with eight awards given out to youngshort filmmakers across the country.

Father,directed by Qin Xiaopeng, took the top prize, the best film award, winning$1,265 (RMB10,000).

Another $1,265 award, forbest creative film, went to 3D animation AnBan Jiang Hu (lit trans: KitchenBattlefield), directed by Deng Qiang and Huang Liang.

The best director award wentto Zhang Qi's Black And White and RenYuan's Cross Talk Fan, with eachwinner receiving a $630 (RMB5,000) cash award. Winners of the above four awardsare also offered a contract with Zonbo Media as film directors.

Hong Kong director Fruit Chan served as jury chairman for theawards, which began recruiting films from July. The jury selected 85 films from300 entries for the final competition. At the closing ceremony, the organisersalso confirmed the awards to be an annual event, recognising new filmmakingtalents.

Fruit Chan is currentlypreparing one segment of a three-part feature with Zonbo Media entitled Xian Story. Taiwanese filmmaker SilviaChang will direct the Taiwan segment while the mainland director for the thirdsegment is yet to be announced, according to Zonbo Media manager Lin Yi.

Beijing-based Zonbo Medialast year produced a collection of eight short films, Focus, The Moment, with directors including Jia Zhangke, WangXiaoshuai and Xiao Jiang. The project wasone of the first in China to release short films to mobile phones andbroadband media.

Zonbo is now collaboratingwith telco China Unicom and internet portal Sina to show short films to bothcell phones and on

China is now the largest mobile phone using country with 300 million users; ofwhich 20 million have subscribed to multimedia services including short filmsand games downloading. It's estimated that multimedia mobile phone users aregrowing at a rate of 30% a year.